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In this tip, we will learn how to make a backup of all packages and applications installed from repositories or Ubuntu Software Center under Ubuntu, Linux Mint, or any Debian-based system. This will help you easily restore them after installing a new copy of your operating system without the need to install each package separately. With just a few commands, you will be able to store a list of all installed applications and packages in a text file, then you can use this file to install all your packages automatically.

Getting Started

1. Open the terminal and make a backup copy of your applications with this command:

sudo dpkg --get-selections > backup.txt

Now move the backup.txt file to another location (USB drive, CD, external hard drive, etc.)

2. After a new installation of Ubuntu/Linux Mint, cd to the folder containing your text file (backup.txt), then restore your packages with these commands:

sudo apt-get install aptitude 
sudo dpkg --clear-selections 
sudo dpkg --set-selections < backup.txt 
sudo aptitude install

Then follow given prompts.

Note: You may also use Ubuntu Software Center to sync and reinstall your applications on different Ubuntu computers. Open Ubuntu Software Center and head to File > Sync Between Computers.

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