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A package is a port, pre-compiled for speed and ease of install. You can't change the compile options, packages may not run as fast as ports, and they are frequently somewhat older versions of the software in question than the version in the ports tree. You will also frequently have severe problems trying to use packages if the rest of your system has been built on ports, as you will likely have different versions of dependencies than what the package expects.

Sometimes a package is helpful when the port or one of its dependencies is broken or when you only need something installed very quick.

Packages are added with the command pkg_add and removed with pkg_delete. You can identify which packages have been installed on your system via the pkg_info command.

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