Remove / Uninstall packages marked ‘rc’ on Debian / Ubuntu.

While checking the status of packages using dpkg, it is possible to see a ‘rc’ state for some unused packages, this corresponds to:
r: the package was marked for removal
c: the configuration files are currently present in the system

In other words: the package is not completely removed (config files are still present), but not installed anymore (and obviously not used).

To see a list of packages marked as ‘rc’:

dpkg --list | grep "^rc"

Or, to see only package names:

dpkg --list | grep "^rc" | cut -d " " -f 3

It is now time to remove all the marked packages (WARNING: All configuration data will be lost!):

dpkg --list | grep "^rc" | cut -d " " -f 3 | xargs sudo dpkg --purge

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