Software Centre - Policy

Allison Randal allison at
Thu Dec 8 04:33:44 UTC 2011

On 12/07/2011 04:07 AM, Mario Kemper wrote:
> Hi all,
> why is it not allowed to use the Software Centre when your app is
> already in the official repos? 
> This is a clear disadvantage for all free software developers who are
> maintaining "older" projects. It is a pain to keep the packages
> up-to-date in the official repositories. In most cases you are lucky
> if you know the Debian (or Ubuntu) maintainer and he/she is willing
> to respond immediately. In my experience the distribution of a
> software package for Linux distributions is almost as difficult as
> writing the software itself.
> We can use PPAs, of course. They are great - but it is still to
> difficult for some people to use (and discover) them. Ubuntu offers a
> great platform for app developers nowadays
> - but why is it only
> available for new projects?

Hi Mario,

We're working hard to make that website friendly for new developers,
because we would like to attract more developers to Linux. But it's not
a replacement for the Debian or Ubuntu archives. Think of it more as a
training ground for new developers. We help new developers out with the
first steps of packaging their app, or even making a release if they
haven't done that before. But, the best apps and the best developers
we'll encourage to move on into Debian and Ubuntu. And, we'll help them
out along the way, so they make good connections, have solid footing,
and are able to continue maintaining their apps.

The people doing this work are Debian and Ubuntu developers, the same
people who are working on the main archives. It's not something
completely different, we're just providing a little extra guidance to
get new developers started.

If your app is in Debian or Ubuntu, it's already easily installable by
millions of users around the world. It would be a huge *disadvantage* to
remove that app from those users and start all over with a new process.

If you'd like help making contact with the Debian or Ubuntu packagers of
an app, we can help you out. Or, if your app was abandoned (the
packaging isn't being updated anymore), we can help you along the path
to becoming the maintainer for your own packaging.

The goal here is a positive experience for application developers.
There's a lot more to it than that one piece of submitting an app
through a web interface.


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