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Ubuntu Hacks by Bill Childers, Kyle Rankin, Jonathan Oxer

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Hack #60. Modify the List of Package Repositories

Add extra Ubuntu software repositories to your system to gain access to thousands of new pieces of packaged software.

If you are used to installing programs on operating systems other than Linux, the idea of package managers and repositories might seem a bit foreign. To install a program on Windows or Mac OS X, you would insert a CD or download an installer from the Internet and run it. Under Ubuntu, software comes in packages. Packages are the different groups of files that make up a particular piece of software, along with the instructions Ubuntu needs to install and remove the software, dependency information, and so on. With packages, Ubuntu lets you install and update all of your software using a single tool. Whether you use Synaptic [Hack #55], Adept [Hack #56], or apt-get [Hack #54], your package manager will automatically download and install packages you specify along with any other packages (dependencies) they might require.

Instead of being randomly scattered on project pages around the Internet, Ubuntu packages reside in software repositories, which are centralized sites that contain a large number of packages. Each software repository contains a certain class of software that is generally intended for a particular release of Ubuntu, usually in both source and binary form (these are divided into their own repositories) and then further subdivided by what sort of support or software license the package has. Here are some ...

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