Hey! I have built this cool application for Ubuntu users. And I want other users to use it. Do you know how can I publish it? Worry not. Ubuntu has a way identified to help developers publish their applications and make them available for installation and regular updates through a standardized mechanism. PPA is your answer.

What is PPA?

PPA in Ubuntu context means “Personal Project Archive”. Using PPA, one can distribute software and updates directly to Ubuntu users. Launchpad provides a collaboration platform that includes service to create binaries and host your repository to be used by other Ubuntu users. Launchpad is maintained by the company “Canonical Ltd”, who also maintains Ubuntu distro. As a result, the distribution of the software to Ubuntu users becomes smooth.

File Archive of the old times – PPA is much more than this!

How to use PPA?

As a developer, you will need to upload your sources in your account at Launchpad. Then Launchpad handles the creation of binaries and hosting your repository. You then can publish link to the repository. Your application users then get the application and subsequent updates when they point to your repository.

And then you would want to know how to use any PPA. You can refer to this article to get more details. But, essentially, couple of commands and then you can use any new software available via PPA. The “Advanced Packaging Tool” or APT handles the installation of such binaries for you. And hence it is very easy to get new software and the updates.

Launchpad supports binaries for two platforms – x86 and AMD64. One can also request support for additional architectures such as arm64. You can get all the details here.

Any red flags?

And if you are wondering if it is safe to use software from these personal project archives, then read this excellent links – Are PPAs safe to add to my system and what are some “red flags” to watch out for?

Read for yourself and then decide what is good for you.

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Linux, Tools, Ubuntu

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