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I've noticed a lot of updates come through update manager in the last few weeks.

When updates to core systems are required is there a schedule for release that I can check off against what I'm downloading onto my system?

It's highly unlikely, but I do not want to download possibly suspect updates/programs. Am I being paranoid or is this a real concern?

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ubuntu wiki seems to suggest that there is no set schedule. They say they don't update unless it's important but there can be times where a lot of updates get sent out. It also is a fairly new release, which is where most of the updates happen. The frequency of updates should decrease over time.
Personally I'm not concerned about getting malicious software from the ubuntu updates, but that doesn't mean that it's not a real concern.

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