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In both Synaptic Package Manager and Ubuntu Software Center, I sometimes see the following footnote.

Canonical does not provide updates for deja-dup. Some updates may be provided by the Ubuntu community.

Does this mean that these packages are not automatically updated as new versions are released?
... or does it just mean that Canonical plays no part in the development of the particular app.
... or does it mean something else?

Do I need to monitor and manage the installation of latest releases myself?

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1  
Whether Canonical supports a package or not, new versions won't get into the repository, just bugfixes for the existing version. That's the Stable Release Update policy. –  maco Oct 11 '10 at 18:15
    
I am still a bit puzzled, because Canonicl put the entry into the Package Manager in the first place. Do you mean that Canonical won't upgrade it until at least the next release of Ubuntu (and sometimes ealier, for some bugfixes) ?? –  Peter.O Oct 11 '10 at 19:43

5 Answers 5

up vote 9 down vote accepted

It means that if there is a security problem or minor bug fixed in the application, then Canonical makes no guarantee they will update it to protect your system, etc.

If there is a major problem the Ubuntu community will usually issue an update though.

No, I wouldn't worry at all about monitoring new releases.

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It means Canonical does not official support the package, meaning it is a package built and contributed by community members.

In short Canonical has no responsibility regarding the said package. Though it may be updated if it's importance of a high priority.

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For future reference:

http://www.ubuntu.com/project/about-ubuntu/components

Some minor exceptions notwithstanding, an Ubuntu release does not get updates with new upstream versions of software once it's out. The updates you get with Update Manager are either updates that fix major, high impact bugs, or security updates. The difference between the main and Universe components in this regard is that Canonical guarantees updates for software in main, wherease updates to software in Universe are provided by the community on a best effort basis.

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A good reference to the horse's mouth, but I don't speak "horse" very well :) ... Does this mean that the Universe and Multiverse lists will not be updated regularly? ... The entries get into the sources lists somehow, either via Canonical's defaults, or my additions/modificatons... My main question) is now: Does Ubuntu's daily/weekly update Manager cater to all and evey change in the sources-list? –  Peter.O Oct 11 '10 at 20:12

There are a couple of different types of software you can download and install from Ubuntu Software-Center or Synaptic.

Official: This is software downloaded directly off the Ubuntu servers that is either maintained directly by Canonical or by the Ubuntu community. Both have a very strict process ensuring ensuring that the software works and gets security updates quickly.

Canonical only supports the core of Ubuntu while the vast majority of software is supported by the Ubuntu community.

3rd party: This is software you either directly download off the internet and install (e.g. by double-clicking a .deb-file) or software from a repository (software-channel) you manually added to you Ubuntu installation.

The footnote you see, only means that the package doesn't belong to the core of software maintained by Canonical.

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Canonical isn't responsible for the upkeep of the packages, that's all it means.

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