Packages management overview

A package system is at the base of the management of the software on every Linux distro.
Even if software is made by many different individuals and organizations, a clever dependency logic with coherent shared libraries has made possible the coexistence of heterogeneous programs.

A different package is usually needed for each different version of each distribution.
The formats used (rpm, deb, tgz, portage) use underlining command line tools that may have different front-ends for package management but the same working logic.

Package automatic upgrade is a feature present in every major distribution with a common logic:
- scheduling of update activities via crontab
- download via selected mirror sites of the updated packages,
- update of the package on the system (simple, fast, effective, secure) using the usual system's packet management tools.
- definition of what kind of packages have to be automatically updated (generally, kernel in never updated in an unattended way).
In some cases the user may choose the preferred update method/tool.

Packages statistics
Distrowatch reports the following statistics on the usega of different packages systems in various distros (data collected the 6th of September 2004):

RPM - Based on the .rpm packages introduced by RedHat - 105 distros:
ADIOS, Ankur Bangla, Ares, Asianux, Aurora, Aurox, Ayrsoft, Bayanihan, Berry, BioBrew, blackPanther, BLAG, Boten, Caixa Magica, cAos, CCux, Chinese 2000, ClarkConnect, Cobind, Cool, Cosix, CPUBuilders, Eadem, EduLinux, ELX, EnGarde, e-smith, Fedora, Fermi, Freedows, Gelecek, Hakin9, Hancom, Happy Mac, Haydar, HispaFuentes, HKLPG, Holon, Icepack, IDMS, Ignalum, K12LTSP, kmLinux, Kore, KRUD, LGIS, Linare, Lineox, Linpus, LinuxConsole, LinuxTLE, Linux XP, Lorma, Lycoris, Magic, Mandows, Mandrake, Media Lab, Miracle, MIZI, Momonga, MSC.Linux, N-iX, NuxOne, Octoz, OpenDesktop, OpenNA, OpenSLS, Openwall, PCLinuxOS, Peanut, PHP Sol, Pie Box, Plan-B, PLD, QiLinux, Red Flag, Red Hat, redWall, Resala, Rocks Cluster, RPM LIve, SAM, SCO, SOT, Sun JDS, SUSE, Tao, Tech, TFM, Thiz, tinysofa, Trustix, Turbolinux, Turkix, vnlinuxCD, Voodoo, White Box, WinBi, WOW, Xteam, Yoper, YourESale

DEB - Based on the .deb packages introduced by Debian - 100 Distros
AbulÉdu, Adamantix, ANTEMIUM, Arabbix, ASLinux, Augustux, BEERnix, Biadix, Bioknoppix, BlackRhino, Bluewall, Bonzai, BrlSpeak, Càtix, ClusterKnoppix, Condorux, Damn Small, Danix, Debian, DebXPde, Defender, DemoLinux, Demudi, Eagle, eduKnoppix, ERPOSS, ESware, Euronode, FAMELIX, Feather, Flonix, Freeduc, Gibraltar, Gnoppix, gnuLinEx, GNUstep, Guadalinex, Hiweed, Impi, INSERT, K-DEMar, Kaella, Kalango, KANOTIX, Kinneret, KlusTriX, knopILS, Knoppel, Knoppix, Knoppix 64, Knoppix STD, KnoppiXMAME, KnoppMyth, Kurumin, LAMPPIX, L.A.S., Libranet, LIIS, LinEspa, Linspire, Linuxin, Livux, LLGP, Loco, Luinux, Luit, MAX, Medialinux, MEPIS, MIKO GNYO, Morphix, Munjoy, Nature's, NordisKnoppix, OGo Knoppix, Omoikane, Oralux, Overclockix, Pequelin, Penguin Sleuth, PHLAK, Pilot, Progeny, Quantian, Santa Fe, Shabdix, Skolelinux, Slavix, Slix, Slo-Tech, SmartPeer, Soyombo, SULIX, Tablix, Tilix, TupiServer, UserLinux, X-evian, Xfld, Xandros, Zopix

TGZ - Based on tarred and compacted packages, introduced by Slackware - 36 Distros
AL-AMLUG, Arch, AUSTRUMI, BearOps, Blin, Buffalo, Burapha, College, CRUX, DARKSTAR, Definity, DeLi, Devil, DNALinux, Drinou, EvilEntity, Freepia, GoboLinux, JoLinux, Litrix, LiveCD Router, Minislack, MUMi, Netwosix, OpenLab, Phayoune, Plamo, Puppy, ROOT, RUNT, Sentinix, Slackintosh, Slackware, SLAX, STUX, Vector

SOURCES - Based on sources - 9 Distros
Core, Gentoo, LFS, Lunar, Murix, Onebase, ROCK, Sorcerer, Source Mage, TA

APT-RPM - Rpm managed with the apt tool - 9 Distros
ALT, Ark, ASP, CLE, Conectiva, Lorma, PLD, Vine, Yellow Dog

PORTAGE - Based on the portage system, introduced by Gentoo - 8 Distros
Gentoo, Gentoox, Jollix, Navyn OS, Shark, SystemRescue, Ututo, Vidalinux, ZerahStar

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