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Ubuntu Software Center

Ubuntu Software Center
Ubuntu Software Center 13.10 on Ubuntu 13.10. The application is called the "Ubuntu Software Centre" outside of the U.S.
Original author(s) Canonical Ltd. / Ubuntu Foundation
Developer(s) Canonical Ltd.
Initial release October 29, 2009 (2009-10-29)
Stable release 13.10 / October 7, 2013 (2013-10-07)
Development status Active / 45,000 Apps[1]
Written in Python
Platform Ubuntu Desktop Edition 9.10 and later
Ubuntu Touch 1.0 and higher
Type Digital distribution (Apps, Books)
Package manager
License GPL
Website //

Ubuntu Software Center or simply Software Center is a high-level graphical front end for the APT/dpkg package management system. It is free software written in Python, PyGTK/PyGObject based on GTK+ and the further development of the GNOME application, gnome-app-install.

The program can be used to add and manage repositories as well as Ubuntu Personal Package Archives (PPA) and on Ubuntu, the Ubuntu Software Center also allows users to purchase commercial applications.[2]


  • Development history 1
  • See also 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Development history

In early 2009 Ubuntu developers noted that package management within Ubuntu could be improved and consolidated. Recent releases of Ubuntu, such as Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) included five applications for package management which consume space and other resources as well as provide confusion to users. Applications could be downloaded using the basic Add/Remove Applications or with the Synaptic Package Manager. The Software Updater provided updating for installed packages and Computer Janitor cleaned up packages that were no longer needed. The Software Sources application allowed user selection of the package download location.[3]

Ubuntu developers set as a goal:

Canonical introduced the Software Center gradually starting with Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala) with complete functionality expected by Ubuntu 11.10, in October 2011. As of May 2011, the plan has mostly been completed:[3]

October 2009 - version 1.0.2 shipped with Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala)
Introduced a new simple interface for locating, installing, and removing software, with better security based on PolicyKit instead of gksudo.[3]
April 2010 - version 2.0.2 shipped with Ubuntu 10.04 (Lucid Lynx) LTS
The Software Center added lists of non-application packages in a simplified manner and also provide subcategories for applications and Personal Package Archives.[3]
October 2010 - version 3.0.4 shipped with Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat)
Allowed users to purchase software and showed a history of past installations, removals and purchases, including undoing specific changes.[3][4]
April 2011 - version 4.0 shipped with Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal)
Added user rating and reviewing software, and the ability to see ratings and reviews of other participating Ubuntu users.[3][5]
October 2011 - Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot)
Software Center's fifth version was rewritten in GTK3, improving design (better integration with system theme, promoting banner added, nicer listing of apps), start-up time was improved too. Software Center was partially prepared for touch control by including larger icons. Software Center also brought Unity Launcher integration, sorting by ratings and system requirements for applications.[6] Some GDebi technology was also integrated to improve speed when handling .deb files.[7]
19 December 2011
an online edition of the Ubuntu Software Center was released, the Ubuntu Apps Directory. The web store shows the same content as the Software Center application, with a download button that opens the application if running Ubuntu or a link to download Ubuntu itself if running a different operating system.[8]
April 2012 - Ubuntu 12.04 (Precise Pangolin)
Ubuntu Software Center gained new monochrome elements.[9] Canonical created a web based developer platform to help programmers to create applications for Ubuntu.[10] Software Center included a new category: "Books and magazines", ability to show video presentations of paid applications and multiple screenshots per one app.[11] And also added progress bar support for Software Centre.[12]

In August 2015 Chris Hoffman of PCWorld criticized the application indicating that Canonical was not maintaining it properly while work on the replacement application was being pursued. In particular he noted that paid applications were not being supported properly and that Canonical had not informed developers of this. The application still works for installing and managing free software applications.[13]

See also

Other example of a high-level graphical front end for APT


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External links

  • Ubuntu Apps Directory
  • /
  • Ubuntu Software Center versions history
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