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How do people keep a track of the latest softwares being released? Let me say a distro group like slackware. A distro has ~25K+ packages and about a score of people involved. I hardly think these people keep checking the site of individual developers to see if they have released anything.

Is there a an automatic way? A script? A standardized RSS feed? or a mailing list (parsable mails)?

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Your question is about people keeping track, but your proposed answers seem more like things machines would consume. Do you have a particular use case you're trying to solve, like automatically stay on the latest-and-greatest for some subset of packages? –  ckhan Apr 20 '12 at 5:42
    
Yes. I would like to stay on the latest & greatest. (latest stable or beta as the user may choose). I am trying to seek if there is a solution already than proposing one. The machine readability is to assist the human decision maker. –  Lord Loh. Apr 20 '12 at 5:54
    
If 'latest and greatest' is your goal, be prepared to do a lot of system debugging and you'll have a lot of build and installation headaches. –  jippie Apr 20 '12 at 7:08
    
I understand that. I was trying to put together the things that it would take to build and maintain a distro. This is all hypothetical . Just for academic interest. –  Lord Loh. Apr 20 '12 at 16:11
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2 Answers

up vote 2 down vote accepted

For Debian: Most Debian package sources include a debian/watch file. There is a service (currently not working) which scans these files regularly and informs the corresponding package maintainers if there are new upstream versions.

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This is the closest to what I was looking for. Thank you. –  Lord Loh. Apr 20 '12 at 16:21
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Most software pops up in my Software Center on my desktop. Most Linuxes have such a tool running by default. For HP-UX, Solaris and AIX I usually get en email from supplier or patch at given intervals.

  • For third party software I subscribe to its RSS feed in an RSS aggregator.
  • For third party software without RSS feed I use WebMonX, which is a little desktop program that pops up a notification when a webpage has changed.
  • Don't forget to subscribe to third party security vulnerability feeds too. These feeds may flag software updates in an early stage.
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