1. What is software package?
Software in Ubuntu and other Linux system are organized as packages. Actually, there are many types of package. With each package type, you have different ways to install.
Below is the list of common package types used in Linux system
|deb||Debian package, originally from Debian. Used by Debian and derivatives such as Ubuntu|
|RPM||Red Hat Package Manager, originally from Red Hat, is now used by many other distributors as well, like openSUSE and Mandriva Linux.|
|ebuild||the file containing information on how to retrieve, compile, and install a package in Gentoo’s Portage system using the command emerge|
|PISI||is used by Pardus.|
|tgz or tar.gz||standard tar + gzip, possibly with some extra control files|
|MO||Used by SLAX. Opens with SLAX Module Manager, and then gets installed to the KDE menu as a Desktop Config file|
|PUP and PET||used by Puppy Linux|
To understand why software must be packaged and package management system, please read this article: Package management system
In this article, I just want to introduce to you 3 popular package management system to help you install software on Ubuntu (Debian, RedHat, and Autopackage).