Sunday, May 10, 2009

On handling software updates in Ubuntu

GNUmed - one of the FOSS electronic medical records has seen quite a few bugfixes since Ubuntu 9.04 was released. The sad part is that many (potential) users never find out about that.

GNUmed updates are available through the GNUmed team's PPA but few users will search for a PPA. It is documented on the webpage but often when you encounter a bug in a software you are trying you are not investing to much energy into getting it run. It either runs or one moves on.

All we can do about it is wait for the next Ubuntu release to ship an update. I know there is a backports repository but we have been down that road. Until enough people verify that the package should go in backports a new release is out.

I really believe there should be a mechanism that lets Ubuntu users search for software updates and include the PPAs should include the PPAs such as the search on does.


dholbach said...

Check out the following links for getting bugs fixed in releases that are already out: and

Sebastian Hilbert said...

Did that. We have been down that road. I am aware that updates pose a risk to security and stability so I guess we will try it again.

Arkadiusz said...

If the updates just fix bugs - they will be included in the current release of Ubuntu. If they bring new functionality - they will be included in the next release.

Updates firstly go into Proposed, then into Recommended.

Sebastian Hilbert said...

I understand. The latest bug fix release is 0.3.12 which was in the PPA but was removed automatically when I releases 0.4.4.

0.4.4 brings new features but also code to handle the mentioned issue much saner.

So I guess it will be hard to get it into jaunty-recommended/proposed.

hddrecovery said...

Hi Sebastian,
After a bit of a struggle I now have GnuMed working on Ubuntu with good network access across a linux, windows network in Queensland Aust. Is there anywhere that describes the process of removing the test data data set.

hddrecovery said...

Hi Sebastian,

Great work with GnuMed, I am in Queensland Aust, and have finally got it working on a Ubuntu server supporting a mix of windows desktops across a small network. I am having great difficulty finding out how to clear the test data from Gnumed though. Are there any lists for new users that could help.

Sebastian Hilbert said...

Regarding removing the test data there is now a facility to clean those up.

Details can be provided if needed. If you only care about not seeing the test patients. Those can be disabled from inside GNUmed.