Using a Personal Package Archive (PPA), you can distribute software and updates directly to Ubuntu users. Create your source package, upload it and Launchpad will build binaries and then host them in your own apt repository.
That means Ubuntu users can install your packages in just the same way they install standard Ubuntu packages and they'll automatically receive updates as and when you make them.
Every individual and team in Launchpad can have one or more PPAs, each with its own URL.
Packages you publish in your PPA will remain there until you remove them, they're superseded by another package that you upload or the version of Ubuntu against which they're built becomes obsolete.
Note: speak to us about our beta of private PPAs for commercial subscribers.
Size and transfer limits
Each PPA gets 2 GiB of disk space. If you need more space for a particular PPA, ask us.
While we don't enforce a strict limit on data transfer, we will get in touch with you if your data transfer looks unusually high.
When Launchpad builds a source package in a PPA, it creates binaries for:
You may request ARM builds for PPAs that meet the listed conditions. At the moment, these will build on an AMD64 system using qemu-user-static to execute ARM binaries under emulation. Some builds (particularly those that make heavy use of threads) will not yet work this way.
We use an OpenStack cloud for security during the build process, ensuring that each build has a clean build environment and different developers cannot impact on one another's builds accidentally. At the moment, this cloud only has AMD64 compute nodes, limiting the set of architectures it can support. We hope to extend this to other architectures in the future, which will eliminate the need for qemu-user-static.
If you specify a different series the build will fail.
Activating a PPA
Before you can start using a PPA, whether it's your own or it belongs to a team, you need to activate it on your profile page or the team's overview page. If you already have one or more PPAs, this is also where you'll be able to create additional archives.
Your PPA's key
Launchpad generates a unique key for each PPA and uses it to sign any packages built in that PPA.
This means that people downloading/installing packages from your PPA can verify their source. After you've activated your PPA, uploading its first package causes Launchpad to start generating your key, which can take up to a couple of hours to complete.
Your key, and instructions for adding it to Ubuntu, are shown on the PPA's overview page.
Deleting a PPA
When you no longer need your PPA, you can delete it. This deletes all of the PPA's packages, and removes the repository from ppa.launchpad.net. You'll have to wait up to an hour before you can recreate a PPA with the same name.