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The Electronic AppWrapper  was the first commercial electronic software distribution catalog to collectively manage encryption and provide digital rights for apps and digital media(issue #3 was the app store originally demonstrated to Steve Jobs at NeXTWorld EXPO). While a Senior Editor at NeXTWORLD Magazine, Simson Garfinkel, rated The Electronic AppWrapper 4 3/4 Cubes (out of 5), in his formal review. Paget’s Electronic AppWrapper was named a finalist in the highly competitive InVision Multimedia ’93 awards in January, 1993 and won the Best of Breed award for Content and Information at NeXTWORLD Expo in May, 1993.

Many Linux distributions and other Unix-like systems provide a tool known as a package manager, which allows a user to automatically manage the software installed on their systems (including both operating system components and third-party software) using command line tools—new software (and the packages required for its proper operation) can be retrieved from local or remote mirrors and automatically installed in a single process. Notable package managers in Unix-like operating systems have included pkgsrc (1997), Debian’s APT (1998), YUM, and Gentoo’s Portage (which unlike most package managers, distributes packages containing source code that is automatically compiled instead of executables). Some package managers have graphical front-end software which can be used to browse available packages and perform operations, such as Synaptic (which is often used as a front-end for APT).

In 1996, the SUSE Linux distribution has YaST as frontend for its own app repository. Mandriva Linux has urpmi with GUI frontend called Rpmdrake. Fedora and Red Hat Enterprise Linux has YUM in 2003 as a successor of YUP (developed at Duke University for Red Hat Linux).

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