SSM – Simple Software Manager

Updated: 2006-06-23-19:02

If you have been looking for a software management system which:

then SSM may be right for you.

Note: SSM is not a replacement for RPM, dpkg, lpp, and other native package managers. Their purpose and that of SSM are different but compatible. But, SSM does things that these products do not.

SSM is built around the following simple concepts:

The following 8 step procedure will let you test out SSM in your own account in just a few minutes1:




Download the latest2 ssm installer (in the “simpleswmgr” section):
ssm-installer_7.6_all.ssm .

The easy-to-use, one-step installer.


Download the latest SSM (in the “simpleswmgr” section):
ssm_7.6_all.ssm .

The SSM package itself.


Download the sample package (in the “extras” section):
helloworld_1.0_all.ssm .

A sample package which provides a shell script called to print “Hello World” and sets the HELLOWORLD environment variable to “loaded”.


Install ssm:

$ sh ssm-installer_7.6_all.ssm -d $HOME/ssm --ssmRepositoryUrl `pwd` --user

Using the installer, we install the SSM package which is in the current directory by pointing the installer to it (using the --ssmRepositoryUrl option), and we update the profile/startup scripts $HOME/.profile and $HOME/.login (using the --user option).

The installer expects to install the SSM package of the same version.


Update your current shell session by either 1) logging out and logging back in or 2) by source'ing your shell profile. For sh-type shells:

$ . $HOME/.profile

For csh-type shells:

$ source $HOME/.login

A full logout and login is best.

The files containing configuration information for your environment (e.g., to know where programs are located on the disk) have been updated but your current session has not.


Install the sample package (assuming the sample package is in the current directory):

$ ssm install -d $HOME/ssm -p helloworld_1.0_all -u `pwd`

Install the sample package.


Publish the sample package:

$ ssm publish -d $HOME/ssm -p helloworld_1.0_all

Make the package automatically available.


Run the sample program:


If you were able to run the ssm program above, then you should be able to run the sample program, also.


List the packages installed under SSM that you created:

$ ssm listd -d $HOME/ssm

The SSM package and the helloworld packages should be listed.

Refer to the documentation for more information on using SSM and how to build packages for use under SSM.

As well, the Simple Software Manager Notes document is worth reading if you are interested in why certain design decisions were made for SSM and some HOWTOs which may help in using SSM.

To clean out the SSM installation performed by the above procedure:

  1. Remove the lines added by ssm-installer to the $HOME/.profile and $HOME/.login scripts. There is no adverse behavior if this is not done.

  2. Remove the $HOME/ssm directory.

1Python 2.3 or later is required. See the documentation for details on using SSM to install and use Python.

2If the latest versions of the required packages are not yet available on the Sourceforge machines, try again later.