And in response to Ubuntu Snaps...

KGIII

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For your reading enjoyment:


Some of the article is inaccurate. The flavors themselves made the decision to support only Snaps by default, but pundits are gonna pundit in hopes of fostering outrage. I believe it impacted exactly one flavor, as none of the others supported Flatpack by default. But, we gotta have our daily outrage so it might as well be at Canonical. I also like the colorful language like 'rival'.

Ah well... Judge for yourselves but (here at least) let's keep it civil.
 


For your reading enjoyment:


Some of the article is inaccurate. The flavors themselves made the decision to support only Snaps by default, but pundits are gonna pundit in hopes of fostering outrage. I believe it impacted exactly one flavor, as none of the others supported Flatpack by default. But, we gotta have our daily outrage so it might as well be at Canonical. I also like the colorful language like 'rival'.

Ah well... Judge for yourselves but (here at least) let's keep it civil.
I don't see what the big deal is. It's not like you can't use flatpaks. There's even a tool called unsnap that will convert your snaps to flatpaks. I've never tried it in full disclosure.

And anyway, the move doesn't affect "based on" distros like Mint, which I prefer anyway.
 
I don't see what the big deal is.

It's just the latest news cycle, I suppose. We all need to pick a side and fight about it, 'cause that generates more hits on websites. I see some similarities between this and when systemd started rolling down the pipes, though I expect this to have marginally less gnashing of teeth and fewer spittle-flecked monitors. (There's bound to be some spittle flecked monitors, as some evidence suggests.)
 
It's just the latest news cycle, I suppose. We all need to pick a side and fight about it, 'cause that generates more hits on websites. I see some similarities between this and when systemd started rolling down the pipes, though I expect this to have marginally less gnashing of teeth and fewer spittle-flecked monitors. (There's bound to be some spittle flecked monitors, as some evidence suggests.)
Teeth gnashing, spittle flecked monitors, ruptured blood vessels oh yeah!
 
Teeth gnashing, spittle flecked monitors, ruptured blood vessels oh yeah!

The first release of Snaps was in like 2014. Snaps have been installed by default for at least a couple of the past LTS builds. There have been countless articles and announcements. Yet, you're still gonna get people saying that 'they sneaked this into Ubuntu!!!!'.

And, while you can get away without Snaps in Ubuntu, they did make Advantage (now Pro, I guess - or a part of what's now Pro) a Snap app. As near as I can tell, you can not use Snaps otherwise - but if you want to use the Pro/Advantage (with kernel live patching, free for five personal devices) you'll need Snaps enabled.

You can substitute anything else, but not that.

And most users haven't got the foggiest when it comes to it - but they'll start learning about Pro in their terminal soon enough.

While I guess I'm allowed to speak on behalf of either Ubuntu or Lubuntu, my opinions are my own. At the end of the day, I really, really don't care how my software is packaged - so long as it works. Snaps have some neat benefits, but I really haven't relied on any of those benefits.

It seems I mostly know about stuff that breaks. LOL As such, I really don't know much about Snaps (other than what you can learn from reading). They seem to Just Work® for me. Firefox was a bit slow early on, but only when opening. That was fixed on the Mozilla end. Mozilla made this choice and it'd be laughable to think Ubuntu has any control over the Mozilla Foundation.

But, you're going to hear all sorts of crap I suspect.

It starts with the claim that Ubuntu *forced* the official flavors to do something. Nope... There are all sorts of reasons why the official flavors agreed - with the biggest being support issues (especially with defaults) and an ability to throw developer time at it.

But, I'm just yelling in the wind now. The pundits have taken over.

Hmm... This is much longer than I expected it to be.
 
I'll just say I smiled. :)

I agree (not that my opinion really matters I suspect) with everything said. I've not yet read the article on Zdnet but really have little interest in it, and I know I'll pretty sure to be reading it on my local Saturday to write a summary for the UWN (Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter), and that's easier if I ignore it until that read.

I've been involved with Ubuntu News since mid-2015 and I've been loosely involved with two flavors since 2018, one of them asked me to join which I did (thus reducing my time with the other flavor). My involvement with Ubuntu has only increased since then, with me still being involved with Ubuntu News (so I see almost all public stuff), as well as teams since then (allowing me to see various public & some non-public stuff).

In that time I've not seen anything forced, at most suggested where there is always a very clear opportunity for anyone to express their concerns/issues with any suggestions, and that are always addressed, and any decision made on mostly technical grounds.

I've been extremely impressed with Ubuntu community, and most people involved within it. Probably that's why I'm still involved with it, when my real initial desire was to contribute to Debian, after all I was mostly a Debian user at the time.
 
Well I suspect the format that will win out in the end is the one the Developers choose not the end user. One of the main beefs software Developers have had with the Linux infrastructure is that they must write code for different packaging systems. .deb, .rpm and that software written in one will not work well on others systems. So they have to double or triple their efforts to accomplish the simple. And Snaps, Flatpacks and also Appimages are all attempts to solve that problem. But the the different distros can not agree on which one is the best for the task at hand. In the end one will rise to the top or someone will come up with another possibility time will tell.
 
As far as I'm aware, Snaps are specific to Ubuntu, so naturally the 'flavors' concur, being based on it. FlatPak is promoted by the RedHat cartel....so if anything ends up getting used as the basis of a 'universal' app store, I would expect it to be this.

RedHat usually get their way in the end, since they're one of the founding members of the Linux Foundation, contribute a LOT of stuff to the kernel, AND train most of the software engineers.

Personally, I don't like either of them, since both insist on a 'framework' being installed BEFORE they'll even condescend to function. Me, I prefer AppImages....


Mike. ;)
 
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There are all sorts of reasons why the official flavors agreed - with the biggest being support issues (especially with defaults) and an ability to throw developer time at it.
A Linux podcast I listen to was discussing this as well. One person said it felt a little "Microsofty" what they're doing and another said he didn't care either way. They talked about the support issue. Anything they provide by default they need to be able to support, so they chose Snaps.

What are the supposed shortcomings of Snaps? It's the one thing I never hear talked about. Or is it just they perceived notion it's being forced on users? It's not like they are forcing advertisements on us like M$ does. Now that's an outrage I can get behind!
 
You can disable that.

Yup. It's not even hard to disable.

I've been involved with Ubuntu News since mid-2015 and I've been loosely involved with two flavors since 2018, one of them asked me to join which I did (thus reducing my time with the other flavor).

I think my AskUbuntu account is from 2015 or so. I got really involved in 2020, largely due to freed up time during the pandemic and a desire to give back on another level.

I've been extremely impressed with Ubuntu community, and most people involved within it. Probably that's why I'm still involved with it ...

I can only agree with this. I was quite cautious getting started, but I don't regret getting involved. It does eat up some of my time, but that's okay. I'll survive. It's also very little time when compared to some of the others involved. For me, it's usually less than a couple of hours every day, often less than an hour 'cause I've got my testing process figured out.

What are the supposed shortcomings of Snaps?

Well, they can be slower to start but not significantly slow. They do create loopback devices that clutter up some terminal functions. They do take up some extra space - though a good part of that is them keeping a copy of the previous Snap so that you can restore from it.

Finally, and this is the biggest valid complaint I can think of (and is how I understand it), Canonical has control - specifically the server providing the Snaps/Snap Store is not opensource. It'd technically be possible for an alternative store to appear, but it'd be (from what I understand) a rather difficult task.

I do not know why that's not opensource. I am not going to speculate. If it's for security reasons, Ubuntu should know better. Security by obscurity is not really security!

Snaps are opensource. Making a Snap is opensource. But, as I understand it, the server/store (I guess you could call it a repository) is not opensource. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but that's what folks were complaining about a while back. I haven't given it all that much attention.
 
I found this video helpful on Snaps it is a year old but still good

As a person who makes and distributes a few distros, do you plan on adding Snaps at any point in the near future? (This needn't lock you in, you can always point out that you had no such plans either direction in the future.)
 
the server providing the Snaps/Snap Store is not opensource

This one surprises me the most. I use closed source and proprietary software but wouldn't expect it from Canonical.

You may have changed my mind on Snaps. :confused:

>>Canonical has control<< does sound a little "Microsofty"
 
Canonical has control
Ubuntu should know better. Security by obscurity is not really security!
the server/store (I guess you could call it a repository) is not opensource
And, there you have it. Not a bad nutshell at all, @KGIII

Three lines, says it all. ....in fact just those three words will do it....Canonical has control.

Just think for a second or two, of at least some of the reason/s you may have left microsoft behind you.....

microsoft has control

familiar thought?
 
Canonical has control.

If you're using Ubuntu, Canonical already has control. They decide what software makes it into the main repos, when that gets updated, what servers they'll operate, how they'll roll out updates, etc...

The same is true with Mint, Fedora, RHEL, etc... Whoever is in charge at your favorite distro has control over your system. They have *root* control, pretty much, 'cause they control what's in the system, what's in your updates, etc...

Historically speaking, aside from a gaffe or two (as with all companies), Canonical have been good Linux stewards. So, no... No, I see it as mostly people looking for excuses when they can't find technical excuses to be outraged.

And no, no most of us don't really control our system. We install software from trusted repositories without checking it ourselves (a task that'd be neigh on impossible). We blindly install updates, at best reading the names of what's to be updated. We don't even read the release notes, most of us. We install our favorite distro, blindly trusting them to do the right thing.

But no... For some reason THIS is a bridge too far!!!
 
Myself and @f33dm3bits have been going back and forth regarding the flatpak vs snaps, etc... I think we're on the same page when it comes to choosing flatpaks over snaps. But ultimately, Canonical is trying to appeal a lot to the corporate world and so they are looking for ways to add value that will make their distribution more appealing. I guess to some extent it is working for some orgs, at work we are a predominately an Ubuntu shop.
 
It is my understanding that Snaps can make changes to the software on my Linux system without my explicit authorization. That is a deal-breaker for me. It is as simple as that. I have other objections to Snaps, but they pale in comparison.

@KGIII is correct when he says that we often install software with superuser privileges "... from trusted repositories without checking it ourselves ..." He is correct, but I reserve absolute control over whether and when I want to install those updates. Nobody gets to decide that without my prior authorization.

He is also correct when he says that it is effectively impossible to check all of the software that we install from trusted repositories. Most of the time, that is true for me, too.

At the same time, I retain and insist on the right to check for myself first. There are lesser alternatives to performing a thorough code review, such as relying on a trusted reviewer, waiting to learn if the update has unexpected side effects, etc. (For my firewall, I rely on a forum website like this one to see what happened to others before updating my own, depending on the nature of the update.) Furthermore, it is not beneath me to review actual code changes before installing an update, especially in areas where I have experience and knowledge. I admit, I do not do it often.

Edit, later: Fixed minor typo.
 
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I wholeheartedly agree that Canonical already has control.....and that mint also has and fedora etc etc etc...

I truly believe that there is a "Fear" floating around that Canonical has its eyes set on assuming greater control.....in other words, Canonical's past behaviour, in some way, has reminded people of Microsoft.

Furthermore, I actually know very little about all the ins and outs.....in fact I know next to nothing.....about the nitty gritty which surrounds what appears to be such an emotive subject.

I do, however, watch people's body language,(when that is possible) and their word language.....which words they choose to use in certain situations......their immediate reactions to other's comments....etc etc, etc..... And that leads me to stay away from the nitty gritty of the Ubuntu distro.

It is a no brainer to suggest that somewhere in the greater Linux distro maze, there will be at least one company/corporation etc etc that will try to repeat microsoft's performance/behaviour/achievements ....... After all, the big motivator in such a scenario, is and always has been.....$money$

Enuff.

This debate is circular.
 
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