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Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-13 18:59
by Wheelerof4te
Link to the article

Ubuntu developer Olivier Tilloy mentioned that the transition from deb to snap is not being debated though, as it's "a firm plan that will eventually save a lot of engineering, builder and maintenance resources by removing the need to build every new version of chromium on all supported Ubuntu releases".

So, they are starting to transition even bigger applications to their snap format. How long before most of software packaged for Ubuntu ends up as snap?
Are they preparing for potential breakaway from Debian at some point in the future?
Sure, Chromium is a big program and hard to compile, I get that. But look at Debian! For how many archs does Debian package Chromium? And all of it spread across 3 branches.
I think Ubuntu devs are getting lazy and too invested in their own little projects. THe gap between them and the rest of the free software community is becoming wider every year.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-13 19:17
by 4D696B65
Wheelerof4te wrote:Are they preparing for potential breakaway from Debian at some point in the future?

I thought they did that over a decade ago when they embraced non-free and became binary non-compatible.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-13 19:26
by Wheelerof4te
^Technically, that's true. I was refering to a more concrete distancing, like complete distancing from .deb packages. A lot of packages in their "Universe" repo that are just repackaged Debian packages. Some are even just clean packages from Sid frozen at one point.

I am more concerned for their users, because Ubuntu has become a face of all Linux distros, at least to total newbs.
There are significant problems with snap packages, from performance issues, to theming. And every snap needs to be mounted before starting. Imagine hundreds of mount points acting like user applications.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 12:05
by None1975
Wheelerof4te wrote:So, they are starting to transition even bigger applications to their snap format. How long before most of software packaged for Ubuntu ends up as snap?

Neither will it happen nor anything. And the theme is similar to the spread of rumors...
Wheelerof4te wrote:Are they preparing for potential breakaway from Debian at some point in the future?

Ubuntu has long been incompatible with Debian.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 13:44
by Danielsan
I am firmly convinced that Debian needs to change its internal behavior changing its package system, it was designed almost 20 years ago and the current scenario is totally different respect the one Ian Murdock had to address in order to create Debian. I think Debian must look toward Nix and Guix, those two provide modern, clean and efficient package managers that will not change Debian as we know but they will make Debian better.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 15:17
by Head_on_a_Stick
Danielsan wrote:I am firmly convinced that Debian needs to change its internal behavior changing its package system

What's wrong with APT?

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 15:19
by Bulkley
Danielsan wrote:I am firmly convinced that Debian needs to change its internal behavior changing its package system . . .


Interesting thought. It was apt-get and the massive repositories that drew me to Debian in the first place and kept me here all these years. I remember the frustration of "RPM dependency Hell." The first thing I look at when evaluating other distros is package management.

One modern option I like is "app" style packages that can be opened and run without installing. It enables testing and using programs without commitment, without disturbing the base system.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 15:42
by Wheelerof4te
Danielsan wrote:I am firmly convinced that Debian needs to change its internal behavior changing its package system,

APT is fine, it has served me well. It is easy to learn. I am not a Debian developer, so I won't pretend that I know how the packaging system should change.
What I do know is that snap is not an answer.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 15:53
by Danielsan
Head_on_a_Stick wrote:What's wrong with APT?

Wheelerof4te wrote:APT is fine, it has served me well. It is easy to learn. I am not a Debian developer, so I won't pretend that I know how the packaging system should change.
What I do know is that snap is not an answer.

It is not just APT, it is the whole behavior:

Deb packages are hard to create; Deb packages don't provide roll back system; you need root to install packages and you can't install packages per users; you can't confine or containerize packages by default; you can't install easily different version of the same package, you can't have delta updates (not sure if Nix or Guix do it). I mean DPKG and APT were fine twenty years, ten years ago, but not today. We switched from sysvint to systemd for the same reason as well as we are switching from Wayland to Xorg. Simply most of the paradigms of twenty or ten years ago aren't anymore suitable for today. Even Ubuntu today could be delivered with Snap without any deb.

Debian can decide to be passive like happened with systemd or active deciding for its future by itself. If tomorrow Ubuntu is delivered with just snap I am more than sure that Debian will do the same as well. I don't have nothing against Snap but Canonical, and probably Snap is better of DEB/APT even if the maintainers are an inalienable resource, but, from my point of view, if your core parts are all on the hands of the big names you will lose your independence as well as your identity.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 16:03
by 4D696B65
Danielsan wrote: you need root to install packages and you can't install packages per users
This is the best thing about apt
Danielsan wrote:Debian can decide to be passive like happened with systemd or active deciding for its future by itself.
really? :roll:

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 16:17
by Wheelerof4te
Danielsan wrote:If tomorrow Ubuntu is delivered with just snap I am more than sure that Debian will do the same as well.

Not really, no. Debian is a base for Ubuntu, it's not vice-versa. Also, APT doesn't need to conteinerize applications or install only for users. Linux has an eons-old file permission system in place.
Danielsan wrote:Debian can decide to be passive like happened with systemd or active deciding for its future by itself.

Please don't involve systemd in this, no one mentioned systemd and this is not a thread for that kind of discussion.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 16:30
by Danielsan
4D696B65 wrote:This is the best thing about apt


Why?
If I install unstable software on my user just because I want take advantage of some features or for testing without breaking the system and without invoking root to do it, I believe it is a great things.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 16:43
by Danielsan
Wheelerof4te wrote:Not really, no. Debian is a base for Ubuntu, it's not vice-versa. Also, APT doesn't need to conteinerize applications or install only for users. Linux has an eons-old file permission system in place.


Mark Shuttlework has declared in several occasions that them are ready to deliver Ubuntu with just Snaps, clearly the bug triage at 0 cost made by Debian is too valuable to throw it into the garbage.

While fix permissions to make a software available for a group instead of another is not is easy as just installing what you need directly per users. Other distros, like OpenSuse, use policies to achieve the same because managing groups to restrict software availability for user isn't really practical.

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 17:05
by 4D696B65
Danielsan wrote:
4D696B65 wrote:This is the best thing about apt


Why?
If I install unstable software on my user just because I want take advantage of some features or for testing without breaking the system and without invoking root to do it, I believe it is a great things.

if it is your computer, do what you want
if it is a server owned by your employer, he/she may have other ideas what you can and cannot install

Re: Canonical goes full snap, Chromium is next

PostPosted: 2019-06-14 17:20
by Bulkley
4D696B65 wrote:if it is your computer, do what you want
if it is a server owned by your employer, he/she may have other ideas what you can and cannot install


+1.