More about Snap Issues

Hello popey,

I’m late to the discussion but think I can add a different perspective.

My wife and I are just moving to Ubuntu 18.04 from Windows 7. We’re both experienced with computers. But we’re also both disabled with ongoing medical problems so do not want to spend a lot of time dealing with “computer issues” instead of just using it for what we want.

And I apologize but I was unable to find any guide on how to handle the quoted text markup language, so this may look bad when I’m done.

I think snaps would work better in a single user environment but we have a family computer with a lot of shared files. I created an account specially for sharing files.

And not a single snap can access them. For security reasons.

We used KeePass on Windows and found KeePassXC under Ubuntu software. Sadly, its a snap. That means our shared KeePass database, stored in a shared folder, can’t be accessed by KeePassXC. Our current kludge until I can find the time to find a replacement that works is to store the master copy in the public folder and a local copy. Now to work, all we need is every user to remember to replace the master if they make any changes AND let the other use know.

In my opinion this makes the KeePassXC snap too difficult to use. One time forgetting something and important data is lost.

We used VLC as out video player on Windows and installed it from the Ubuntu Software, sadly, it is a snap. The first video I tried to play was the installed by Ubuntu under Examples, a link to another location not accessible to snaps.

Then I tried to add a helper application to Firefox, one living in /usr/bin. And failed but it took awhile for me figure out it was yet another snap problem. Today I tried to save a recipe into a shared folder and failed. I saved it locally and moved it afterward,

Personally I don’t know if snaps are in demand or not. Sand boxing adds security if done right but if it reduces usability too much people will work around it. Me, I’m going to set aside time to find out how to set up the non-snap versions of every snap that doesn’t work with our set up. Time I’d rather spend elsewhere.

This is my first post here at discourse. Let me know how I can improve for future posts.

Luke

Greetings,

  1. Please don’t indent. As you noticed, that creates a block or preformatted text that is hard to read. I have fixed that for you in the post

  2. The thread you jumped into was both stale (2 months old) and on a rather different topic (technical discussion of Firefox snaps). I have moved your post to a new thread to avoid hijacking the previous thread’s topic.

  3. Your KeePass Snap issue seems best discussed at http://snapcraft.io. There seem to be several relevant KeePass threads there already.

  4. I’m not sure what the point of all those quotes are. Your message there is not clear.

Cheers, and welcome to Ubuntu.

Hello ian-weisser

  1. Thank you. Is there a guide for new users on posting? Not the guidelines but on how to work with the site’s posting software.

  2. Okay, how does a new user tell if a thread is stale? I posted here, because I found his discussion while trying to figure out how to get Firefox to do things that are simple, when it isn’t a snap. Most of the thread seemed on the technical merits of the packaging instead of how it impacts “the average user”.

  3. Thanks but I pan to check out the other KeePass ports to find one that isn’t using snap. Snaps seemed designed for a single user system.

  4. I posted underneath the paragraph in the original post I was replying to. I don’t know what markup language the site uses and was reluctant to delete large blocks of text in case I missed some tag. I spent some time searching discourse.ubuntu.com looking for new user guides, specifically on posting / markup language and came up empty.

Until I learn the markup language, would it be acceptable to actually quote the relevant parts of a post I reply to?

Thanks

I like snaps and use the KeepassXC snap. Just today version 2.5.2 was released. and I already have it, automatically. I think that’s great, personally.

…But it is also available as a deb package in the Ubuntu “universe” repository. You may need to enable the universe repo, by opening “Software & Update” and checking the “Community-maintained free and open-source software (universe)” option. Then you will have two entries in Ubuntu Software for KeepassXC. If you open one of the entries, under the “Details” heading there’s a “Source” line, which says either “Snap Store” or “ubuntu-eoan-universe” for me. (I’m on 19.10; on your 18.04 it should say “ubuntu-bionic-universe”.) You could also install it from the terminal with

sudo apt install keepassxc

Same with VLC in fact. There’s a deb package, in the universe repo.

Many (most? almost all?) of the packages in universe are synced from Debian, and Debian isn’t switching away from deb packages anytime soon. So if you want to use deb packages, they are there for you to install.

Edit: Now that I read that KeepassXC release annoucement I linked to, so I see they have a PPA too. So there is an up-to-date KeepassXC deb package you can use if that’s what you want.

EDit 2: I had written “disco” when I mearn “bionic”.

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Yeah, about VLC. I was trying to figure out why I couldn’t play DVD videos even though I had installed the DeCSS package on my laptop. After reading this thread I went back and discovered I had installed VLC from the Software Store and ended up getting the Snap package instead of the deb package. Uninstalled VLC and reinstalled via the command line and now I can watch DVDs on my laptop.

VLC is NOT a good fit for the Snap store as legal hurdles prevent you from including the DeCSS software in the snap package, and it cannot access the DeCSS libraries from the snap container even if it is on the system. Oh, and VLC launches a LOT faster now, too.

Which command did you use ? They have an official PPA, it says that we won’t get major version upgrades through PPA. Only minor security patches.

VLC is still provided as a Debian package, and hence available in the Ubuntu archive. So:

sudo apt install vlc
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Thanks. If I may, will we get updates just like the snap packages ?

No. You will get the updates with a time lag; basically they will enter the development version of Ubuntu when they are made available by the Debian maintainer. Older Ubuntu versions will typically provide older VLC versions.

In other words we are talking about the typical pros ans cons with snaps respective debs.

Hi elcste

I don’t have an opinion on snaps vs other packages. I only learned about the m when things didn’t work. I like built-in security but when that security prevents me from using the software it has to go.

A few minutes ago I figured out how to tell if the software in Ubuntu Software is a snap, check if the source is “Snap Store”.

And I found my installed snaps in Ubuntu Software have a Permissions button (next to Launch and Remove) with some toggles such as accessing removable media. Nothing for shared files / folders.

Thank you for the command line instruction for KeePassXC, we’ve already learned its interface so that will make it easier for us.

Luke

i have filed

https://forum.snapcraft.io/t/should-optical-drives-interface-allow-access-to-hosts-libdvdcss/14921

for you :wink:

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