Please test chromium snap as a replacement for the deb

This is a follow-up to that other thread.

The chromium snap is now being built from source, and I believe it is time to give it some serious testing, with the goal of replacing the debs altogether in the near future.

I would like to invite everyone to uninstall the debs and install the snap instead, in an effort to identify any outstanding issues that would prevent such a transition.

Instructions on how to do that:

# remove the debs
sudo apt remove chromium-browser* chromium-codecs-*

# install the snap
sudo snap install chromium

# copy an existing profile
snap run --shell chromium
mkdir -p ~/snap/chromium/current/.config
cp -R ~/.config/chromium ~/snap/chromium/current/.config/

You can now run chromium from the dash/activities/launcher as usual, or from the terminal with snap run chromium. If you had scripts that invoked “chromium-browser”, you will need to change those references to simply “chromium”.

Please report issues you encounter (no matter how minor they seem) here or on launchpad (make sure to specify you’re using the snap package). Here is a list of known issues.

Also feel free to drop a comment here if it just works for you without problems.

Many thanks in advance!

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Thanks - I think removing debs in favor of up to date snaps is a great idea!

Just installed the chromium snap. Some positive things I’ve noticed:

  • very fast installation
  • fast star up time

1 negative thing I’ve noticed:

  • gtk-common-themes only provides adwaita theme:

    selecting communitheme/yaru and ambiance does not change chromiums appearance away from adwaita

Hi @oSoMoN, I’ve been running this or one of its immediate predecessors since I responded to your post on the snapcraft forum several weeks ago.

I’ve nothing to report that isn’t already on the list of known issues except that neither Chrome, the deb version of Chromium or the snap version of Chromium will open your link to the list of known issues. Firefox 62 will though. :confused:

Admission: I still have the .deb installation and I allowed my Google account to synchronise preferences, bookmarks etc. rather than copy my profile as you so helpfully documented.

Thanks @frederik-f for the feedback. That one is a known issue, which I’m actively investigating.


Thanks for the feedback @paulw2u. I am not sure I understand your problem with the link to the list of known issues. When you click that link it opens in firefox? How do other hyperlinks open? What’s your preferred web browser (in the default apps configuration)?

Sorry for not being clear enough @oSoMoN with what I was trying to tell you.

I was saying that if I viewed this thread in Chrome or Chromium (snap or deb) then clicking on your link of known issues just opens a blank page with a very long URL. If I view the page with Firefox and click on the link then the page opens correctly.

BUT: In writing this post and trying to clarify the issue I see that right-clicking on your list of known issues and selecting “Open link in new tab” does open the link as expected and I see a list of known issues on Launchpad.

So a problem for me (and may be others) but it may be not a problem which is related to you releasing a snap version of Chromium. :confused:

Ah, I’m seeing that now, if I open the page in an incognito window, without extensions.
ScriptSafe appears to be blocking whatever buggy rewriting discourse does to track link clicking, which explains why I was not seeing the issue. If the bug also affects chrome then it’s definitely not a snap-specific issue.
ScriptSafe otherwise reports that requests to are blocked, so that one might be the culprit.

I’ve just received an update to version 69.0.3497.92 as a result of issuing the command “sudo snap refresh”. Chromium was in use at the time. As the installation progressed the “in use” indicator on “Dash to dock” disappeared so I closed Chromium in order to start the new version as I had previously seen that eventually Chromium would crash after being updated.

I restarted Chromium and saw a prompt to say that it had not closed down correctly. I was asked if I wished to restore the previous session. I said “yes” and the previous session was restored correctly.

I’m now wondering what would happen if I was in the middle of performing a financial transaction and Chromium was automatically refreshed while the transaction was being processed. :question:

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That’s a known bug in snapd.

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How does the browser theme work if user using a third party theme ? It doesn’t change the theme the except for selected few ?
Copying ~/.config/chromium doesn’t work on this case.

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There’s a known bug where chromium doesn’t use the host theme. Once that’s fixed though, I believe the theme has to be included in the gtk-common-themes snap for the snap to pick it up, so it won’t work with random third-party themes. Not a chromium-specific issue though, all snaps would be affected.

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That’s the case with all snap applications, Firefox, VLC, etc. They all worked well with Ambiance and Radiance themes, but with commnitheme/yaru it has been a issue for a long time now (since Ubutnu 18.04 testing days).


@oSoMoN Hi, the mouse cursor size is very very small in snap chromium browser.

I tested three snaps firefox, chromium, gnome-calculator, gnome-characters and gnome-system-monitor, only firefox and chromium have a very small mouse cursor size.

My environment info:

  • MacBook Pro 2015
  • Ubuntu 18.10 beta

I just upgraded to Eaon and was told the snap version is replacing the deb version. I don’t want snaps, don’t want anything to do with snaps, and especially don’t like them being forced.

How do I remove the snap and go back to the deb/normal version?

I think it’s nice you have it as an option, but the heavy hand of forcing it is not ok.

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Hi @clickwir

This blog post gives a good summary about why Ubuntu does this transition from deb to snap:

In short, building and packaging chromium for all Ubuntu releases is very time-consuming. The snap makes this a lot easier, because now they only have to package it once.

The Ubuntu desktop team thinks that this energy is better spent on improving the Ubuntu desktop instead of simply packaging Chromium. In the long term, this will free up roughly 1/2 of a full-time developer, who can now make other parts of the Ubuntu desktop better. This will benefit all Ubuntu desktop users.

If packaging chromium was easy, the developers would happily continue supporting the deb package, but that is sadly not the case.

If you have concrete technical issues with the snap, please explain them here so the team can take a look at them. The desktop team is working hard to make this transition as easy as possible. The goal is that users don’t notice the difference between the deb and the snap.