Ubuntu Snap update SPOILED the World Cup

Goodbye Ubuntu, Goodbye Snaps

I missed two goals in the World Cup Finals because of this. It’s not the first time Snap has been a problem, but it’s most definitely the last straw.

What happened?

I was happily watching the second half of the Fifa World Cup Final, using “ShowMax” – a South African paid streaming platform, on Firefox. All of a sudden the screen freezes and the Firefox Snap decides to update. I couldn’t even close the window to open up Chromium.

In a panic I force shut down the laptop but somehow the boot-up wasn’t recognizing my hard drive anymore?? I don’t know what happened there, it works now, maybe I pressed the power button too many times – I was IN A HURRY.

I ended up watching the rest of the game on my phone.

Go Argentina! If my team hadn’t won I would have probably been even more pissed.

It’s the last straw Ubuntu – I have heard that Snaps have added an “Experimental” option to ignore updates but that’s not good enough. I’m moving to something that gives me full control. You can say what you like about me – It’s my fault for using the “Schedule updates for Sunday night” option and forgetting about it, or not using the new “Ignore updates” feature I only found out about on Reddit last week, but I’m done.

From now on, I love Arch

I am going back to Arch. My computer is my computer, and I don’t care anymore how much work it takes, I’m going to take charge so nothing like this ever happens again.

Look forward to a follow-up article where I rant about annoying Arch flaws and insane breaking changes in updates. \s

Update: Wow I actually made the front page of hacker news! Lots of discussion on the topic here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=34041272

18 thoughts on “Ubuntu Snap update SPOILED the World Cup”

  1. Hi,

    This article has no place on the internet.

    Today, you have the ability to easily configure how Firefox browser and Ubuntu OS manage their own updates (automatic, manual, delayed, setting frequency).

    It’s up to you to apply the configuration that suits you best.

    It’s a bit of a harsh and non-neutral judgment to say “I’m out, because Ubuntu did shit, when I didn’t configure it well”.
    It’s not cool to assert that Ubuntu forced you to miss your soccer match.
    It’s more because of you, as end user, who has not read the documentation to configure the OS & browser according to your own needs.

    This is a sign of disrespect for the people who built this OS, much more reliable than a Windows.

  2. Have you tried nixos? I like that every update is just a new “generation”, which you can choose to boot into at your convenience, and if that doesn’t work for any reason, you can just boot into the previous generation, and fix the latest your convenience. Although having said that, I’ve never even had to use this facility. It just works.

    1. I would love to try nixos. Right now I really need to get to the point where I can get some work done and arch or Ubuntu are the distros I’m familiar with. From what I’ve heard though, nix sounds like the future

  3. Looolz

    better install brave browser in Ubuntu, btw ubuntu is far stable than arch, you are looking for stable reliable system, use Linux Mint, OpenSUSE, PopOS, Zorin, etc not arch or arch derivative, arch is bleeding edge distro.

  4. It’s a bit more work these days, but you can still remove all the snaps from Ubuntu. Arch wasn’t stable enough for me personally, but go for it if it suits you. People often forget about it, but good ol’ vanilla Debian is pretty appealing. Frankly, snaps aren’t ready for software like Firefox… they still use some pretty unsavory work arounds for the isolation and there are tons of programs that currently don’t work with the Firefox snap because they depend on loading files from /tmp, which the snap can’t access. So Firefox has resorted to writing some things to a user’s Downloads folder instead… it’s bad. That said, I don’t dislike all snaps. I’ve even published one, and can say it is far far less work than being a Debian package maintainer… which is good and bad. Less auditing and easier to get in, but higher potential for shady actors and often less thoroughly tested (can be bad for users…). You can sort of think of it like AUR in some ways.

    A major problem I had with Arch was updates that broke Python… and Pacman is written in Python… so fixing that was ugly, really ugly. I don’t believe package managers should ever be written in a scripting language. Only ran Arch in the first place because I needed the bleeding edge kernel for my motherboard. The documentation made it mostly a pleasant experience aside from updates, which I indeed dreaded and only did when I had time set aside to fix things.

    1. I hear you, had similar issues with arch in the past, but at least I’m familiar with it. I haven’t tried to publish anything for Linux desktop, maybe one day I will see that side of the story

  5. Linux Mint is also a good alternative for people who want to stay in the dpkg, apt repository system. There are no Snaps and Mint is more focused on a great desktop experience than Ubuntu is these days. Ubuntu pretty much gave up on the desktop when they switched to Gnome.

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