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Linux Package Management
Updated  2022-August-25

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2022-May-4  Published this evolving⁠[1] article.

 

Some apps I install on a Linux system

Since November 2021, I’ve been trying Linux distributions and writing about that on Notes About Choosing a Linux Distribution⁠🐧︎. On each distro⁠[2] that I try, I install…

On every distro I’ve tried so far, it’s been a pain to figure out how to get a recent version of these apps.

Below is the algorithm I’m currently using to install an app on a Linux distro.

 

0. See if the app is already installed

Before I use a package manager to install an app, I see if it’s already installed by trying to launch it from either the built-⁠in app launcher or a command line. For example, to see if gvim (GUI Vim) is installed, I try to run the following two commands from a command-⁠line prompt.

gvim
vim -g

 

1. Try the distribution’s default package manager

If it’s not already installed, I first try the distribution’s default package manager. For example, on openSUSE I install gvim with this command:

sudo zypper install gvim

 

On some Linux distributions, the GVim package is called vim-⁠gtk or vim-⁠gtk3 rather than gvim.

 

2. Look at the app’s primary website

If the default package manager…

  • does not have the app

  • or does not have a recent version of the app

…then, I go to the app’s website and see what they suggest.

 

Because I use lots of Linux distros, I usually prefer distro-independent package managers (Flatpak, Homebrew, Snap, etc.).

 

2.1. Flatpak and Flathub

qutebrowser.org’s Installing qutebrowser suggests using Flathub. Details are at…

 

To learn about Flatpak and Flathub in general, see:

 

💡
To update a flatpak-⁠installed app, you can usually use your system’s software store, for example KDE Discover.

 

2.2. Snap

Hugo’s Install Hugo article suggests the following Snap command.

snap install hugo --channel=extended

To learn about Snap, see snapcraft.io.

 

2.3. Homebrew on Linux

Hugo’s Install Hugo article also suggests this Homebrew command:

brew install hugo

This installs extended Hugo. To upgrade this brew-⁠installed hugo, run:

brew upgrade hugo

To learn about Homebrew on Linux, see docs.brew.sh/Homebrew-on-Linux.

 

3. Look at Repology

Information about qutebrower’s packaging status is at repology.org/project/qutebrowser/versions and right here in this Repology badge:

Packaging status

 

Information about Hugo’s packaging status is at repology.org/project/hugo-sitegen/versions and right here in this Repology badge:

Packaging status

 

See also

Endnotes


1. Many Infinite Ink articles, including this one, are evergreen and regularly updated.
2. In Linux land, distro and distribution are synonyms.

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