automatic updates

Hi everyone. I am new here.

Sorry if this topic already exists - I did not find a similar.
I do not see in Manjaro any option to automatically install updates. I see option to download updates only. It would be a very helpful option especially for people that are not experts in computers. For example I installed this os on computers of member of my family. But it seems that it is difficult to encourage people that only use browser from time to run updates manually. Sometimes they are afraid of too many options. At the end I think the better (more safe) option is to enable automatic updates for them - even if it may break the system eventually. What do you think? I really miss this option.

Sorry if such an option already exists but I really could not find it - I am not an expert user.

Regards,
Mario

Linux mario-pc 5.3.12-1-MANJARO

1 Like

Automatic updates is a Windows thing. Manjaro is not forcing updates upon the user. It is always an informed choice.

On Manjaro you get notified on available updates - but the actual updating is always initiated by the user.

It is my hope that this is never going to change.

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We might provide automated updates with Manjaro Solid, which will use docker and snaps. We also experiment with a new technology to simplify system maintenance by simply installing and adding apps. Similar to what you know from Android phones. System files and apps will be updated fully automated. If a new state won't work, simply reboot to the previous working one.

When we have a first version ready you're more than welcome to test it out. This way we hope to get more not so technical users and Windows transfers over to Linux. Additional we plan to make it more easy to run Windows apps on our platform.

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Hi,
@linux-aarhus
I do not want to force this option or enable it by default. I do updates manually, too. But if I for instance install this system on my mother's laptop I would like to enable it. In other case I will need to always ask her if she do the updates (she is not a linux expert or fan :0 ). For people that are familiar with computers it is obvious and easy to manage updates manually but for some older users it is better to have this option.
@ philm
I use ubuntu at work and there are snaps but some application did not work. But for most apps there are no problems.

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So if one of the updates has an issue, say Xorg no longer starts. What is your mother suppose to do?
She hasn't done anything. One day, her PC simply does not boot to the login screen anymore. That would be confusing for her. :slight_smile:

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Exactly my point. As it is now the user is in charge of the system.


If automatic updates were a possibility or could be made a possibility the only way to do it would be to do it like Apple does with macOS.

macOS comes in one container and apps etc are outside this container. The whole container is replaced on updates.

This can be done safely only if you know the hardware and Apple has a select choice of supported hardware.


@nnar10
While keeping a system updated is a healthy approach - there is no big problem in leaving a Manjaro system unaltered for a longer period of time. A Linux system is not vulnerable like a Windows system is.

Your mother probably only uses the laptop for email and web browsing and light leisure - in such case I think it is safe to disable updates notifications - you can then update when it is convenient to you.

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I would suggest to install a different distro which is more stable - in the sense of not changing, allowing only security updates. And these could even be made automatic.

Or set up any of remote desktop solutions and administer the machine from remote. https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Category:Remote_desktop

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I second this. I don't see any reason to not go with Ubuntu, for example. Install the latest LTS, update it to the latest HWE kernel if necessary, and simply forget about it. They don't tend to push updates that can break the system.

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Or Linux Mint with it's patented checkbox "don't break my system" for updates. :wink:

I already created a topic on the forum but did not correctly state the essence of the idea.

In fact, you can achieve greater stability and less headache after upgrades.

If you just create one more branch SuperStable in the repository.

The bottom line is that in this branch SuperStable, for example packets will get in 2-3 months, after they got to the Stable branch.

There's already one. Ubuntu is the name.

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This isn't the first time this feature has been brought up. The main thing you need to realize is the fact that there are occasionally manual steps you need to perform when installing updates, thus automatically installing them can "bork" a system when those steps are ignored.

However, if you really want to take steps to automatically install updates (no one recommends this! - use at your own risk), I've been doing this for a couple years now using this script.

The keys to making this work:

  1. Ensure your remote users have a recent-ish version of Manjaro on a bootable flash drive in a safe place (or access to another computer that can be used to make an up-to-date bootable flash drive)
  2. Making sure your remote users understand how to boot from above flash drive
  3. Users need to be able to follow steps for installing remote-access software in the live environment
  4. Always make sure you install updates before your users (I have a couple of my machines on the testing branch so I can know ahead of time what's coming down the pipe, as well as help catch bugs to prevent them from making it to the stable branch)

Oh boy. I don't think you get it yet.

Arch (from where most of Manjaro's packages flow down) is a moving target because it's a rolling distro. Every single package is being upgraded so they all have to upgrade in step to ensure lack of dependency conflict.

If you hold back packages for 2-3 months, all that means is that 2-3 months' worth of packages are accumulating, which could possibly be more than 1 or 2 GBs worth of downloadable updates.

When you finally release the tap after 2-3 months, you'll be flooded in updates. Say you encounter a problem. Trying to identify and fix the problematic package might be an issue with so many different packages being upgraded and interacting with each other all at once.

The reason Ubuntu and Debian don't have so many upgrades even if you go ages without updating, is because they are fixed release. There are base and foundational packages that don't change throughout the life of that particular release of the distro. So you would probably consider these distros super-stable.

But updates to other non-base packages will stop after a while once the latest versions upstream can no longer be built to run on the older base/foundational packages of that release. So you decide which is more important to you.

Well, while you're right about fixed release model of Debian-based distros, they usually have a upgrade procedure during which dpkg resolves many conflicts. It's a shame that pacman cannot handle differences between conf files but just installs pacnew-like files. Yeah, I know, there are pacdiff and so on thingies... Such an user-friendly vi derivatives. Sorry for OT.

Don't these dpkg commands have to be manually run, e.g. dpkg --configure [whatever]? Not sure though. And you have aptitude as well.

As for pacman, I always assumed the pacnew thing was a deliberate choice, so that users have to take their own steps to check the current and pacnew files.

When updates are being installed a user gets prompt in the same terminal window with a number of options (accept, reject, merge, review, etc) for configs to be updated. Pro options like diff view also available. That's what pacman lacks imho, and pamac - even more.

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