Snap Package for Linux distribution

proposal

#1

Hi, so I have been using Julia for about 7-8 months now, and I have noticed that while there is a package for CentOS/RedHat/Fedora, I noticed that there is no longer an official julia apt package. Now, Ubuntu’s maker, Canonical, has been really pushing this new thing called Snaps. They are now universal across pretty much all the major Linux distributions. I was wondering if there was any talk about making an official Julia Snap package, then all Linux distro’s have a simple setup?


#2

Yes, it’s been discussed recently here, but no work has been done so far. The main issue is that only recent distributions support Snap or Flatpak, so we will still need to provide generic binary tarballs anyway. But a contribution to support Snap would certainly be appreciated (either as a community-maintained effort or even maybe as an official download). It appears that a simple way of creating a package would be to simply re-bundle the binary tarballs without even rebuilding Julia.


#3

I have been wary of snap for a while (yet another damn update mechanism), but I have been using it for 3 months now and it is really seamless. Once you authenticate, you no longer need to be root, and updating is really simple (snap refresh).

It is my impression that many FOSS projects that release more frequently than 3-6 months have decided that they need something in between tarballs (a bit too manual) and distro packages (high maintenance for all the distros out there) went with snap.

The only issue I can see for Julia is the confinement model; which restricts file system access to $HOME. But if I understand correctly, there is a classic mode which would get around this globally (but it requires manual review from the snap organization), and in any case, the user can override this so maybe this is not much of a hassle.