Flatpak 1.10 comes with a new repository format, new commands and more


A few days ago it became known The release of the new stable branch of Flatpak 1.10, what provides a system for creating standalone packages They are not tied to specific Linux distributions and run in a special container that isolates the application from the rest of the system.

Flatpak makes it possible for application developers to simplify the distribution of your programs that are not included in the standard distribution repositories when preparing a universal container without creating separate builds for each distribution.

For security-conscious users, Flatpak allows an inaccurate application to run in a container by providing access only to the user’s network functions and files associated with the application.

For users interested in new products, Flatpak allows them to install the latest trial and stable versions of applications without the need for system changes. For example, currently Flatpak packages are already being compiled for LibreOffice, Midori, GIMP, Inkscape, Kdenlive, Steam, 0 AD, Visual Studio Code, VLC, Slack, Skype, Telegram Desktop, Android Studio, etc.

Main news in Flatpak 1.10

In this new version of Flatpak 1.10 it is highlighted that support for a new repository format has been implemented to speed up the delivery of updates and reduce the size of downloaded data.

The repository is based on OSTreeen technology which uses an index file to identify the content, which is updated with each change. The size of the index file depends on the number of supported packages and architectures.

The new repository format involves separating index files for different architectures, as well as using delta updates to download only parts of the index that have changed since the previous version of the repository.

Also in Flatpak 1.10, the use of incremental updates has reduced traffic by 100 times and has removed restrictions on the support of additional architectures in Flathub.

For example, on Flathub the total size of the index is currently 6.6MB (1.8MB compressed), the x86-64 version is 2.7MB (554KB compressed), and upgrading from a previous version only requires a 20 KB download.

Another change that stands out in the new version is that added a new command “flatpak pin” to set the execution time (It will not be removed if there are no applications that use it). By default, the pinning applies to the explicitly installed runtime, rather than being automatically loaded as a dependency when the application is installed.

With a general update (“flatpak update”) or the removal of individual applications, runtimes are guaranteed unused are automatically deleted that they are not anchored and have an expired shelf life.

In sandbox environments in which access to the network is allowed, access to sockets resolved by systemd is openor, and the “–unset-env” and “–env = FOO =” commands can also remove or empty environment variables.

By updating now, a new version of the application is installed first and only then the previous one is deleted, that is, not installing now does not imply the disappearance of the application.

On the other hand, a improved detection of application paths Similarly, for example “/ org / gnome / sound-juicer” is now mapped to “org.gnome.SoundJuicer”.

Of the other changes that stand out of the new version:

  • The root user can bypass parental control restrictions.
  • Added support for the new standard for formatting containerized OS launch files.
  • Added profile for tcsh.
  • When searching for dependencies, the installed application repository now has a higher priority than other repositories.
  • Improved in-memory caching of the repository index.
    Specifying “–filesystem = /” is prohibited.
  • New APIs added: flatpak_installation_list_pinned_refs, flatpak_transaction_set_disable_auto_pin, flatpak_transaction_set_include_unused_uninstall_ops, flatpak_transaction_operation_get_subpaths, flatpak_transaction_operation_autires_requires.
  • Compatible with the pending GCC 11.
  • Improved PulseAudio socket detection in non-typical configurations.

Finally, if you are interested in knowing more about it, you can consult the details In the following link.

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