Linux Tip. How to enable and use Flatpak

Flatpak is a new universal packaging format, on par with the Canonical Snap system it’s a way for a more secure and unified way to deliver applications on Linux. Easy installation, no security holes, and a Linux-wide distribution system because it can work on every Linux distro.

Flatpak is basically a cross-platform package management system that aims to makes the work for developers and users easier. A Flatpak application build can be used in almost all the Linux distributions without any modification to the bundle.

Flatpak. A new world for application developers

Start using Flatpak and install from a growing collection of apps

Enabling Flatpak on a Linux system is very easy, you just need to install Flatpak for your distro and enable the Flatpak repository to download the apps from. Flathub is the best place to get Flatpak apps.

The steps are different and they depend on your Linux distro, you can use the super-easy Quick Flatpak setup tool from this address, and as for example to enable Flatpak on Ubuntu-based distro the steps are the following.

Install Flatpak

To install Flatpak on Ubuntu 18.10 (Cosmic Cuttlefish) or later, simply run:

$ sudo apt install flatpak

With older Ubuntu versions, the official Flatpak PPA is the recommended way to install Flatpak. To install it, run the following in a terminal:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:alexlarsson/flatpak
$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt install flatpak

Install the Software Flatpak plugin

The Flatpak plugin for the Software app makes it possible to install apps without needing the command line. To install, run:

$ sudo apt install gnome-software-plugin-flatpak

Note: the Software app is distributed as a Snap since Ubuntu 20.04 and does not support the graphical installation of Flatpak apps. Installing the Flatpak plugin will also install a deb version of Software and result in two Software apps being installed at the same time.

Add the Flathub repository

Flathub is the best place to get Flatpak apps. To enable it, run:

$ flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub

Then restart your system to complete setup, restart your system. Now all you have to do is install some apps!

References and resources

Flatpak. The future of Linux Apps

Flathub. Apps for Linux, right here

Using Flatpak on Ubuntu and Other Linux Distributions

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