DLN Xtend 22: Why Gaming on Linux Matters, Linux Mint Forbids Snaps?


Really liked it! Good flow between hosts. It might have been me but I heard a couple of times that people would talk over each other


This episode was my first time discovering Xtend!!! I appreciated the candid convo and expansion on DLN topics. However, I was disappointed to hear so much “hate” (deeply negative tones) on Linux Mint… which struck me as strange that it comes so heavily from people who do NOT use Linux Mint. (Meaning: People it does not effect, directly or even indirectly)

Perhaps as long as Mint’s user base is comfortable with the stance their distro is taken, no real harm is done, right?

Sadly, the tone set during the Linux Mint portion reminded me of my early linux days hearing the community disparagingly discuss Unity. As a ‘newbie’, I just figured everyone knew what they were talking about, and that whoever Canonical was just lost touch with their user base. As a result, I never even gave Unity a fair shake, instead, opting to get my feet wet in Mint.

Now, many years later, I have been going back and enjoying the fire out of Unity’s unique and creative interface. I have a feeling I would have been a mainstream Linux User long ago had I not stumbled upon such negativism publicly denouncing what, in retrospect, was just a Distro doing what a Distro has a perfect right to do.

Simply putting forth “Mint can do what mint can do, but I will hate them for it… especially since I use a different distro anyway” sends a negative message, I feel. :-S

Lets get a more positive, upbeat tone about our Distros, and I think you’ll find a more positive and upbeat community coming together. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the content, as it makes the workday go by quickly. While I’m sorry this had to be my 1st Xtend podcast I caught, I look forward to exploring the other episodes you’ve worked so hard on. :slight_smile:

Just my 2 cents.

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Loki games! Damn, I had so many great memories from them in college. I may have been one of the dozen or so fans who bought everything they had. Haha.


I think there is a disconnect here from what you are saying and who that should be applied to.

You are saying a distro has every right to do something they want to do with their own distro. Your example was Unity and how people hated on Canonical for doing Unity. You are correlating that to what happened here with Mint but I think you are skipping a very vital element to what happened here.

Here’s a brief flowchart of what happened:

  1. Canonical decided that Linux App Distribution wasn’t good and they decided to fix it.
  2. They create Snaps.
  3. The community ignores all the benefits of Snaps and throws hatred at Canonical for having the nerve to replace DEBs. (which they aren’t doing)
  4. Canonical decides that they think Snaps are at a point that they can use the format they invented to optimize their workload to avoid developing an excessive amount of packages for a web browser, Chromium, that is not even their primary browser.
  5. Linux Mint decides to throw hate and claims of sneaking backdoors into Mint at Canonical for doing something in their own distro related to the work that they do without having any obligation to do it. They could just not bother packaging Chromium . . . which is exactly what Mint does or in this case doesnt do . . . or they can optimize that workload with using Snaps.
  6. This change for Chromium was exclusive to Ubuntu because that’s the only distro they make and the only thing their infrastructure is intended to support. (even the Flavours are not required to follow any decision Canonical makes)
  7. Linux Mint refuses to make their own infrastructure so they piggyback off of Ubuntu’s so Canonical will pay for the work and the bandwidth.
  8. DLN Xtend expresses their disappointment with how Linux Mint handled the situation by attacking Canonical and claiming Canonical was trying to infiltrate their distro.

So I am confused because you took their disappointment in Linux Mint as hate for Linux Mint while in a way defending the hate that Linux Mint is throwing at Canonical for something Canonical did for their own distro.

  1. Linux Mint is the instigator of the whole thing
  2. Linux Mint uses Canonical’s infrastructure without any sort of partnership with Canonical to do so
  3. Canonical tries to repeatedly have discussions with Linux Mint about Snaps and Linux Mint refuses every time.
  4. Canonical makes a decision that should only affect their own distro because thats the distro they make but since Linux Mint takes advantage of Canonical’s infrastructure, somehow Canonical has an obligation to Linux Mint’s users?

I agree with your ultimate point about hating on things you don’t like is a bad thing for the community to do but DLN Xtend didn’t throw hate a Linux Mint, they called out Linux Mint for throwing hate at Canonical.

Canonical is hated in the community for so many worthless reasons and to the point the people say “Ubuntu is the Devil” or “Ubuntu is the Windows of Linux”. Neither of those things is even remotely true but when someone who participates in the hatred of Canonical, ie Linux Mint, gets called out for it, then the people calling Mint out is giving hate to Mint?

I think Linux Mint deserves to be called out for the attacks they gave Canonical especially while they take advantage of Canonical’s infrastructure without contributing back to Canonical at all for doing so despite Linux Mint getting funding of over $20,000 per month and can totally afford to have their own infrastructure. Also especially because Linux Mint claimed a LOT of things that are at best a complete lack of understanding of what Snaps are or at worst, straight up lies. Linux Mint claimed that you can’t do so many things related to Snaps but the truth is, you can do all of them.

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Thanks for the timeline. I liked how it framed your argument well, and helped me, personally, better understand the issues at hand.

I feel like I can see where you are coming from.

It always confused me why we had no less than (3) universal package systems, and people were STILL fighting over which one they thought was better based upon various merits and feature-sets. I mean, (3) should be more than enough to get just about any job done, right?

And, forgive me for drawing another parallel to the Mint/Unity case, but in my situation, being a ‘newbie’ to anything that was NOT Windows or Mac, I can vividly remember seeing so many negative claims about Unity (mostly things like they partnered with Amazon to steal my data, particular arguments made that the OLD Ubuntu (Gnome2) was better than Unity. (Lighter, faster, and less of a memory hog, whereas Unity needed “a beefy machine!”) When I live-booted into Ubuntu 12.04 (it actually worked on my computer) i wasn’t too sure about something so different to my familiar Mac/Windows environments. I notice the universal-menu-bar along the top, and without exploring too much farther, I decided that the ‘hate’ must be well founded. Mint, however, was out-of-the-box ready and instantly pulled me in.

… I had no idea that this was ‘LINUX’ we were talking about. I had no clue that, for example, if I didn’t LIKE the global menu (especially for a dual monitor setup) I could very easily CHANGE it for menus in the title-bars. I never made it that far down the forums because I was discouraged by the hostile comments I had to wade through.
The customization of such a versatile operating system like Linux leaves so much choice, it baffles me that there are even any arguments like this at all. Sometimes I read comments on youtube or hear comments on podcasts and I feel like the parent saying, “Son, Just go get another toy. Your room is FILLED with options.” (If that makes sense. :stuck_out_tongue: )

You are quite correct that Mint is using an Ubuntu base (as well as a Debian base, like Ubuntu is also using.) I liked your point that it is not Canonical’s fault for taking advantage of their own technologies to further their distro. :slight_smile: I disagree with the position that Mint should be forced to follow suit with every decision Canonical feels is best for Canonical because they re-use so much Canonical-code.

Mint is not an Ubuntu Flavor (as much as I really wish it was), nor apparently CAN be, as the fundamental philosophy of the two companies/distros/whatever-they-are-supposed-to-be-called-anyway(awkward! :crazy_face:) are very different… And that’s ok. We need different.

To me, Mint seems to be more of a fork than a flavor of Ubuntu.

I’m pretty sure your comment about Canonical repeatedly attempting to ‘reach out’ to Mint team are probably true. I haven’t read as much, but it seems quite likely. Its a nice gesture, but I doubt that a conference would yield much in the way of mutual understanding. And that’s ok, too.

The comments made indicating that Mint is the ungrateful stepchild of Ubuntu, always taking and never giving back… They grieve my spirit. I missed where there was a limit on how much Open-Source you are allowed to use before you have to donate to Canonical? Where is this price sheet? Mint clearly rakes in over $20k every month (presumably because people like the project and fund it? I’m taking a wild guess here.) and should definitely part with a portion of that kitty to Canonical, right? How much are we suggesting they pay for the right to reuse and modify code and to have the right to support flatpak instead of snaps? :thinking:

Would it be the ‘right thing’ to support Canonical? Does Canonical need Mint to support it when it cannot even be a official Ubuntu Flavor?

Those who use Mint seem, to some degree, support it through various means. (Apparently) Mint doesn’t charge for its fork due to licensing… same as Canonical doesn’t charge to use Ubuntu, nor to modify their code.

The truth is, when questions arise about the Big (3) (Universal Package formats), they are most likely questions rooted in genuine concerns. Flatpak (Tell me why gedit is a 1.2gig file I should download again?!?), Snaps (I can’t see the code, how do I know its the same code as what’s on git___? Why is the deb pointing to a snap and then forcing the snap install when I clearly wanted the DEB. If I had wanted the snap, I would have installed the snap?), and App-Image (I’m SURE if you looked hard enough, you’d find a negative comment or two about App-Images. Somebody hates on them somewhere. :stuck_out_tongue: )

My point is this: If you are not using Mint, and you are not supporting it… how does it affect you? If you are not effected by Mint’s decisions, and we clearly understand that needless drama confuses and hurts new users as well as Linux’s image overall, why high-light these types of blunders?!

I greatly enjoyed your response, and your attention to detail. :smiley: (But then, as a designer, you have a solid talent in the field of detail. :stuck_out_tongue: It’s why I keep listening to ‘This Week In Linux’ :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:)

QUOTE: “You water the plants you want to grow.”

Let’s use the positive water to highlight the outstanding achievements and let the sunshine of appreciation warm the different ways each Linux Distro is growing and maturing.

I say we get a new T-Shirt idea:
“Relax! The defaults can always be changed. – Linux is about having options… (even about your options)!” :innocent:

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I can’t add anything to your post (which I agree with BTW) so instead I’ll just add a relevant xkcd comic.


:sunglasses: :+1:

That fight is more over trying to minimize how many formats there are because fewer overall would be better in theory and they all had very different approaches meaning they could never really be consolidated. Flatpaks are Desktop only intended and Snaps have Desktop and Server . . . which is great for example installing Nextcloud with a Snap is so awesome compared to the “normal” way!

I think the fight is pointless and will accomplish nothing but that’s the reason for the fight I think.

This parallel isn’t really a parallel. Unity was a community driven hatred based on false assumptions and propaganda spread around by anti-Canonical people. For example, did Canonical partner with Amazon to steal data? No. They didnt even partner with Amazon unless you count affiliate links as partnering so I guess every person in the world with Amazon Affiliate also has Partnered with Amazon then.

So yes, Unity was hated based on false pretenses and false claims about it being heavy when it 100% wasn’t. It literally started as a Netbook DE before converted into their main DE. Ubuntu 10.10 Netbook Edition = first release of Ubuntu with Unity. There are so many nonsense claims made by people against Canonical because they just hated Canonical for having intestinal fortitude to actually innovate rather than sit back and let the Linux Desktop stagnate like the community seemed to want.

That was random people in the community throwing hate with false claims at Canonical.

This situation is Linux Mint throwing hate with false claims at Canonical . . . and then DLN Xtend and myself, on my YouTube channel, calling out Linux Mint for doing so.

I think classifying DLNX as hating on Linux Mint is unfair to DLNX and ignoring what Linux Mint is doing because they are the instigators and the people making baseless claims against someone else. Honestly, I think DLNX was way more kind to Mint than I would have been because Linux Mint deserves to be called out on their hate mongering.

That shows that endless hate spewing had the exact affect on you that they wanted. They want you afraid of Ubuntu and Canonical so in that situation the hate mongering was effective to their agenda.

At what point, did you realize that Linux Mint is 100% dependent on Ubuntu to even function? Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu sure that doesnt make them dependent but relying on Ubuntu’s servers to do everything for them does make them dependent. Also Linux Mint’s job of “out of the box ready” is just the sprinkles on top of the actual hard work that is 80% done by Canonical through Ubuntu. Linux Mint is given credit for so many things they have nothing to do with and they even take credit for things they have nothing to do with. There were statements in their release notes about Linux Mint bragging they improved GPU acceleration and such but did they give Ubuntu any credit for actually being the people who did the work to make that happen? Of course not.

I know Linux Mint Debian Edition (LMDE) exists but guess who is a massive contributor to Debian has been for the entire existence of the company . . . that’s right Canonical. In fact, the guy who maintains APT the package manager who Mint is so afraid that Canonical will destroy in some nonsense evil plot ., . . guess which company that guy works for. Yep. Canonical employee maintains APT. Oh and he is also the developer of the beloved Synaptic GUI app.

People love things that Canonical makes unless they know Canonical makes it and then make way for the hate train.

I agree but in my case, I can’t speak for DLNX, I am not going to sit back anymore and let this spread of hate mongering be unchecked. I called out Linux Mint because they said things that were not true about Snaps and they made attacks against Canonical/Ubuntu because Canonical wanted to use the thing they designed to be used. Linux Mint deserves to be called out for these false claims and these attacks so I am totally fine with being the one to call them out.

I am tired of the constant hate that some very very tiny part of the community does that affects the decisions of so many people that I am done with letting them get away with it.

“Ubuntu base” implies something they aren’t doing. As for the Debian thing, yea I addressed that a bit earlier already so I’ll let that just be that.

Let’s take it out of the tech world and put it into something else for analogy as to why I am frustrated at this stuff Mint is doing and getting away with doing in the eyes of many to even act like they are some kind of hero.

Let’s turn it to cars.

Ubuntu is a car manufacturer. Debian is also a car manufacturer. Linux Mint is a after-market fabricator that pretends to make their own cars.

Ubuntu does get some parts like engines and doors and etc from Debian but they have a partnership to do so which is also why Ubuntu sends many of their parts and improvements back to Debian to put in their cars. It’s up to Debian to put those parts in or not but Ubuntu does share it with them.

Linux Mint comes in with no partnership with Ubuntu whatsoever (or even Debian for that matter) and takes parts from them without permission then breaks into their manufacturing facility to make the cars that Linux Mint drivers are completely unaware that is being made in Ubuntu’s facility. Linux Mint use Ubuntu’s parts and infrastructure all the while insisting that Ubuntu pays for those parts and infrastructure.

Then when Ubuntu decides to make a change on how one of the cars is built Linux Mint screams they are being effected by Ubuntu in a nefarious way. When in reality it’s because Linux Mint does what they do and refusing to do it the right way that its even remotely possible.

I say “Hey Linux Mint, stop breaking into their facilities to make your cars then!”

They aren’t and no one suggested they should be. They SHOULD be forced to make their own infrastructure which would 100% eliminate any impact Canonical makes with theirs.

Linux Mint is yelling at Canonical for trying to be sneaky against Linux Mint users . . . Canonical is doing nothing of the sort and Linux Mint is pretending they dont take advantage of Canonical to make their distro. If Mint just did the right thing and made their own infrastructure then whatever Canonical does in their infrastructure would make no difference to the users of Mint because it would be up to Mint’s infrastructure to do those things or not therefore Mint users wouldn’t have to pull packages directly from Ubuntu like they are doing right now.

What’s the difference of philosophy in your opinion?

btw, I am glad it’s not because I would the expect all the awful code decisions and corner cutting that Mint does would find its way into Ubuntu’s code like some sort of backdoor.

It’s neither. Fork means something very specific. Mint is not one.

The point I made with that was not that it would change anything. It’s the fact that Canonical does the right thing with asking people to be involved even detractors of their stuff. PopOS and elementaryOS both don’t have Snaps by default and both of them do the same “take advantage” of Ubuntu’s infrastructure that Mint does but they don’t find it necessary to scream about Snaps and attack Ubuntu.

Seems like a lot of snark here but alright I’ll play.

This assumes that they are taking source code and using it for their own thing. That’s not what they are doing. They are taking bandwidth and resources from Ubuntu’s infrastructure. I refer you back to the going into Ubuntu (car manufacturer) facilities and making their cars inside with their parts and resources.

Using Open Source code has zero obligation to give back and that would be fine for Mint to do IF that was what they were doing but that’s not what they do.

people like the project and fund it . . . in my generous estimation to Mint, 80% or more of the project is depending on the work that Canonical/Ubuntu does and the servers that Canonical provides to THEIR users . . . how much goes to Canonical? Zero.

Now that the stage is set

“reuse and modify code”, that’s not what they are doing. It’s not at all about the code.

But how much? well they should pay at the minimum the cost of however much bandwidth they make Canonical pay for serving packages to Mint’s users.

Its not a cut and dry thing because Mint takes money from Canonical by using their servers and bandwidth . . . so whatever that costs Canonical is what they should pay to them as a service fee.

If a project siphons from Canonical and also makes a lot of money (Mint tells everyone how much they make each month, I didn’t invent that number) then yes in taking from Canonical in the way that they do, Mint does have an obligation at least ethically to provide some level of gratitude.

Btw to be clear, Linux Mint is not the only distro that uses Canonical’s servers to send packages to users. Think about how many people use Ubuntu . . . now think about all the distros that are based on Ubuntu, how many of those Ubuntu-based distros do you think are actual forks of Ubuntu not using their infrastructure? Answer= none of them. They all use Canonical’s infrastructure.

Again, it’s not about the code. Also Open Source does not require things to be free. The licensing has nothing to do with whether or not someone can charge for something. There are thousands of Open-Source Commercial projects and products, in fact, this forum software is a commercial product that also happens to be open source.

There’s even a distro that is based on Ubuntu and uses Ubuntu’s infrastructure that does charge for a premium edition called ZorinOS. They are not doing anything against licensing and I have no complaint to what they are doing because they aren’t hate mongering against the people they take from.

The problem is that, no they are not.

This is a confusion on the part of the community and detractors. Flatpaks are not that big but the Runtimes required to run flatpaks are that big. So is Gedit Flatpak 1.2GB? Nope but to install Gedit as a Flatpak you have to install Gedit and the Runtime needed to make it work.

This is also not a factor used to hate the people who make Flatpaks.

See, this is an example of believing false claims. You CAN see the code in a Snap. You can modify them, uncompress them, review the code, edit the code, all of that that Mint said you “can’t” do is totally nonsense because you can do all of it.

Are their Snaps that you can’t see the code for? Yes . . . the proprietary software packages as a Snap is something you can’t see the code for. If the same companies released the files as DEBs, those DEBs would also be proprietary kind because DEBs can be just as much proprietary as Snaps can.

Nothing is “forced” because they tell you upfront about it. If you try to install the DEB via APT it tells you in the terminal that it will bring in the Snap. It doesn’t just install automatically. APT by default requires confirmation, how is it forcing a Snap install if someone doesn’t read the message presented before confirming?

Why is it pointing to a Snap? It’s their distribution, they can do whatever they want. They have no obligation to package Chromium at all much less specifically as a DEB.

Hate? No. Complaints about the format? Yes. There are technical issues for AppImages and I have expressed them on many occasions but never once have I seen “hate” for AppImages at least not towards the developer of them. I know people who don’t like AppImages but no one calls the dev “evil” or “the Devil” like they do with Canonical/Ubuntu.

I can only speak for myself but so how does it affect me? Well it affects me when I tell people in the past to use Linux Mint or you find me talking about Linux Mint in positive ways on Destination Linux related to Beginner Distros (few episodes ago) that I now have an opinion that contradicts the opinion I gave on that episode. I no longer recommend Linux Mint at all because they decided that their opinion is more important than user freedom so they blocked Snaps by default. Its one thing to not have them by default, it’s a whole other thing to block users from installing them unless they choose to climb the wall that Linux Mint put in their way.

Also I am the host of a Linux News show so talking about it is not only something I think needs to happen so they don’t get away with their false claims and attacks but also something I kind of have to do.

So whether I use Linux Mint or not, to say their decision doesnt affect me is not accurate because it does not only in the sense that I have to talk about news stories but also because ignoring it would allow people to find my statements suggesting Linux Mint whereas now, I no longer suggest Linux Mint . . . so I also have to counter that.

Because I am tired of it. I am tired of the needless hate thrown at Canonical and Ubuntu. They have been hated for over a decade now and for what? People made claims about things that aren’t even true.

Why should I stand by with indifference when Linux Mint makes more claims about Ubuntu that aren’t true?

I think 10+ years of hatred spewing at Canonical and me standing by with indifference is enough.

I hope you enjoyed this one too :sunglasses: :+1: and sometimes the attention to detail is my downfall because why I am I so frustrated by Linux Mint? Because I pay attention to all of the nuance for both ends and I have been doing that for the entire existence of both. I wish I could just ignore it and move on but alas, we play the hands we’re dealt. :smiley:

99% of my content is positive because I prefer to talk about things I like, and I don’t like to talk about things that frustrate me at all. However, 1% of the time I have to . . . and this happens to be one of those things.

lol I cant make a shirt for that because I don’t agree with it. Sorry. Default is King and that’s why defaults matter regardless if you can change them.

Sane defaults are absolutely underrated. I for one cannot understand why people want their mouse wheels inverted by default. “Natural” scrolling? There’s nothing more unnatural to me. It’s one of the first things I change from the “default”. Second is 24-hour time but I understand that’s a US regional thing. We like our AM/PM.


Wow! Thank you for the detailed response. I appreciated you taking the time to share your passion on the subject.

And I admire your analogy of the ‘car’. You, sir, are the Bob Ross of painting word pictures. :smiley:

I guess I misunderstand the terminology. I though a ‘fork’ is what they called it when you take existing code and put your own modification to it. With Mint taking upstream code (apparently from Canonical, thus the ‘snap’ decision on the single-package Chromium now affects them… from their viewpoint) and applying their ‘patches’ or holding back, favoring older versions of packages as it suits them, I guess I always thought that would fall within kingdom of ‘Fork-dome’. For example, most of the Mint apps have a ‘look’ about them, or many of the packages appear to be held back for stability reasons.

I liked your comment about the bandwidth usage and resources from Ubuntu’s infrastructure. Is that what the list of ‘mirrors’ are when I go to download Mint? Or is this referring to where Mint is pulling their packages? If it is where Mint gets its packages I’m confused. I thought Mint hosted their own PPA’s for their packages, thus the reason why they are so… er… vintage. :thinking:

And I don’t think you can ‘technically’ say Mint “makes” a lot of money, as they don’t charge for their product, nor for the support of their project. Mint publishes how much they receive in community donations. You can’t really ‘make’ that, but just accept whatever comes in.

I can’t exactly blame you for getting passionate about defending Canonical’s interest. But both sides seem to be taking this a bit too personal for what it is. There wasn’t a single decision made that could be reversed just as quickly in the future, right? And, this seems to be one single package, that if I understand correctly, COULD be kept in a Mint PPA separately, or even flatpaked. If I knew how to flatpak it, I so totally would. (But somehow I don’t think it would help.)

You asked about the philosophical difference: Ubuntu is, as I understand it, “by the people for the people.” (Maybe not is as much words, but that’s how it strikes me.) Mint, by what I can see it, places a higher priority on polish, cautious, and conservative.

I agree that 99% of your content is positive and upbeat. We’ll just have to put up with the 'Mint" & “Epic” parts when they surface. :stuck_out_tongue:

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it was a happy little accident :smiley:

Nope, that’s not what it is.

I am making a video on my YouTube channel to fully explain these types of things because there are MANY variations of it but I’ll address the fork thing and what Mint actually is so this wont be a full list but will cover the relevant pieces.

First of all, there are many terms but we are only going to talk about 2, Fork & Derivative.

A fork is when a project is created based on an existing project but does not rely on said project to facilitate anything to their users. There is some nuance to this in regards to a “Hard Fork and a Soft Fork” but I won’t go into that too deeply right now.

A derivative is a classification that is more of a broad term that states a project based on another project. This like a category and a fork is a subcategory of a derivative. It’s like LCD vs LED monitors, all LED monitors are also LCD monitors but with different lighting tech vs LCD monitors not using that lighting tech. So all LED monitors are LCD but not all LCD are LEDs. Thus all Forks are Derivatives but not all Derivatives are Forks.

I will further explain this in follow up responses.

Forks do this sure but there is a huge difference that Mint doesn’t do making it Not a Fork. Mint claimed that Canonical was “putting in backdoors” saying that this action on their own distro is somehow an attempt to force people in Mint to unknowingly install Snaps. This is nonsense because fork would never have that problem, NEVER.

A fork is what Ubuntu is to Debain. If you install Ubuntu or any flavour, then you are getting packages directly and exclusively from Ubuntu. You are at no point getting downloads or using bandwidth from Debian to get packages in Ubuntu. This is a fork. Ubuntu is a derivative that does not rely on Debian to facilitate anything with direct interaction with the user.

Of course Ubuntu does pull packages from Debian on a consistent basis but the difference is once the pull is complete, thats the only action involving Debian. So thats Debian to Ubuntu then Ubuntu to the user.

Linux Mint is in no way a fork at all. Linux Mint does not fork most packages and because of this the path for the user to get these packages is very different.

Ubuntu’s structure (real fork)

  1. Debian duplicated into Ubuntu’s servers/repos
  2. User pulls directly from Ubuntu’s servers/repos

Linux Mint’s approach (soft derivative)

  1. Debian duplicated into Ubuntu’s servers/repos
  2. Linux Mint adds a few changes on top for their preferences and such with their own separate server/repo but most of which has nothing to do with the majority of packages.
  3. Users of Mint pull from Mint’s “overlay repo” AND Ubuntu’s servers/repos

The difference here is Mint is effectively forcing Canonical to pay for the resources Mint’s users take when pulling packages to install because Mint doesn’t serve most of them.

Its not about Mint not liking Snaps. I think their position to not like Snaps is absolutely nonsense of a “I dont wanna” attitude rather than having any valid tech nology complaint. However, I don’t care . . . use them or not.

The issue is that Mint claimed Canonical was trying to sneak backdoors into Mint and trick Mint users with this decision. It would be 100% impossible to sneak anything into a forked repo because of the buffer the forked repo will create since the users would have no direct pull from the original repo.

Ubuntu did not sneak anything, they did this action in 2019 and they made a BIG blog post about it specifically. They told their users. They also have a warning on the APT install action telling you it will happen but that’s not enough for the self-righteous crusaders apparently.

If Linux Mint was a true for there would be no interaction between Mint users and Ubuntu repos making this claim that Mint made SOLELY because Mint refuses to do their own infrastructure. Ubuntu has no obligation to Mint users to inform them of changes, in fact, how would they even inform them? If telling people 9 months before Mint threw a fit like a child in walmart is not enough, what would be?

These are actions of a fork nature but that’s not what Mint does for most packages. Most packages in Mint are from Ubuntu directly, not patched, not held back, not anything, . . . directly from Ubuntu servers.

Mint’s apps do have a look, a very old look because they are forks of old applications. That’s not important. Anyway, even though they do have some of their own stuff doesnt mean it is a fork. You can have forked packages while the distro itself not be a fork. A fork requires ALL packages to be forks if only some of them then the distro is not fork.

No. Mirrors are subsidized duplicates for users to not use the bandwidth of the official source. Linux Mint is also sketch here because they dont even offer an official source. They only use the bandwidth of the Users via Torrents or the Mirrors. Go try to download Linux Mint 20 from linuxmint.com . . . you can’t. This is Linux Mint taking advantage of the kindness of the Mirrors. Is this unethical? No. It is taking advantage which is the mirrors are okay with that then that’s fine.

This refers to pulling packages, indeed. Linux Mint makes their own packages on top of Ubuntu but still heavily uses Ubuntu. I don’t think they use PPAs to do it BUT it is worth noting that if they do or any one does use PPAs, Canonical is paying for that. ALL PPAs are served by Launchpad, Launchpad is Ubuntu’s infrastructure thus all PPAs are served and paid for by Canonical.

So does Linux Mint use PPAs? I am not sure. If they do then Canonical pays for it. If they don’t well let’s address that too.

The sources.list file is a way to tell your distro where to get packages for updates and whatnot. Here is Ubuntu’s 20.04 sources.list:

deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal main restricted universe multiverse
deb-src http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal main restricted universe multiverse

deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal-updates main restricted universe multiverse
deb-src http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal-updates main restricted universe multiverse

deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal-security main restricted universe multiverse
deb-src http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal-security main restricted universe multiverse

deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal-backports main restricted universe multiverse
deb-src http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal-backports main restricted universe multiverse

deb http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu focal partner
deb-src http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu focal partner

Do you see Debian anywhere in that list? Nope. All Ubuntu or Canonical domains. This is a fork.

Let’s look at Linux Mint’s 20 sources.list:

deb http://packages.linuxmint.com ulyana main upstream import backport

deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu focal main restricted universe multiverse
deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu focal-updates main restricted universe multiverse
deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu focal-backports main restricted universe multiverse

deb http://security.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/ focal-security main restricted universe multiverse
deb http://archive.canonical.com/ubuntu/ focal partner

1 repo sitting on top of all Ubuntu repos. They have 1 extra layer that contains the changes they make and everything else is pulled directly from a Ubuntu using their bandwidth. Not a fork.

This is just being pedantic about the term “make”, replace the term with donated and it all still fits in. 80% of the work in Linux Mint is done by Ubuntu and also Debian. They should tell people to donate to both of those or take the money that they receive and donate back to those projects at 80% to them. At the very least they should pay Canonical for using Canonical’s servers.

This is just a random thought but MAYBE if Mint paid Canonical for the resources they siphon, maybe Canonical would give Mint their own stream of downloads. Imagine Linux Mint paid for this in a deal with Canonical and said “we want a non-snap stream from APT, so if you want to do that ok but in ours make those packages be empty debs that only gives info for the snaps thing but not do the snap thing”. The effort in doing that for Canonical is practically nothing so why wouldn’t they. It’s not like Canonical has an issue with people not using Snaps. They don’t care. PopOS & elementaryOS both don’t use snaps by default and guess who serves the majority of their packages? Canonical. (in the same way that Mint’s is structured btw, one repo on top of Ubuntu’s)

So take out the pedantic “make” issue and all of what I said is still valid. They still get in over $20,000/month and how much do they send back to Ubuntu? Zero. How much do they send back to Debian? Zero. (based on my research)

I don’t care about “Canonical’s interest”. I care about ethics. It is completely unethical to repeatedly and consistently take resources from someone without any compensation or even a thank you. Add to that, the fact that Mint yells at Canonical for changing something, that 100% makes sense to change btw, thus not allowing Linux Mint take from them exactly how they want to take from them.

If that wasn’t enough, its also very unethical to yell at Canonical about something with a self-righteous crusader approach like they are saving users from problems that don’t even exist.

In Linux Mint’s blog post they yelled about how Snaps are proprietary evil basically claiming that “you can’t edit, audit, patch, view or hold for updates Snaps”. This is completely unethical or dumb, Mint can pick whichever one they want.

These claims are 100% not true. You CAN do all of those things with Snaps. So they aren’t made a claim they know to be lie which is unethical or they don’t know if it is true or not and made the claim anyway thus a dumb claim. Either way, neither option is shining a good light on Linux Mint to me.

I respect what Canonical has done for the Linux ecosystem, that’s true. I was around in Linux before Canonical existed and I saw all the work they did compared to no work from other big Linux companies for Desktop Linux. I do have soft spot for Canonical out of respect for the millions of dollars they have sunk into the platform that I use and love. However, that has nothing to do with my opinion of what Mint did. I don’t care if Mint doesn’t want to use Snaps, I don’t even care if Mint ignorantly blocks snaps based on their misunderstanding of it. I care that Mint is spreading garbage nonsense about Snaps. Snaps aren’t perfect and everyone is welcome to complain about things that are true but to vilify Canonical for things that aren’t even true. That is unethical and that is why I am bothered by this.

Linux Mint is the only one who made a fuss about it. Canonical responded and after that they don’t care.

Hate mongering is a hard decision to reverse, that’s what Linux Mint did. Will they apologize for spreading false claims? I doubt it.

Linux Mint will not be packaging Chromium. They already said they won’t. The “solution” they came up with was “don’t trust Canonical, instead trust Google”. Chromium is made by Google and they suggest people get the DEBs from Google. This is silly and lazy. They don’t want to pay for the servers to send packages to users and if something changes they don’t like they wont do anything about it other than yell and complain. Could they address? sure. They already said they won’t.

I agree with your assessment about Ubuntu. Shuttleworth created Ubuntu because he wanted a good Desktop Linux distro and thus made one. So that is a fair description of the company and distro.

The Linux Mint description is something I would highly disagree with. The “polish” part? No. Linux Mint makes some things that are nice like Cinnamon for example (fork of GNOME) but they also cut a bunch corners with security, stability and all sorts of annoying things. Linux Mint is not “cautious” because of all the weird things they do on security and package priority. (this one is a long one to explain but will if you want). I don’t know how “conservative” applies unless you mean the 2 year upgrade path but the same thing can be said with Ubuntu’s LTS so I am not sure what you mean here.

lol oh yea, the Epic Games thing . . … yea I hate that company. :smiley:

but yea, I am mostly positive and I don’t like to promote negativity. This is why you’ve never heard me say “I think Linux Mint is completely overrated” on any shows or really anywhere because that’s a unnecessary negative thing to say. That is my opinion and I’ve had that opinion for years but I don’t like being negative. Linux Mint though has annoyed me enough to say it because of their unethical (or dumb) attacks so it is what it is. Linux Mint gets a ton of credit that I don’t think they deserve and because of that, they are overrated. I mean look at TimeShift. People give Linux Mint credit for making TimeShift but they didn’t make it.

This hate mongering needs to stop, I agree with you on that but the original problem with this and why I replied is because the people making this hate mongering is Mint, not DLN Xtend.


Well stated! Thanks for taking the time to comb through this patiently. I genuinely understood about 5% of the Mint/Snap issue, it would seem.

I kinda figured that it had less to do with Chromium and more to do with a philosophical difference. (And, yes, I think Mint’s ‘look and feel’ is pretty polished, overall. But then, I’m not a designer by trade. Just an average end-user who likes what I see. :slight_smile: )

I hereby retract my earlier feedback pertaining to the DLNXtend episode 22: and amend my comment to simply state:

“While your comments on Linux Mint were NOT unfounded… Less negative and more positive, please. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:” -jastombaugh

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I can tell you that I have no hate for Mint. I do, however have a dislike for some of their decisions. I don’t believe the blocking of Snaps is in the best interest for their users. My point in all of it is this, Mint has been a great distro in many ways. It is easy for new users to get along with it. I do not agree with some of their choices but ultimately, that is between Mint and their community. If this is indeed a good decision, then time will tell. It will also make itself evident in the contrary too.

If you like Mint and it serves your needs, by all means, please keep using it. For my use case, I cannot recommend it as a good choice moving forward if they choose to be hostile towards Snaps. That is all.


Yeah it happens a lot more frequently when recording lol, But thanks for mentioning. Always appreciate the feedback.

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well I stopped using Linux Mint and Ubuntu in 2018 so I am not following them much, I am more interested in my Work OS Fedora/CentOS and home PC (Manjaro based on Arch for now), I used Linux Mint for a long time 2012 to 2016 (moved to Mint due to the Unity DE, liked Mate/Cinnamon) but moved to PopOS in 2017 and 2018 gave up on ubuntu/debian all together for arch. the GNOME desktop in general was really natural when I moved to Linux because in 2007 I left winXP for MacOS and was using MacOS for few years before switching to Linux, for any ex mac user GNOME is the best option.

Gaming on Linux is my favorite topic, I am gaming on Linux even since I started using Linux fully back in 2010, then it was very difficult to install games on Linux only wine existed for windows games, but now Lutris, Play On Linux, probably the best solution is Steam Proton, add game to steam and use proton, have done it for many many windows games to make them run in Linux and never use windosw again.

What I am very exited about as a Linux gamer is the native games in the last few years, tomb raider, civilization all the small unity3d games, java games flathub has at the moment over 200+ games some of the really great like OpenRA, 0AD, warzone2100, megaglest, super tux, super tux kart, endless sky
and EAs Command and Conquers Red Alert Remaster going FOSS (Free and Open Source Software)
compared to 2010 and before in 2020 Linux gaming has grown and came along way in the best way.

Regards, Alex