Why are we constantly obsessed with moving on from the central package repository model?


Somewhere around this time of the year is my 11 year anniversary of using Linux, starting with Ubuntu 11.04. If there's anything that makes Linux be Linux for me, and why I'd rather use it instead of proprietary alternatives, is the centralized package repositories.

Compare with Windows, where I have to follow a burdensome maintenance routine – update Edge, update Firefox, update Office365, update Windows, update Windows Store apps, update printer drivers, update PortableApps launcher, update and run a Malwarebytes scan, update a bunch of other standalone programs, update the graphics driver.

On Linux, specifically my distro – sudo zypper dup

It's efficient, low maintenance and also trustworthy because there's a chain of trust from upstream developer to the package and distro maintainers. Is the fact that there are tons of distros to target really an excuse? Many are derivatives of one another. For me the repository model will always be the superior solution but it seems many (specifically the corporate-backed distros) want to leave it behind. Plus, in the odd case something is missing from the repositories, I find appimages to do the job just fine. They are easily migrated to a new installation, preserving their data, and honestly, I have yet to install any flatpak due to the large runtimes.

do we really need a paradigm shift of distros based around containers, snaps and flatpaks just to run discord and steam? What are we sacrificing here for the sake of convenience?

submitted by /u/smbreeze
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