Flatpak plugin for snap-store snap

So I’m guessing we all love Snaps here on the Snapcraft Forum, but it’s not the only next-gen packaging format in town. I think it’s reasonable to expect that a lot of people on Ubuntu are also making use of Flatpaks to install and manage apps on their system.

Previously, Flatpak users on Ubuntu could install gnome-software-plugin-flatpak and this would provide Flatpak browsing within the store, and (most importantly) automatic updates for installed Flatpak apps.

But since Ubuntu 20.04, the Software app has been shipped in the form of the snap-store Snap, and does not support the GNOME Software plugin for Flatpaks. Users who install the Flatpak plugin above to get automatic updates will end up pulling in the regular gnome-software package as a dependency and are then left with two Software stores with similar but not identical functionality.

Is there any way we could investigate providing the Flatpak plugin within the snap-store Snap, so that users who use Flatpaks as well as Snaps still benefit from automatic updates, and from being able to browse them in the Software store?

I appreciate Canonical is invested in Snaps and there’s probably not a huge appetite for an effort to promote the “other tool”, but it’d make for a nicer (and more secure, thinking about the auto-updates) user experience for users who want to make use of both.

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they can still do that ?

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Related https://discourse.ubuntu.com/t/closed-is-the-inability-to-install-flatpaks-from-ubuntu-gnome-software-only-a-temporary-limitation/15664/18?u=ijohnson


Thanks for the additional context! That makes sense.

Yes this is a cosmetic issue for sure, as the end goal of Store-provided auto updates can still be achieved (with the caveat that users end up either two Store applications installed or needing to remove the snap-store Snap).

I was thinking less about my own usage really and more about some systems I’ve set up for less technical users recently, with applications provided by both Snap and Flatpak packages.

The discussion and conclusions on the Ubuntu Discourse make sense though.

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