Linux News Today: Ubuntu 16.04 LTS with Unity 7 to Support Snappy Packages
Canonical has invested a lot of time and resources in the new Snappy packages, so it’s only natural that the developers want to make sure that people will be able to use it in the regular deb-based Ubuntu system.
The upcoming Ubuntu 16.04 LTS will continue to use Unity 7 as the default desktop environment, and that’s been known for quite a while. Canonical also aims to offer the Unity 8 desktop as an alternative until it becomes stable enough to take the place of the old one.
Canonical wants to adopt the Snappy packages for the regular Ubuntu distro, not just the phone. They used to be called click packages, but that terminology is no longer used. They are now called Snappy Personal, Snappy, or just snaps. Their name is less important than the fact that they bring a new type of package management.
These new packages have some improvements over the older debs, but it will take a while until they get some traction. It will help if Snappy package will also be available for the vast majority of Ubuntu users, who are not moving away from Unity 7 anytime soon.
Ubuntu 16.04 LTS will be able to run Snappy packages
Will Cooke, the Ubuntu Desktop lead, announced during a Unity 7 discussion at the Ubuntu Online Summit that they are working to bring Snappy packages to the regular Ubuntu flavor, with Unity 7.
This will take quite a little bit of work since it’s not about solving some simple dependencies. For example, it’s still not clear whether the Snappy packages will be confined or not. App confinement is a big feature for this new type of package, and it’s used by default in Unity 8.
To be clear, Will is not talking about running phone apps on the Ubuntu desktop, which will probably work as well. He wants to have apps like LibreOffice or Firefox packaged as snapps, which is actually a big step forward.
A lot of interesting changes are coming to Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus). For example, we just found out that the Ubuntu Software Center is being dropped and replaced with GNOME Software.
You can check the entire video below or jump to the 4:30 mark.