Linux Mint team wants users to upgrade, may enforce some

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 1, 2021
Linux, Linux Mint

Last month, the Linux Mint team published a post on the organization's official blog about the importance of installing security updates on machines running the Linux distribution.

The essence of the post was that a sizeable number of Linux Mint devices was running outdated applications, packages or even an outdated version of the operating system itself.

A sizeable number of devices run on Linux Mint 17.x, according to the blog post, a version of Linux Mint that reached end of support in April 2019.

A new blog post, published yesterday, provides information on how the team plans to reduce the update reluctance of Linux Mint users.

linux mint updates manager

Next to showing reminders to users, Linux Mint's Update Manager may enforce some of the updates according to the blog post.

In some cases the Update Manager will be able to remind you to apply updates. In a few of them it might even insist.

Enforcing updates is an option according to the blog post. The team goes on to explain that the new functionality will be configurable.

We don’t want it to be dumb and get in your way though. It’s here to help. If you are handling things your way, it will detect smart patterns and usages. It will also be configurable and let you change the way it’s set up.

Upcoming versions will provide information on the implementation, how the "insisting" part may look like, and whether the installation of updates will be enforced.

The two blog posts highlight that update reluctance is not only a thing on Windows. There are several explanations when it comes to avoiding the installation of software updates or operating system updates:

  • Unclear how updates are installed or that updates are available.
  • New versions introduce changes that are unwanted.
  • Fear that updates may introduce errors or may crash the entire system, or even make it unbootable.

All of this boils down to a single question: how far should operating system developers go when it comes to updates?

There is a clear danger in not applying updates that introduce security fixes. Running old versions that have security updates could result in attacks being carried out successfully against systems.

Should the companies and organizations that develop operating systems enforce updates because of that or use notification systems to inform only but keep the update decision in the hands of the administrators?

Now You: what is your take on update enforcements?

Linux Mint team wants users to upgrade, may enforce some
Article Name
Linux Mint team wants users to upgrade, may enforce some
Linux Mint wants to improve system updates, especially those with security patches, to reduce the number of unpatched systems.
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  1. ULBoom said on April 11, 2021 at 12:22 am

    Late to the party but this is weird, it was just a blog post not forcing anything on anyone. Real meh item but conflicts with their ostensible reasons for removing snaps which were security and user monitoring concerns. Now Mint’s using adaptive monitoring? For what, creep factor? Updates can already be left wide open, security only or disabled.

    I keep the security updates on for my distros but do package updates manually. We have a home server with headless Ubuntu and a 2011 laptop with KDE Neon. Moved away from Mint long ago. Two reasons: herky jerky touchpad performance and lousy graphics card support. KDE Neon runs Plasma very well on the laptop; no other distro did well on it regardless of desktop.

    Honestly, any “full featured” distro can be quickly learned by a Windows user if it has a good desktop (NOT Gnome), is stable through updates and has access to a graphical package manager.

    I’d bet many newbies start with Ubuntu’s Gnome disastertop, then go to Mint or give up.

  2. RobO said on March 11, 2021 at 12:57 am

    I am over one year now with Linux OpenSuse and slow to use terminal and to figure stuff out.
    I am finding that upgrading the Linux Operating System is problematic.
    I have currently 15.01 and 15.0 installed and would love to upgrade 15.0 to 15.02 easily.
    I usually download ISO for USB and install but any which I go is tedious.
    Perhaps Linux could make upgrading easier with YAST with a go back / restore function included and I wouldn’t be stressing about loosing a functional OS.

  3. com said on March 6, 2021 at 1:07 pm

    Mint is like WIndows 10 has so many bugs and unstable so better move to Debian or Ubuntu

  4. fires3as0n said on March 3, 2021 at 8:32 am

    I will uninstall mint update manager / mint itself first time I get any notification.

  5. USA! said on March 2, 2021 at 11:32 pm

    I happen to know that every update violates my FREEDOM and therefore HATES AMERICA! NEVER UPDATE! OH SAAAAY CAAN YOU SEEEEEEEEEEEEE….

    1. Anonymous said on March 18, 2021 at 11:53 pm

      Shitty USA companies are the main pushers of forced updates.

  6. Gerard said on March 2, 2021 at 5:18 pm

    Where are today’s (2nd March) comments? I don’t see them at the time of writing.

    1. Peterc said on March 2, 2021 at 8:07 pm


      It looks to me like all submitted comments are vetted before being posted (sometimes with egregiously unacceptable portions edited out). Whoever does the vetting — Martin himself? — *does* have to eat and sleep and probably only reviews comments in batches, so there is sometimes a delay before comments get posted.

      1. NoNoNotEvaz said on March 7, 2021 at 6:14 am

        Comments should never be Edited, they either make it fully or are rejected in whole! It’s completely unethical to edit any comment just reject it all if any part is deemed unacceptable!

      2. Peterc said on March 9, 2021 at 5:27 pm


        We obviously can’t know for sure, but it looks to me like whoever does the vetting and redacting at Ghacks uses a pretty light touch and goes out of his way to leave anything/everything arguably substantive and relevant, deleting only extreme rudeness, personal attacks, and (maybe) stuff that is *wildly* off-topic. At least some of the time, I come across partially redacted comments that contain useful information, so I’m glad they weren’t deleted in their entirety. In short, Ghacks’ “censor” *appears* to be acting in good faith.

  7. Gerard said on March 2, 2021 at 1:55 pm

    The Linux Mint team will not force updates or upgrades (two different processes as someone already wrote) upon users without an option to ignore update/-grade reminders.
    I’ve seen numerous complaints about software safety and security from (usually ignorant) people who use outdated and unsupported versions. And someone who still runs Linux Mint 17 (an unsupported OS since April last year!) obviously needs frequent reminders, and very annoying ones as well. Besides, updating/upgrading Linux Mint is easy and quick, and so is installing it from scratch btw.

  8. PeteVM said on March 2, 2021 at 1:51 pm

    Why are some Linux distributions trying so hard to become Windows 10?? If I wanted a corporate nanny, I’d install Windows! Well, so much for Linux Mint. Time to switch to a different Linux distro out there that is not trying to emulate the characteristics of Microsoft.

  9. torsumy said on March 2, 2021 at 12:41 pm

    Mint=Windows 10? And how to update Mint EOL version without fresh install? 16 to 20? 17 to 20? In Ubuntu need to edit rep old-releases then even from 14.04 to 20.04.

  10. Anonymous said on March 2, 2021 at 12:04 pm

    Mint is for casual ‘dumb’ users. Use other Linux if you want more control

  11. Anonymous said on March 2, 2021 at 11:31 am

    Forced updates without the user having the final word is always wrong and is plain malicious behavior. This happening in linux would be even worse and totally against the free software philosophy of user freedom from the developers’ whims that this OS was militantly created for. To those who might believe that this is for the greater good because this is also what Microsoft or Google said, understand that this often comes together with adding data collection without consent, ads, and restricting other user freedoms to benefit mainly the developer. This is never an altruistic decision.

  12. Boss said on March 2, 2021 at 10:31 am

    In windows 10, i use firewall to stop update.

  13. Dirk said on March 2, 2021 at 9:37 am

    If at any point in the future, I am forced to do updates by Linux Mint, or even irritated into doing updates, I will find another OS to use.

    That simple!

    As the OS provider, you do not understand that I am a Software Engineer, and that my machines run strictly controlled versions of everything. If the OS starts screwing with how I do my work and what I plan to have on my development machine: Goodbye OS, you just lost a supporter.

    So yes, it’s within your power and privilege to start doing this. Just know that you will lose users because of it.

  14. anonymous said on March 2, 2021 at 1:21 am

    I’ve used Mint for 8 years now. Some actual info:

    In the Mint updater, you can mark any particular package to ignore its available updates. Problem solved.

    Mint has an auto-update setting, but it’s not on by default; you can turn it on if you want.

    The Timeshift application can schedule system image backups in case something gets broken. Just choose a restore point.

  15. Anonymous said on March 1, 2021 at 11:28 pm

    I only like Linux Mint because of Cinnamon. Does Cinnamon run on any other distros?

    1. Peterc said on March 2, 2021 at 7:50 pm


      According to Wikipedia at :

      • Linux Mint
      • Ubuntu Cinnamon Remix (unofficial)
      • Fedora (as a spin)
      • openSUSE [both Tumbleweed and Leap]
      • Arch Linux
      • Gentoo Linux
      • Funtoo Linux [recently merged with Sabayon]
      • Mageia
      • OpenMandriva
      • Debian
      • Pardus
      • Manjaro Linux
      • EndeavourOS
      • Artix
      • Sabayon 8 (as an additional X window manager) [recently merged with Funtoo]
      • Void Linux
      • FreeBSD [not a Linux distro per se]

      NB: If you like Cinnamon, you might also like KDE Plasma, especially if you enjoy being able to tweak and customize.

      1. Alphatester said on March 3, 2021 at 9:24 pm

        Thanks for the list. I switched to EndeavourOS. So far clean and everything works out of the box.

  16. sdc said on March 1, 2021 at 10:32 pm

    isn’t mint on auto-update by default anyway (within each branch that is). doesn’t even require a reboot most of the time.

    they are talking about people “stuck” on old versions, yet upgrading from 19->20 is command line only. that really helps their case, doesn’t it.

  17. Kenny said on March 1, 2021 at 10:00 pm

    Which is why the more I think about it, people are best off with Arch.

  18. LetTheUserChoose said on March 1, 2021 at 8:38 pm

    This should be left as choices for the user:

    A) I’m a total noob. Update everything for me!
    B) I’m so-so. Just keep me secure.
    C) I feel responsible and will take care of updating.

  19. Anon7 said on March 1, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    Mint is a nice OS, it is one of the best. Probably the best for newbies switching over from windows.

    I believe that the mint team are just a bit concerned about old folks and the non-tech savvy running EOL/outdated versions of the distro that are not supported by them anymore.

    They are trying to find a way to remind those folks through the update manager that their system is out of date and could be vulnerable.

    That is ok per se, as long as the user can make the update manager configurable to not send reminders asking or insisting for them to update.

    If the mint team make it so that the update manager can not be configured to turn off automatic updates or reminders, then they would be taking the distro into dangerous territory. They will lose a lot of users no doubt.

    The metric system they are talking about should also be configurable to be switched off, if users do not like metrics collecting stuff.

    A more configurable OS is always a better one, and people should keep a closer eye on the mint team as to where they are going with this.

    They have been adding a lot of software to their OS lately, they would want to take a step back and not bloat it too much or start to nanny their users.

  20. Bruce Mangee said on March 1, 2021 at 6:55 pm

    Hmm, if they have a auto update ‘feature’, do they have a working auto rollback feature as well, if something goes wrong? I like some grandma PC features, but the user have to decide to use them.

    >> […} Linux Mint’s Update Manager may enforce some of the updates
    Wow … simply wow. Really?
    Force updates, without consent?
    In the name of security?

    What could possibly go wrong? *facepalm*

    1. RottenScoundrel said on March 2, 2021 at 5:20 pm

      Currently, auto-update is Update Manager already added to the Startup Applications list. You can disable or even remove it and that will make it a manual system. — For now. ;)

      But, as has been mentioned bloat and bugs are proliferating since 19.xx. I installed Mint 20.1 on an SBC and of the available 16GB NVMe, I had 6GB free. I then installed the full Ubuntu in it’s place and had 13GB free. Nuff-said.

  21. Yamen said on March 1, 2021 at 6:43 pm

    Linux Mint is still the best user friendly distro in my own opinion, and it’s also one of the most stable regarding updates, I really appreciate the testing they do as I have not faced any major issue since I started using it many years ago.
    Having said that, I hope they don’t go the nanny state path as someone else said in the comments, I don’t mind some nagging but applying updates on a user’s system without confirmation or concent is unacceptable for any Linux distro user. We choose Linux because we like to have the choice on what runs on our computers.
    The problem with enforced updates is that it won’t be confined to users running Mint 17 or any old distro, it will be applying updates on my system which runs version 20.1.
    I do a good job keeping my system and apps up to date, but I like to wait a little before installing to be sure, so I certainly don’t need a nanny.
    I hope someone from Mint reads this and take what I said seriously enough to consider how to apply their new “feature”.

  22. RottenScoundrel said on March 1, 2021 at 6:42 pm

    Been a Mint convert since about 14.0, but have not been happy since 19 and now this? The final straw for me, they have lost their direction — again.

    Time to start evaluatiing other distros. Gonna stay with a Debian base, maybe MX, maybe not.

    1. Peterc said on March 2, 2021 at 8:13 pm


      Can you explain *why* you became unhappy starting with 19? I’m genuinely curious, not trolling for one side or the other.

  23. computer said no said on March 1, 2021 at 6:39 pm

    I use puppy linux and have done for many years..Updating is never ever forced and it is entirely at the user discretion if an update is performed.
    Puppy is what you would term a frozen os but it works incredibly well and only uses 80mb of ram.

  24. disappointed said on March 1, 2021 at 4:58 pm

    Seeing how the last usable and fully stable version of Linux Mint was 19.2 and before that 18.3, I don’t foresee myself using Mint for much longer. For now, I’\m staying on 19.2 but if they enforce upgrades in the future I’ll have to look for alternatives.

  25. anonymous said on March 1, 2021 at 4:12 pm

    @Martin Brinkmann
    “Linux Mint team wants users to upgrade…”
    You mean “update,” not “upgrade.”
    Upgrade means a Mint distro upgrade on Linux Mint.

    @ditch_Linux_mint: What the hell are you talking about? Mint is better with every iteration. Provide some examples of what you mean.

    1. Peterc said on March 2, 2021 at 7:17 pm


      “@ditch_Linux_mint: What the hell are you talking about? Mint is better with every iteration. Provide some examples of what you mean.”

      ditch_Linux-mint’s statement *was* hyperbolic, verging on trolling. (Seriously: proposing BSD as an alternative to Linux Mint is kind of like proposing a unicycle as an alternative to a tricycle.)

      I used Mint Cinnamon from 17.3 through 20[.0]. (I’m holding off on running Linux on my new laptop for the time being, and my ~ten-year-old laptops are so slow I can’t stand using them with *any* OS anymore.) I personally spotted only a few areas where Mint had arguably gone downhill in that time, and not all Mint users were necessarily affected:

      • First, Mint stopped offering a KDE variant after 18.3, which was a pretty big deal for users who strongly prefer KDE. (I personally prefer recent KDE Plasma to Cinnamon on balance, though it’s not an absolute deal-breaker.)

      • Second, as a consequence of supporting better fractional display scaling, Cinnamon’s customizability was significantly restricted. This was a pretty big deal for me, as my eyesight requires upscaling and I ended up with *tiny* window-control buttons (Minimize, Maximize/Restore, Close) that were very difficult to target and that I could no longer replace with big ones. (I don’t know whether this issue has been addressed in Cinnamon’s most recent releases. I briefly ran a live instance of Mint Cinnamon 20.1 Edge on my laptop. Everything I tried seemed to work, but I neglected to pay attention to this particular problem.)

      • Finally, Samba’s reliability and performance took a nose dive starting with Mint 19. This problem was apparently inherited from Mint’s upstream Ubuntu base, but it was a *big deal* for users who need to network with Windows computers. I don’t know whether Samba is stellar in *any* Linux distro with *any* version of Windows, but it was definitely *terrible* in Mint 19.x with Windows 7.

      Otherwise, as a relative Linux noob, I trialed a *lot* of different distros and Mint was *consistently* the easiest and most hassle-free. It’s not hard to find lukewarm Mint reviews from experienced Linux users who have moved on to a new favorite distro, but Mint is probably still hard to beat for newcomers, first because major problems and annoyances rarely crop up, and second because if and when they do, you have a *huge* base of Mint and Ubuntu articles and users able to provide support. It can make the difference between finding a solution in minutes or hours versus days, weeks, or … never. The network effect may be unfair to new distros that arguably do things better, but it’s a serious consideration for Linux noobs.

      As for the subject at hand, given that Linux Mint caters heavily to ordinary, non-geek computer users, I don’t have a problem with notifications of major security vulnerabilities/updates that require carefully considered action to defeat. On the other hand, forced updates are probably a no-no. You have to allow for special use cases where experienced, knowledgeable users can weigh the pros and cons for themselves.

  26. justaned said on March 1, 2021 at 3:40 pm

    I run Mint 20.1 and 19.3. I have read both posts. Clem made it pretty clear (at least to my mind) that first, they will NOT force updates; and secondly that no final decisions have as yet been made on how this will be implemented.
    One of the problems Mint faces is they tend to be a distro that has a lot of newbies. Many of these don’t know how to upgrade to a more current distro; whether it be a clean install or an in place upgrade. I got that impression just from blog post comments when the upgrade to 20.0 came out.
    Feel free to run whatever distro you like, but at least try and understand where Clem and his team are coming from. As for the comment that Mint currently forces you to update, I’ve never seen it happen.
    The screenshot shown is one I’ve only ever seen upon a fresh install, prior to configuring Update Manager.

  27. Sol Shine said on March 1, 2021 at 1:40 pm

    Forcing updates is a bad idea. I want as much control as possible over my computers.

    New updates do come with features some people do not want (systemd, Gnome3, etc) for computers they want to be stable and are restricted by Firewall rules to only access a very small set of trusted websites. Such computers may only be allowed to acess the update servers, and not used for any general webbrowsing.
    Some new kernels or user software can drop support for some hardware you use.

    Linux is about having more security and privacy by having more control.
    If your Linux distro maintainers does not understand this, than move to another distro.

    Try MX Linux, they make amazing tools.
    The MX Snapshot tool lets you make a iso file of a snapshot of your MX Linux installation with all your settings and installed programs. Making the iso takles 4 minutes on my system. You can then burn it on a usb stick and use it on other computers. It is like a backup of your MX Linux system that you can directly boot up and use on other computers.
    Make a new iso and burn it to the usb stick every week or evreytime time you get mayor updates and you will always have a near up to date personalized Linux distro on a usb stick to use on almost any computer. I tested it and it worked fine.

    MX Linux is based on debian stable and the AHS (Advanced Hardware Support) has a more recent kernel than debian stable.

  28. Heedermann said on March 1, 2021 at 1:19 pm

    You missed to mention the following line in your article:
    “We have key principles at Linux Mint. One of them is that this is your computer, not ours.”

    Mint disabled Snap by default, but it gives instructions on how to enable it, if you want to.

    Mint is probably going to notify users more often about updates and maybe add automatic updates to critical/security updates by default. But you probably will have an easy option to change that default settings, if you don’t want to be bothered by notifications and automatic updates.

    But I guess saying that Mint is enforcing updates on users against their will makes a better clickbait.

    1. Tommy said on March 2, 2021 at 2:09 am

      Principles are only so while it’s convenient.

      Linux Mint devs now want to spy on users and force updates. Time to use something else.

      1. justaned said on March 2, 2021 at 5:16 pm

        No, the devs do not. The Update Manager will not have ant telemetry. Nor will the OS. Perhaps you should read the 2 blogs mentioned before you make such accusations. There were a multiplicity of comments made by users in the reply to the latest blog post. Clem (lead dev) made it quite clear no data AT ALL will be sent anywhere. It’s all about making the update manager more aware in regards to what has been looked at by the user. He replied to one comment “If you don’t trust us, don’t use the OS”.
        Maybe you’re right, and Clem is lying. The problem there is Mint, as a distro, has nothing to gain and everything to lose. Read the blogs before you post nonsense like this.
        By the way, Mr. Brinkmann; in answer to your question about forced updates I strenuously object to forced updates, or forced upgrades. It’s why I will continue to use Mint. :-)

  29. thebrowser said on March 1, 2021 at 12:18 pm

    You have to consider that Linux Mint is made for beginners and usually that means that updates are just an annoying popup getting in the way. They also have the data to back their claims about it. Is not like they are trying to create a nanny state for everyone a la Windows 10.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not entirely in favor of updating people’s system remotely and automatically. This can and will lead to frustration as we’ve seen from Windows in the past. I can relate: that is the main reason I moved away from Windows on all my machines. However this is important and well overdue. Users don’t have to upgrade their hardware because “is not compatible with the latest version” or any funky stuff like that. It’s a simple update, it’s free, fast, easy and you can even revert back should something go wrong or you don’t like it.

    So considering all this, at the very least a system notification makes absolute perfect sense.

  30. Vlad_The_Impala said on March 1, 2021 at 12:11 pm

    I think client level software should be updated, but I also think the user should have a way to disable this at installation easily. I think the kernel and system level components should be left in the hands of users unless updating a client piece of software depends upon that system compatibility then and only then updating a system component automatically would be acceptable. Still this should be toggle on/off at installation.

  31. ditch_Linux-mint said on March 1, 2021 at 9:54 am

    This Linux distro went a long way down since 19 ver. And continue its downtrend. Do yourself a good favour and ditch Linux Mint. Plenty other nice to its users Linux distros, MX Linux being a very good one. Or go full BSD, Free or Open.

    1. Peterc said on March 1, 2021 at 10:09 pm


      BSD (any variant) strikes me as being too difficult to install, configure, and administer for most Linux Mint users.

    2. Anonymous said on March 1, 2021 at 8:39 pm

      Another Iron Heart?

    3. MusicLover said on March 1, 2021 at 7:17 pm

      BSD’s Jails don’t match what Linux has with Kubernetes and Docker, so I won’t be using BSD as a primary system. As much as I appreciate my BSD-based TrueNAS it is less functional than my Linux NAS due to the power of Docker and Portianer. For desktop use it’s hard to deviate from an Ubuntu-based platform for me.

  32. Ivan said on March 1, 2021 at 9:45 am

    I’ll remember not to use Linux Mint in the future.
    Updating is a user’s responsibility.

  33. tratatam said on March 1, 2021 at 9:12 am

    Forcing updates it is what I hate about Linux Mint and like about Ubuntu. I noticed that switching off updates in Linux Mint a little bit harder then in Ubuntu. I thought it is just that a kink and in future it will be fixed. But now I plan to jump to KDE Neon (because for my CPU and GPU I have some issues with Kubuntu).

    Maximum what Linux Mint should let to themself is notify users about severe security problems with scary warnings.

    1. RottenScoundrel said on March 10, 2021 at 4:36 pm

      So, how do you feel about Ubuntu forcing you to use Snap and no easy way to disable it?

      Be careful what you wish for as Snap is woefully slow and cumbersome and Mint removed it. :)

      1. Anonymous said on March 12, 2021 at 4:39 pm

        X2, Snap isn’t the best btw. Arch Linux for the glory

    2. Anonymous said on March 2, 2021 at 2:07 am

      Forcing update is a dealbreaker and antithesis of what is supposed to be FOSS.

  34. Cor said on March 1, 2021 at 9:06 am
  35. Corky said on March 1, 2021 at 8:51 am

    Updates should always be left for the end user to decide IMO, no forcing them, no reminders, nothing, if the end user doesn’t install them and they get exploited it’s mea culpa.

    Besides aren’t the majority of ‘hacks’ simply down to social engineering?

    1. Friar Tux said on March 18, 2021 at 6:14 pm

      Just a note, Clem from the Mint team, has issued a statement, that they will not ever do forced updated. Just check out the Linux Mint site.

    2. Jody Thornton said on March 1, 2021 at 3:26 pm


      See I’m of two minds of this. On one hand I fully agree with you. Hey I’m running Windows 8, using Server 2012 updates, and my OS officially went out of support in January 2016. So I get wanting to run your OS, your way.

      But then let me put on the “vendor hat” and say this. It’s not MY operating system; it’s the company’s. Now should not the company wish for you to use their product the way THEY designed it? If they wish for the OS to NOT be customized in a certain way, or have mixed and matched updates, or look a certain way, should they not be able to enforce that?

      The problem lies in that (and I’m guilty of this too …) we look at our copy of Linux, Windows, OS/2 or BSD as OUR software which means we should do with it what WE want. But that’s completely and legally incorrect. It’s the company’s property, and we use the product under license. So by that mindset, we should be forced to use the product their way.

      Even though I hate information gathering, telemetry gathering does provide information on how users consume the product, and since software is really now a conduit for advertising, or at least will be, this information is needed as a path for a company’s long-term profitability.

      Otherwise, how do they make money? And don’t say you don’t care, because then where will you obtain software in the future?

      1. ULBoom said on April 10, 2021 at 11:40 pm

        Uh, No, that’s not correct. The license doesn’t say you agree to update the OS.

      2. Al C said on March 3, 2021 at 2:31 am

        Open source means you have a right to do with it what you want it doesn’t belong to a company I take all the updates because unlike windows Linux shows what the updates are and you could research them at your will free open source software that’s what it’s about

      3. thebrowser said on March 3, 2021 at 11:18 am

        Open source simply means that the source code that composes a program is publicly available for inspection. The license under which the program is distributed will condition what you can do with it afterwards.


      4. ULBoom said on April 10, 2021 at 11:50 pm

        Ding! Ding! Ding! You win!

        That’s all it means. Has zero to do with license terms.

        Chromium is open source but the parts most people who object, object to, cannot be removed or disabled. The fixed portions increase as time goes on. It’s an ad server owned by Google with licenses attached.

        Can’t be turned into whatever you want or there would certainly be private versions of it and there aren’t; only external proxy sinks, ala Brave.

      5. Jody Thornton said on March 3, 2021 at 2:01 pm


        Bingo! Thank you for bringing some light to the topic. It seems whenever you try to envision something from an opposite point of view, you’re the enemy, Mr Gates or whatever.

        I like controlling my own software installation too. But I realize it’s not really my property to do with as I wish. And that’s all I was saying.

      6. thebrowser said on March 5, 2021 at 12:43 pm

        I think it’s mostly because of the abuse from big tech companies on anything that can be used to track it’s users even if the technology and intent itself is legitimate. Telemetry is not inherently bad and in many projects such as Linux Mint you can see clearly what is being shared with the developers. But once a few (albeit overwhelmingly powerful) actors misuse it, everyone overreacts to this type of news just like abused animals see anyone as a threat.

        The irony is that most people who care to read this type of news know how to update their systems (a very basic task, really) and are not affected by this (for example, I don’t even use Linux Mint myself). All those who say “use X or Y distribution” don’t need to be reminded to keep their OS up to date. I get that you may not like the latest version of whatever software because it breaks your workflow, or the new version contains spyware like it did with Ccleaner or some browser extensions that get bought up, etc. But what reason could anyone possibly have to intentionally use an out of date version of Linux Mint?

        And again I’m not really in favor of starting updating people’s systems remotely but a notification for systems that are well overdue is no reason to start comparing Linux Mint with Microsoft. This type of overreaction to everything is getting ridiculous).

      7. Anon7 said on March 4, 2021 at 5:20 pm

        FOSS) is software that can be classified as both free software and open-source software.

        Anyone is freely licensed to use, copy, study, and change the software in any way, and the source code is openly shared so that people are encouraged to voluntarily improve the design of the software. That is the definition that the GNU project adheres too

        Many linux distros adhere to it too, some other software projects too.

        Proprietary software = the software is under restrictive copyright licensing and the source code is usually hidden from the user

        Essentially in propietary software, everything is done differently, the software is shut down and closed.

        Things do not have to be enforced on you in Linux, with windoze the updates are enforced and would be harder to turn off.

        I believe windoze users sometimes have a form of stockholm syndrome, a psychological response wherein a captive begins to identify closely with his or her captors, as well as with their agenda and demands.

        Free yourself from windoze.

      8. Anon7 said on March 2, 2021 at 12:52 am

        > “But then let me put on the “vendor hat” and say this. It’s not MY operating system; it’s the company’s. Now should not the company wish for you to use their product the way THEY designed it? If they wish for the OS to NOT be customized in a certain way, or have mixed and matched updates, or look a certain way, should they not be able to enforce that? ”

        An OS that does not reasonably respect user privacy and that can not be controlled and tamed is really an out of control OS. Why have disorder when you can have order.

        The philosophy of Linux/FOSS operating systems should be freedom, the freedom to configure the OS to how you like it, to easily remove unwanted software, and choose when to apply updates or upgrades when you want to, not when anyone else wants to.

        Many people expect that from Linux distros and many distros deliver on it. The more distros that stick to that FOSS philosophy the better, mint included.

        > “Even though I hate information gathering, telemetry gathering does provide information on how users consume the product, and since software is really now a conduit for advertising, or at least will be, this information is needed as a path for a company’s long-term profitability.
        Otherwise, how do they make money? And don’t say you don’t care, because then where will you obtain software in the future?

        By god, you sound like a bill gates representative.

        Not all software is built around advertising/telemetry nor should it be, especially FOSS.

        The advertising/telemetry model that gets incorporated into something like propietary windows is a privacy invading nightmare and just wreaks of greed.

        There are other ways for a company to make money without gathering up huge amounts of peoples data ( think donations etc)

        There are also many who create great software without requiring any money. Not everything has to be about money all the time.

        Money can be sometimes be an enemy to ingenuity

      9. Jody Thornton said on March 2, 2021 at 2:21 pm

        @anon7 said:
        By god, you sound like a bill gates representative.

        See right there, that’s the sort of angry/ sarcastic nonsense that stops us from having friendly discourse on the Internet.

        And by the way, there are paid distributions of Linux too. And wouldn’t even FOSS software be subject to changing terms, and would not these organizations also have stakeholders to varying degrees?

        No disagreement on money being an impedance to creativity and true progress, but greed is just too big a lion to fight.

      10. Anon7 said on March 2, 2021 at 7:36 pm


        >”And by the way, there are paid distributions of Linux too. And wouldn’t even FOSS software be subject to changing terms, and would not these organizations also have stakeholders to varying degrees?

        >”No disagreement on money being an impedance to creativity and true progress, but greed is just too big a lion to fight.

        Greed won’t be such a lion to fight if people actually choose and use software that respects their freedom and privacy.

        If more people demanded at least more open source software and hardware, greedy corporations will get the message that we do not want their privacy invading propietary garbage in our lives.

        This is important, take for example a computer with propietary windows being used in a government or medical administration scenario, think of the power that microsoft have by having everyones details on their closed source systems. It is absolutely horrifying.

        There should be laws against propietary software being used like that. I think there are some governments that have ditched windows at some point because of their greed and closed source software.

      11. Andrew Schweitzer said on March 1, 2021 at 11:28 pm

        Someone’s never heard of Free Software. I can do whatever I want with a Linux distro I have installed.

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