More flatpak grumbling... so even after I went through the process of installing some utterly massive base packages to get just one or two packages to run, there happen to be updates to those base packages (as expected!). This means I'm looking at downloading up to 2.9 GB just to get system updates. There _has_ to be a better way to do this.

Again - I want things like Flatpak and Snap to succeed! But I have to wonder if developers realize that a broad majority of us consumers may sometimes (or semi-permanently) be on slow (< 10 Mbps) internet connections.

I can deal with running updates overnight every once in a while if there are a massive amount of updates, but the fact that they're now duplicated (or triplicated) by flatpak / snap is just frustrating.


@funnylookinhat I was initially going to blame poorly maintained, bloated containers (a common issue in Docker). However, it looks like they aren't actually particularly bloated, so this really is just an inherent problem with flathub.

That said, there are well-known solutions using pre-existing code to this problem in general.

For instance, if you have container:1.0.0 and want to upgrade to container:1.0.1, then you could make a local copy of 1.0.0 and rsync 1.0.1 onto it.

@urusan Yeah it's basically how flatpak / flathub work.

I think you're onto something, but I expect that to be part of the tooling (not some hack I have to do on my own).

I'm just shooting from the hip here, but we HAVE things that do binary deltas and catchup: zsync is a thing. Are we just getting lazy with all of this containerization nowadays? Why not put a bit of thought into how much effort it is for clients to update containers / layers?

@funnylookinhat Yeah, it is just lazy not to have this built in. It's probably just because the developers all have good Interest connections, so this didn't come up for them.

Although container layers help, it is much less powerful and other development organization concerns usually dominate the decision about where to split the layers.

@funnylookinhat It might even be possible to do this without it being built-in. If you set up a local flathub repo/mirror and used it instead of the default, then you could do a trick similar to the one I suggested earlier to make the downloads cheap.

This might even already exist.

This is also why I am against Snap, which demands centralization that would prevent a workaround like this one.

@urusan I'd accept the centralization if it meant I didn't have to do workarounds like this. :)

There are trade-offs, sure... but at this point I've got a day job and a toddler, so running updates isn't something I want to spend my free time on. :)

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