Hi. I know that this post is long, but I poured my heart into it. I hope that you really do read every post as the pinned post says.
Now onto the issue: getting Anki on Linux is not as accessible as it can be, when compared to Windows and Mac’s simple GUI installers.
For one, not a single Linux distribution offers the latest version of Anki in their repositories, not even Arch, which is renowned for having the latest version of packages.
Anki’s solution to this issue thus far has been to offer an official .tar.bz2.
That presents many problems, a few of which are:
- it requires fiddling with the command line, a certain know-how that can leave newbies confused and make them give up in exasperation if any, say, dependency issues arise
- it’s a messy way to install and upgrade software
- it’s not as secure as it could be
So I am here to present the solution to all these problems: Flathub.
Now, I noticed that this idea was already suggested here (which I can’t link because of the two-link limit imposed on new users).
But I assume that as busy as you are, you immediately dismissed it out of hand because your first reaction was “Flat-uh-what? What is that? No thanks.”
So I’m here to try to attempt a more convincing argument.
Flathub is an app store. It is probably the most popular Linux app store, and it works on every distro (the ‘backend’ technology being Flatpak). You release once on Flathub, and you instantly reach every Linux distro.
Now I know what you’re thinking: Aren’t there like a dozen competitors (AppImage, Snap, etc.) that all claim to do this for Linux? Why pick Flathub/Flatpak over any of them?
The difference is that Flathub/Flatpak is made by the same developers that work on Freedesktop, GNOME, Wayland, Red Hat, Fedora, and so on. They have a solid history of developing standards that end up being widely adopted and ‘winning’ over the competing standards (Wayland beating Mir, GNOME beating Unity, etc.)
Basically, Flathub/Flatpak is here to stay, and so there is no reason to worry that it is just another flavor-of-the-month that will be abandoned and leave you lamenting wasting your time on a dead platform.
Some examples of popular devs utilizing Flathub officially are Citra, LibreOffice, Mozilla Firefox, and many, many, more.
Many devs have chosen Flathub as their Linux platform of choice because it is the most popular, convenient, and best.
To get to the point, releasing on Flathub would allow:
- the latest version of Anki to instantly reach basically every Linux distro with one single package, no distro-specific tweaks required
- you to just as easily push updates to Anki Flathub users
- newcoming Anki users on Linux to install Anki with a single click, zero knowledge of the command-line or how dependencies required
- newcoming Anki users to keep their Anki updated automatically
- Anki to take advantage of security/sandboxing measures built-into Flatpak
Basically, it’s a huge benefit in every way with no downsides that I am aware of.
The good news doesn’t stop there. Anki is already on Flathub! (Anki’s Flathub page: Flathub—An app store and build service for Linux)
So most of the work is really already done, I think…I apologize if otherwise.
The teeny-tiny problem being that, as of this moment, it’s community-maintained and the maintainer is MIA, so it’s stuck at version 2.1.38.
But you being the dev, all you would have to do is request control, which is simple: App Submission · flathub/flathub Wiki · GitHub
That wiki in general contains all the other necessary info on how to release/maintain an app on Flathub.
Flathub truly is the best, easiest, simplest way to release on Linux and instantly reach every Linux user. I sincerely hope that you consider it.
I swear that I’m not a Flathub/Flatpak employee or anything. Just a Linux user who wants to help Anki become more accessible and successful.
I hope that I convinced you. Thank you for reading!!