Choosing "The Right/Legitimate" Version of Software?

One of the (many) reasons I chose to go with the Pro version over Core was having access to applications out of the gate - when I started searching for additional apps from the Software interface, I was suprised to see multiple versions/options that had the same name, or similar names, that accomplished the identical service.

This is what led me to choose to install Bitwarden directly from their official website - I was worried that the apps that were available in the Software pane were not legitimate/supported, and did not want to be giving potentially unofficial apps access to my password library.

This then caused more issues whereby the app I installed this way seemed to live in my downloads folder, and needed to be manually launched from here when I needed to open it -- very inefficient, I finally removed BW from this location and reinstalled using one of the two options from Software.

Now I am looking at installing Dropbox, and once again I have a bevvy of choices, and I am worried again -- is there some way to know what I should or shouldn't be installing? Perhaps this is an option to put a check-mark next to the version that is aligned with the "officially sanctioned" version so noobs like me know which one to choose? (we'll obviously want to avoid devs being able to pay $8/mo to verify themselves... :grin: )

In the Software Center you can see up to 3 different kind of the same software/app. It's because it comes in 1) .deb package 2) flatpak package or 3) as a snap package.

If you're in doubt choose .deb package in my opinion if it's availble, it uses the systems shared libraries instead of flat/snap that rely on you installing the same set of libs for its apps. So avoid space taken up and use of memory go with .deb.

2 Likes

There is no need to worry. All of the applications in the Software Store are official, tested and vetted.
The Software Store only offers applications that are from the Main Universe Repostitory, Zorin OS Official Repository or Flathub or Snap.
There are zero Third Party Applications included in Software Store by default.

That sounds like a Stand-alone application: Appimage.

I agree with @Storm 's recommendation to stick with the Zorin Source. You will find the Source button on the upper right side of the headerbar when you select an application in the Software Store. IF the source button does not appear, that means that there is only one source available - the official Zorin OS source.
If the source button does appear, it means that package may be available as a Flatpak or a Snap package.

Flatpak and Snap packages are a topic discussed at great length on the forums. They are both an alternative software installation method- developed by Gnome and Canonical respectively. Both are vying to be the "new" source method and both... are lacking. I not only avoid them, I remove flatpak and snapd from my system entirely.
I got away from Microsoft Windows to halt companies forcing their wishes on me... I did not migrate to Linux only to get more of that same treatment.

All are official.
Snap and Flatpak both end up "Double sandboxing" their applications, so Dropbox may not work as well being isolated from the necessary system files. I would recommend using the Zorin Source (.deb package from APT). That way, the application will be fully meshed instead of locked in a box.
For an application that must have the ability to communicate outside of itself, locking it in a box is counterintuitive.

--Snicker--

2 Likes

Thanks for this - just for my clarification, where's the "Source" button? Can you paste a screenshot?

For example, I search Dropbox in the bar, and I get these three suggestions:


2 and 3 have the same name, and clicking on either I see nothing in the headerbar (unless I am not looking in the right place), so are these both "Zorin source"?

Under the Source line lower on the page I can see that one flatpack and the other is Focal Multiverse.. so I should just use the latter?

Don't mind it says RPM on my system as I'm using a rpm OS.

I cannot from my computer... Since I remove Snap and Flatpak both as well as the gnome-software-flatpak-plugin and the gnome-software-snapd-plugin
The Source Button does not appear for me, ever.
However, the Zorin Help Page happens to include a screenshot here:

And you can see the Source Button on the upper right. The source in this screenshot shown is Flathub (Flatpak package).

You are absolutely correct that you do not need the Source Button.:

You can view the source on any application. The Source button was added in order to make things easier on new users by increasing its visibility.