Installing/uninstalling software/apps/packages

Perhaps still infected by WindowsWorld/”WinThink”;

Have spent extensive hours scrolling through software/apps/’packages”

Still stumbling/bumbling my way, gathering my bearings in Zorintopia.

In the old country of WindowsWorld, the practice of repeatedly installing and uninstalling software/apps had a tendency to wreak havoc, clutter Win “registry”… and thus to be avoided.

Remnants of uninstalls can leave… “crapware”, even spyware behind.

To the point:
When, via “Software” little blue shopping bag (“software store?”), then center tab “installed” (and/or little blue checkmark)… and selecting “remove”…

Does this actually “uninstall” said software? (i.e. no “remnants” left behind)

Or, is that my relic of “WinThink”? (i.e. Zorin/Ubuntu/Linux doesn’t do that)

Would really prefer not to turn this Zorin install into a cluttered, stumbling junkyard.

OR, perhaps that is the “secret sauce” of Zorin/Linux;

Zorin does not actually “load” software “in the background”, until the Icon for said is actually clicked?

BTW, with the standard warning of: “never install software if you do not trust the source”;

I have never personally met the publishers of Zorin… but have assumed Zorin, from the Zorin website, is reasonably “trustworthy”.

Which leads to the key question:

Is/are software packages/apps available at the “Software Store” deemed, by Zorin, free of bad stuff?

...just a thought.

Not completely. When you uninstall software on Linux there are configuration and other files left behind that will aid in re-installing that particular piece of software or any of its dependencies. The main difference with how Windows used to handle this is that in Linux software is typically handled by a package manager.

For example, most software has a list of dependencies, other packages that it will install to run properly; the package manager can track those down and install them seamlessly. Later, new software that you install that needs some of those already installed dependencies will not need to download them again.
Imagine you remove package A from the system which required dependencies B and C. A few weeks later you delete A, leaving B and C in place, and a few days after that install package Z which as it turns out also needs package B to function properly. Well, you just made the installation of Z that much faster and efficient.

But you are still left with C which no other package seems to need. This is where I would recommend getting a bit familiar with the terminal.

# installs a package
sudo apt install <package_name>

# installs a package without essential dependencies (some features may not work)
sudo apt install --no-install-recommends <package_name> 

# removes a package from the system but not its dependencies
sudo apt remove <package_name>

# removes a pacakge from the system alongside unused dependencies
sudo apt purge <package_name>

# removes unused packages that were installed as dependencies
sudo apt autoremove

These commands are just some of the many that you can use to manage the installation and removal of software in your machine, and is worth looking into them if you're interested in keeping your system lean. Following with the example above, in order to remove C from your system you could simply run sudo apt autoremove.

Unfortunately, the Software Shop does not provide that level of control as it aims for convenience and ease of use. It also provides access to a whole other format of packages called Flatpak and Snaps which have their own terminal commands to manage them, and of course come with their own set of pros and cons.

I can't speak in the name of ZorinOS but I would assume that they are. Is not just ZorinOS looking into this but Canonical (company that created and manages Ubuntu) since ZorinOS is based off of Ubuntu. Linux has used the concept of official repositories to distribute software since the 90's and has long been one of the reasons it is considered more secure than Windows.
To be clear, I'm not saying that it is more secure than Windows, but this practice has sure prevented a bunch of malware from spread between.

Software obtained from the Software Store will also be vetted to be compatible with the current version of the operating system and kernel, which is why sometimes you won't find the latest versions of some packages available.
In the case of Flatpak packages in particular, those are reviewed by the Flathub repositories separately, and I imagine something similar exists for Snaps.


Yes, you have this correct. I notice that previously, you questioned if that Blue Shopping bag Icon is the Software Store: It is. :wink:

It uninstalls the essentials but remnants are left behind.
I need to add some clarity to this because we first must address our assumptions.
The first assumption is: "Leaving remnants behind is always bad."
In actuality, leaving behind personalized configurations for example, is very helpful to the user. Most often, software that is uninstalled gets re-installed later. Leaving behind the config files allows that it will perform just as you last set it up to do so making things easier on the user. These files are often bytes in size, so take up so little space on the drive as to be negligible.

You can remove many leftover files by various means, though.
For example, remove applications using sudo apt remove --purge (Software-Name)
Another is to use something like BleachBit to remove Orphaned files. Orphaned files are those left over files.
Use sudo apt clean && sudo apt autoremove to clean the apt cache and to remove automatically installed additional files and dependencies.

Generally this is true. Any software that is in your AutoStart will launch and run immediately though and this can include any software that runs in the background.
There are also the Updater Services which run in the background which rely on the Gnome-Software Application, so on occasion, if you you are monitoring, it will look like Gnome-Software is running on its own in the background.
This - is just computing. Many system processes must run in the background.

Everything in the Software Store must pass through Lintian. It is test built on a virtual machine and checked for errors and malware.
The maintainers and developers that provide that software must provide their credentials and Identification. In addition to this, they must obtain and provide a unique key to sign their packages with. This is also hashed for further security.
I can attest to this as a maintainer as well as all the hoops I had to jump through in order to become one.

EDIT: I did not actually notice that @zenzen replied to this thread until well after I made my reply. Not sure how I missed it but... Double-points, I guess.


Whenever I used Windows, the best application to remove software was/is Revo uninstaller. I always used the Advance option. Revo would start by using the applications own removal tool, then would scan the registry for leftover flotsam and jetsom. Depending on how complex the application removed was would be mirrored by the amount of registry files left over. In advanced scan mode you checkmark all the reg keys in bold black then after checkmarking complete, select remove. Afterwards, a list of all shortcuts would be given and then just a simple case of selecting all software paths and select delete.


Understood: Originally used Piriform Ccleaner for same/similar purposes...
until Piriform presumed to get "sneaky".
Zorin has also freed me from the expenses/time of Piriform, McAfee and Restoro... that was run at least weekly.
What could be useful is a variant of Piriform "Speccy", which gives an "inventory" of installed hardware/drivers as a .txt files.
thanks for the reply.

You can try lshw-gtk

sudo apt install lshw-gtk

Launch the app and it shows a similar GUI window. It shows as "Hardware Lister" in the app menu.
To use, first click "Refresh". You can then save the output.

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Thanks, (found it under "system tools") does not list installed RAM, disk drives (most likely as additional drives are not "mounted"), Audio/Video hardware or USB-connected accessories.

I am not very familiar with that particular app... I would need to play with it a bit.

The lshw (LiSt HardWare) command is a common one in GnuLinux. Examples:

lshw -C network

lshw -C video

I usually use the terminal commands.

You can also run it with the -html to create file that you can view in your web browser, in case the terminal view is not clear enough.

sudo lshw -html > output.html

I also found this option mentioned in the Mint forums:

I think Hardinfo is basically the terminal version. I tried the gui and it is a bit outdated. It also depends on what distribution of GNU/Linux you are running as to how much the GUI brings back.
Hardinfo (GUI) is discontinued, it's last iteration being 2009 and was written for xfce.

a more modern application is 'Resources':

Could only find Flatpak version:

sudo flatpak install resources

There is also an App Image application, CPU-X:

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You can install cpu-x, as well.

This is my preferred GUI app, as it provides a lot of system information organized across many tabs (Don't forget to scroll the tabs since there are many more than shown in the window).

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Thanks for that info about the tabs. :sunglasses:

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"Driver for GPU 0 doesn't report frequencies
CPU-X:main.c:389: failed to perform the Curl transfer (wrong write data)"
Not too concerned... got the data I was looking for. (detected memory)
BTW, upgraded from 16GB to 32... WOW! pretty snappy for an i5
(or is it just me??)
heard that Linux tends to be a bit of a "memory hog"...
discovered that the Lenovo ThinkCentre (M82) mobo/chipset could recognize up to 32GB... ordered 4 8Gigs... gave it a shot... seems pretty zippy.
CPU-X was the trick :+1: :+1:

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