Libre Office stays open when a component is used

So okay. Sorry for such a simple question but there’s an area of LInux I just don’t get.

I just did a fresh install of Zorin yesterday because something broke. I want to be very conservative to see if the OS is breaking itself or I am.

Today I noticed that Writer or Impress opens the entire suite in the background, LibreOffice. That is: if I open writer and then close it, LibreOffice itself is still open. I wanted to find a way to make it not do that, like on my PC.

So I uninstalled LibreOffice via the Software store, hoping it would remove the ‘suite’ version but leave behind the individual versions. Turns out they’re connected. No problem.

When I re-installed from the Software store I notice all the distro defaults were gone. For instance – the dark mode I chose for Zorin was no longer inside of LibreOffice. On top of that the store gave me version 7 whereas Zorin gave me 6.something.

See, that right there, is annoying. I did what was intuitive and got a sideways result. I’m now concerned I just ‘broke’ this version of Zorin since what was originally there is gone.

Yes? No? Time will tell? Bueller?

Umm… you might get mad at me for this but…
SNAP!

The installed version with Zorin is the normal version. The one listed in The Ubuntu Software Store is… Snap Install. Which is why it is not following your system themes and settings.

I knew it was coming, lol.

Okay, but here’s the thing. I now need specifics.

  1. Will it work fine? Or will it bork Zorin? If bork –

  2. – how do I install the version that was there? If you say ‘terminal’ or ‘synaptic’ I need to know exactly how.

If no I’m fine.

It probably will work fine. Snap does have some security issues to be wary of.

Perform a removal of the version you have, first. In terminal, you can use

sudo snap remove libreoffice

Or use the software store as you used it to install it.

To install, you can use the libreoffice direct ppa

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:libreoffice/ppa

sudo apt update && sudo apt install libreoffice

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Regarding snap security –

Are you saying a third party could exploit the Libre SNAP on
Software? Because if YES that, to me, condemns all computing.

If you’re saying, no, Libre itself could exploit my trust and look around – tell me how I don’t know Zorin isn’t already doing just that?

If neither of these apply, what does?

LibreOffice is Not Malware nor is LibreOffice using any exploits.

A third party can exploit security flaws in Snap and Snapd, not relevant to which package, such as LibreOffice.
I do not see any way in which this can “condemn all computing.”

Thanks for replies. I get that you have a thing against Snaps, and that Mint has a serious thing against it, but here’s what you said –

A third party can exploit security flaws in Snap and Snapd –

– sure, okay, but 3rd party exploits are everywhere. Nothing anywhere is technically safe. This is why –

  1. MS spends morning, noon, and night patching things.
  2. Security patches routinely show up in Zorin’s ‘software update’
  3. Apps are being pulled from stores all the time in iOS and Android
  4. Firefox warns of extensions they don’t watch

Are snap and snapd exploits known and notorious? Because if it’s something that only could happen… all sorts of things can and could happen in all of computing… which is why I said that.

Say Libre said, enough, and removed itself from said store. That would tell me a lot. I sense they’re not convinced it’s that critical.

Not really, actually. You can say that anything can technically be exploited, but the reality is that the Difficulty In exploiting something is what matters most. A hole in Security matters more than the remote possibility that someone may punch a hole.

Many of us “have a thing against Snaps” for very Good Reasons. It is impractical to be dismissive of that as if it is wanton opinion or that “technically it is possible that anything could be exploited.” Security holes and ease of exploitation are what really matters, not far-distant possibilities.

LibreOffice does not have much choice in the matter, actually. Canonical does.

I hear you. I’m just saying it is therefore weird for most distros to include such a store (typically the same exact store) if the distro would rather you not use it.

I’m okay with Libre as it is because I’m almost never going to use it on this specific PC. I was just trying to understand.

Thanks for your thoughtful responses. It’s a little clearer.

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You’re about to get a long paragraph.
This is a very valid point. I think a few perspectives should be necessary.
Snap Installs seem to have come up a lot in your threads lately. It is not often discussed, actually.
The Zorin OS Distro does not discourage its use. Some members and users of Zorin OS, such as myself, do. The Software Store is included because Zorin OS seeks to help transition a user from Windows To Linux and it is Easy to Use and generally functional.
When I transitioned from Windows to Linux using Zorin OS as my first distro, it was a very trying experience. What we who have used it for a while take for granted or just accept as nuances of a different OS is daunting or confusing to a person using it for the first time.
It was only a little over a year ago that I was told by Swarfendor and ZorinAntwerp that it is best to just avoid the Software Store. And it confused me as to why.
I did not really listen… But after a while of using it, I began to see why.
It’s a good starter or learning tool, but it is not the best way to manage packages.
As far as Snap Packages:
If you are shopping for a car being Safety Minded, you might think of Volvo or Toyota Camry. You would not necessarily look at the Ford Pinto or the Suzuki Samurai. Is it possible you can crash and burn in a Volvo? Yes. But there is still a big difference and you do not necessarily see any potential possibility as truly weighing in on your decision.
Snap also has another series of issues. This first is the Big One for most of us:
While Apple and MS routinely get away with breaking their word, we do not want that going on Here. Canonical promised at the outset that Snap Would Not Replace Package Handling. And then, they broke that promise. It is very important that we users hold these behaviors accountable, lest we end up with (Which we slowly are ending up with anyway) Windows On Linux.
It is essential and crucial that we protest and stand and be heard on FOSS.
In addition to this, Snap brings Bloat, poor compatibility and greater difficulty in troubleshooting application troubles.
That it is a bit of a bad hand over-all that is then Snuck Into the System by Canonical and the Software Store is the icing on the cake.

A user may Like Snap Packages. They may prefer them. And that is perfectly valid and permissible. However, if we do not like them, we find it not valid nor permissible to have them now being forced on us when better options are usable and when Snap also contains the ‘control’ that we resist.

After the local co-ordinator warned me that Snapd is as bad a security risk as telnet or finger I removed snap from my install then used Synaptic Package Manager to install the last stable release there, 6.4.x.

For the low-down on how to remove snap:

I know y’all are passionate about this subject – but what it reveals is that Zorin isn’t ready for prime time for the normal user.

It means that the next version of Zorin needs to abandon snap and create a very easy way to get apps and updates.

I just opened Synaptics. To a normal person it’s not clear how it works. It makes me wonder how Mint is handling things. If they expect people to use the terminal and synaptics – you can kiss Windows and Mac switchers goodbye.

Synaptic isn’t that hard - you search for some software, enter the name of what you are looking for and it brings back results. I was going to do a guide at one bit but why reinvent the wheel?:

Also as a Linux user stated on another forum once - “At least I know what is going on under the hood” - you don’t with Windows and Mac because they are closed source systems. And also you don’t own the software, just a licence to use it. :wink:

You are making very good points. I can see both sides. But as I am a rather fresh migrant, moving to Linux within a little over a year, I still have very fresh memories of what my migration was like and the struggles I felt.

This is quite a stretch. Any Ubuntu Derivative has the Software Store and Canonical is the large entity behind it. Passing your concerns solely onto Zorin OS is illogical. You could use that statement to support the idea that there is no OS ready for “prime time”.

This… really depends on what you mean by easy. I think that there is a difference between “familiar” and “easy.”
Terminal installations are Very Easy.
Many people whom I have recently helped transition to Linux have loved the terminal.
It is true that Win users are not usually familiar with the terminal. And the unfamiliar can look “hard” when it is not hard.
Synaptic is also very easy. I remember looking at Synaptic when I first installed it and complaining that it was unclear what to do. I remember saying the same things.
Until I used it a couple times.
And this really is the point… How willing is a person to Learn instead of expecting a machine to think and do for them?
How far is the user willing to let the machine take control if they do not wish to learn?
Synaptic and the Terminal are both very easy and very powerful installation tools. But, a person does need to be willing to learn how to use the tools.

And now - I will draw fire. I will speak bluntly and mean.

Maybe… if a bunch of users are migrating over that do not want to learn, are unwilling to put on the Big Boy pants and wish to be pandered to with FREE development and FREE software and FREE open source… Maybe we do not want them.
Maybe if they cannot hoist themselves up by their bootstraps and engage themselves, they can stick with Win and complain all day about it while hoisting themselves up by their own petard, instead.

Got some ideas from reading all this.
Looking at this, the market shares seem to be staying the same.
With ~1/3rd of the total Win users being on 7. It seems the Win 7 folks are taking their time to switch to alternatives. We don’t know for certain how it will end. However, realizing that pretty much all of us on this forum are not representative of the typical Windows user, I will wager that most of them go to 10 or to Mac. Anyway, this is just my guess based on the data.
My wife, on the other hand, is a typical Windows user and now loves Zorin as the only OS on her machine. I must disclose that she was uncomfortable with the Windows Control Panel (she never actually used it - only knew how to fire it up and then have me take over) and she would be equally (likely more) uncomfortable with Synaptic, if I ever showed her Synaptic. :grin:

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Actually you’re stretching. I never said only Zorin was in peril. This is Zorin board, you suggested the snap situation compromises Zorin’s security, and I was agreeing with you.

If the significantly easier way to obtain software is compromised, any OS using that store is compromised. It was created to make things easier for the average user – and if it’s not working properly – any OS relying upon it is not ready for prime time.

Mint has sort of sealed the deal by withdrawing from it. I don’t know a lot about Linux but I do know of the legendary Mint distro, currently #3 in distrowatch. (Never liked it when I tried it despite loving the name of it, lol.)

I anticipated that, lol. Hence why I said very easy way. A very easy way would be a Software Store-esque shell around Synaptics.

Understand I’m speaking on behalf of the average user… old dogs that, if they’re to learn new tricks – want it very easy.

Listen. I don’t want to keep going 'round and 'round on this. I get that you want the snap business gone. My vote is the Linux community force Canonical (or whoever) to fix your security fears.

You’ve done a poor job of hiding that chip on your shoulder. From your very first post to me you mocked noobs who couldn’t be bothered to put three little commands in a terminal.

In that post you gave me code to do just that. And the code didn’t work, did it?

I’d advise you to calm down. You’re so caught up in the big picture politics of snap and Canonical you’re making this wide-eyed noob uncomfortable.

I’d gladly contribute to this distro once I’m convinced it’s stable and not cutting edge. That jury is out.

General comment.
I originally looked at Zorin as a more secure alternative to end of life XP on a very old but serviceable laptop. It is used for running a few apps not for Linux tinkering, except for maintenance and backup.
I have learned about Linux whilst problem solving.
When I first started using Zorin (v12) I used “Software” as primary means of installing/removing apps. That seemed a decent and secure way of obtaining software from a trusted repository and a similar experience to Software Store on Android etc. I still use “Software” on 15.3 Core, but now have to look carefully to check if the item is a Snap package or not.
The old laptop has a small HDD, so app installation has to be efficient as well as secure. Synaptic is a half way house. Once you have learned how to use it it is good but very comprehensive, it offers a reasonable and logical way of adding, removing and repairing apps. But for noobs, who may have less understanding of the guts of computing, it may be a bit scary.
I just hope “Software” does not become an app store only containing Snaps. That way us migrants from that other operating system with old hardware may continue to enjoy installing and running our apps easily and securely under Zorin.

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I don’t understand why the user needs to remove snapd from the system at all. Just don’t use snaps. In the software store it tells you whether the app you are looking at comes from the snap store or not. However snaps are maybe not loved because gasp Canonical, but flatpaks are not without problems as well.

Also everyone arguing about security and computing here are talking about the same things and it is semantics at best.

The truth of the matter is, Linux appears secure because it is obscure on the desktop. (servers are a different matter) If Linux desktop has the market share that Windows has, you can bet that there would be an avalanche of vulnerabilities discovered and Linux would fail horribly. It is profitable to write maleware for Windows and to a lesser extent Mac OS. The mass majority of people using Linux don’t pay a single cent for the software. There is no money in developing Linux maleware.

But the other reason Linux would fall flat if the tables were reversed is because for one it doesn’t have an army of well paid developers working specifically against that like Microsoft, Apple, or Google does. People who have been in those trenches for decades and are experts at it.

People who use Linux as a Windows or Mac OS replacement are just deluding themselves if they think they are in a more secure position because of it.

The reason to use Linux is privacy, not security.

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Actually, I quote you directly.

What, exactly IS the difference between “easy” and “VERY easy”? The concept of it being ‘easy’ is not good enough? It must be VERY easy? Is there a price to be paid for that? Does that price make me uncomfortable?

What if I told you that you are making me uncomfortable with your repeated mocking of the length of some of my posts? When I took the time to try to help you, you mocked how long the post was?

What if I told you that it makes me uncomfortable that we must constantly address that a lack of familiarity with a system means that the user must learn how to make the unfamiliar into familiar with learning? Does it make me uncomfortable to repeatedly need to address that using the terminal is, in fact, easy? You do not get to claim that that is “mocking.”

Linux is a Developed Operating System and what you refer to as 'Noobs" migrate to it and they routinely learn how to use it.
But it is standard that a new user must be willing to learn how to use the tools instead of expecting or requiring that the tools be simplified and adapted to that user who is unwilling to learn.

And if we do not address it and speak up… Then what happens? Well… it already is happening: Snap. Flatpack. We Must Speak Up. And yes, it means that sometimes, I am not always perfectly calm. Because it is deeply affecting so many users. You are a long time user of 29 years, so you know what the feeling is.
Many, many users join the forums and express a willingness to learn.
This forum is in place to help users to Learn and to get Help with troubleshooting and problem solving. Not to constantly rebut claims about how Zorin OS makes using Linux Hard for a person unwilling to use the provided tools.

I am not a representative of Zorin OS. But as a member, I speak as a representative of all users of all distros. And as such, I make the reminder and I will continue to make the reminder: A visitor does not get to walk into our home and change the furniture to suit themselves.

I do understand that changing an operating system and learning a lot of new things is trying. I said so above - I am a noob.
However, the user must accept that learning is part of the deal when they accept the operating system instead of repeatedly suggesting that the operating system must be made Very Easy to suit them. You are not talking about bugs and glitches, here. You are talking about the Software Installations that while easy, are not being easy enough for you.

Significantly easier:

sudo snap install ______

sudo apt-get install ______

I disagree.