Automatic updates option

heiowge
  10 years ago
  23
  Considered

I think it would be a great idea to include the option of automatically updating without having to click on the update manager and punch in the password.

I know it's not that hard to do this, but my kids seem unable to and it's a right royal pain going to the machines and doing it every day or two. It'd be far easier if when they go online, it does it for them in the background.

I'm not after this being on as default, just for it to be an option.
Latest comments
FinixFighter 4 years ago

Promoting! This is a great idea! I have the same problem. There are updates every day (or two) and I can't update all the computers of my friends and relatives every day! XD


JimboJuggs 7 years ago

Yes please, I've convinced a few older relatives of the benifits of Linux Mint. However not everyone finds it easy to keep up to date.
One relative hadn't updated for over a year.


kristbaum 8 years ago

I would be great, please make it happen


squid-f 8 years ago

I really support this idea because I have installed Linux Mint on my mother's laptop and she is not going to do it herself alone : she is always afraid to mess something up. She is 85 years old and I want to make things easy for her.
So, as long as the automatic updates are limited to the 3 first levels, I really don't see an issue with that.

Linux usage can keep growing if its administration can be made simpler for non-IT-savvies. What do you think ?


windyweather 9 years ago

I have 4 linux systems around the house and manually updating them is a pain. I just enabled the auto update and promote the idea of having this be an easily enabled choice in the system. [with a settings panel without sudo gedit being required. ;) ]

BTW, I have a few friends that I have encouraged to use Mint [in some cases in a VM on windows ] as an option for safe on-line financial management [banking]. Those folks would like auto-update since it is the way that their windoze systems are set.


heiowge 10 years ago

"Considered". Non-english for rejected. And no explaination of why. Typical.


Alexio 10 years ago

I posted a tutorial on how to enable unattended software updates on Linux Mint...


Hammer459 10 years ago

If this is a feature that is turned off by default and comes with a strong warning if turned on I could see that it could be reasonable.
Problem is if you add level 4 or 5 or add other repos it should not be allowed (IMHO)
With those conditions I could change to promote


heiowge 10 years ago

I'm not after making this as a standard switched on feature. I just want my kids' computers to automatically update. I have the standard set of updates coming from known servers.

I, (I suspect like the vast majority of people) never check the updates anyway. I trust that the people running the show wouldn't deliberately infect my system with something dangerous. I don't do class 4 or 5 updates.

I get that some people wouldn't want this. They can just choose to never activate it. Why spoil it for everyone who does want it?


Hammer459 10 years ago

@quantumboy this is part of unix/linux security policy since the beginning. Nothing should ever be changed on the system without administrator approval.
In theory automatic updates should be fine. But.... as a collegue once stated... "In theory there is no difference between theory and reality"
Therefore always keeping with the security strategy that has kept Unix secure for 40 years is a good idea.


telcnas 10 years ago

whatever I've mentioned below is w.r.t. this distro of Linux Mint(and other such distros meant for desktop based systems & not server based) and the user other than root for whom the escalation of privileges via sudo is configured by default....

No doubt sudo helps a lot when it comes to restricting access to all the other users......

let me clarify a bit more by saying in this manner:

root: Superuser -> No such thing like sudo over here.

telcnas: Administrator -> Here sudo act as mearly a warning system. For this level of user its ok to go for automatic update without password(providing that you know about possible pitfalls and must not go with safe,unsafe and dangerous updates if configured in auto mode--configure this using preference option from mintupdate).

a,b,guest,etc.. : Standard Users -> Here comes the great advantage of sudo.This level of user may not be allowed to update or to update without password.

Well in the end it all depends upon the user only.....We all know Linux is only limited by our own imaginations.

Having such an option doesn't matters to me... but surely its not a security issue.......


telcnas 10 years ago

Actually the concept behind sudo is to give non-root users access to perform specific tasks without giving away the root password. It is supposed to be configured to allow a certain set of people to run a very limited set of commands, as a different user or regular user.But unfortunetly, this completely does not applies to Linux Mint(unless you are a standard user for whom privilege escalation is not configured by default). But because Linux Mint is meant for personal use mostly, home users have started using sudo for everything. And this creates a doubt that "Why is there a separate root account anyway?"

Now having said that I must say "sudo" does play a very little but important role(wrt to Mint) and that is, It simply makes a warning to the user who is going to perform some sort of operation which requires root previliges(or escalation of previleges). It some how force the user to think twice before going for a particular operation and to find out whether it is safe or not. IN SHORT IT HELPS PREVENTING MAJOR ACCIDENTS ON FREQUENT BASIS.Thats all. Yes this is now what the role of sudo is been diminished to. :)

Now few more things I would like to say:

First as I said that this option of Automatic Update(without prompting for password which happens because of sudo concept) is a good one but again only for those who knows what they are doing, because a possible update might also break your system to a certain limit...and hence I prefer manual update(as I mentioned below) selecting relevant part only.

Secondly if somebody really cares about Security then:

First define good rules in the very default and included firewall(one must learn using iptables efficiently).

Second one must have SELinux(or AppArmour) installed and configured in the system as we all know how SELinux create boundaries and restict communication between applications. I did used SELinux(don't know much about AppArmour) when I used to work on RHEL first and seriously it is one of the most remarkable and mind blowing security protocol(developed by NSA first as an independent platform called Mach and later on, it get integrated at the very kernel level) I've ever seen.
Why is it awesome??? Well there is a lot about it on the internet but in short I must say:
SELinux never says that it is going to restrict every possible intrusion to the system, what it says is that it will restrict the damage done by a particular possible intrusion. Mathematically in terms of Limit it is (Awesome) (raised to the power N) where N tendings to infinity. ;) ;) ;)


Having said that all, I must say that AFAIK the inclusion of this option is not going to compromise the system security but yes it will do increase few risks(or accidents) if you don't know what you are doing.


quantumboy 10 years ago

@Hammer459:
I believe you when you say it's a security issue. I just don't see how it is one. Could you explain it how automatic update could be abused?


Hammer459 10 years ago

It is definitely not a good idea to allow automatic update without entering admin password.
This is a security issue


sujitnag 10 years ago

as per my observation, Linux philosophy is not to change any program file without admin permeation. every thing under the sky has two side.
it protect program code from infection.


telcnas 10 years ago

well its good to have an option of automatic updates without prompting for password once configured.....even though I'm never going to use it as I love updating manully...... :)

promoting....