How to remove snap completely without losing the Chromium browser?

I am wondering whether or not there is a way to completely remove snap from Ubuntu 19.10 without losing the ability to install important applications like Chromium.

When I just recently updated to the newest Ubuntu release I realized that the installer programmatically reinstalled snap, although I had manually removed it before. Additionally the installer removed Chromium, which was installed via the repositories, and reinstalled it via snap.

As I don’t want snap to be installed on my machines for various reasons my question is if anybody knows a safe way to remove it, and to get the Chromium DEB back to the sources?

Is there a PPA? Could I use a source of an Ubuntu flavor additionally, which didn’t remove the Chromium Deb from its sources?

Asked By: user5950

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You can use APT to add the repository for Chromium. Then you won’t need snapd at all.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chromium-team/stable
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt install chromium
Answered By: javaprogrammercy

This PPA seems to work great for this purpose: https://launchpad.net/~saiarcot895/+archive/ubuntu/chromium-dev It’s the dev branch, but besides that, it’s perfect.

Answered By: gaycoonie

September 2022 Update:

Ubuntu and Debian both got new releases since I originally wrote this article. The exact steps described here might not work on them. (I haven’t checked.)

Ubuntu 20.04 users will probably still get good results by replacing stable with buster in the sources.list.d file described below, for as long as Debian continues to support their Buster release.

I am leaving this post in place because it describes general techniques for cherry picking packages from debian-compatible repos for use on different distributions or releases.


Debian Repo Saves the Day!

(Full article here)

Debian still maintains Chromium as a regular package in their APT repository. We can configure Ubuntu to get it from there, and continue to receive timely security updates along with all of our other OS updates. This makes sense from a security perspective, since Debian is where Ubuntu already gets most of its packages, and is a very well known high-profile project. There is no need to risk installing software from some random source or telling your system to trust a PPA.

Obligatory Warning: This is entirely unsupported and could conceivably cause problems either immediately or in the future. If you break something, it’s your own fault.

Here’s what I did on Ubuntu 19.10:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

That brings all my already-installed Ubuntu packages up to date, so it will be easier to see how upgrades are affected after I make my changes.

snap remove chromium

Bye bye, annoying snap.

sudo apt purge chromium-browser chromium-chromedriver

Bye bye, fake Chromium packages. (You can leave out the chromium-chromedriver part if that package isn’t installed on your system.)

umask 22

That just makes sure that the files I create will be readable by everyone, including the system.

Create an /etc/apt/sources.list.d/debian-stable.list file containing:

deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/debian-archive-keyring.gpg] http://deb.debian.org/debian stable main
deb-src [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/debian-archive-keyring.gpg] http://deb.debian.org/debian stable main

deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/debian-archive-keyring.gpg] http://deb.debian.org/debian-security/ stable-security main
deb-src [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/debian-archive-keyring.gpg] http://deb.debian.org/debian-security/ stable-security main

deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/debian-archive-keyring.gpg] http://deb.debian.org/debian stable-updates main
deb-src [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/debian-archive-keyring.gpg] http://deb.debian.org/debian stable-updates main

That tells apt to look for packages not only in the Ubuntu archives, but also in the Debian stable archives. This is ordinarily a bad idea, because you don’t want hundreds of random Ubuntu packages being replaced with Debian versions, which would very likely break your system. However, we’re going to add some rules to avoid this problem.

Note: The /usr/share/keyrings/debian-archive-keyring.gpg file referenced above, along with several other Debian keyring files, are already present on my Ubuntu system thanks to the debian-archive-keyring package. It may already be on your system, too, but if not, you should install it: sudo apt install debian-archive-keyring

Create an /etc/apt/preferences.d/debian-chromium file containing:

Explanation: Allow installing chromium from the debian repo.
Package: chromium*
Pin: origin "*.debian.org"
Pin-Priority: 100

Explanation: Avoid other packages from the debian repo.
Package: *
Pin: origin "*.debian.org"
Pin-Priority: 1

The first stanza assigns a below-normal priority to Debian Chromium packages; just high enough to allow them to be manually installed and automatically updated, but not high enough to be preferred over Ubuntu packages. This is called apt pinning, and is described in the apt_preferences manual. The second stanza assigns a very low priority to all other Debian packages, so they will only be automatically installed or updated if necessary to satisfy a dependency.

(I suppose I could have assigned a much higher priority to Debian’s Chromium packages if I needed them to override Ubuntu’s, but since they use different package names, no overriding is necessary. I could also have pinned all of the Debian repo at priority 100; that would make any Debian-only dependencies eligible for automatic updates, effectively treating the Debian repo like Ubuntu Backports in manual install mode. I chose the more conservative approach just to be cautious.)

sudo apt update

That refreshes the package database, so my Ubuntu system now knows about everything in the Debian archives that I added.

apt upgrade --simulate

That shows me what a system-wide package upgrade would do, without actually doing it. Since I already did an upgrade before making any changes, I don’t expect to see any upgradable packages listed here.

If one or two upgradable packages were listed, it could mean that Ubuntu happened to release some updates while I was working, which is normal. I would ask apt where each of those updates come from before proceeding, with apt policy package-name. If any of them were from the Debian archives, I would consider reverting my changes, by removing the files I created and running sudo apt update again.

If many upgradable packages were listed, it would probably mean that apt now thinks Debian’s packages are valid replacements for Ubuntu’s packages, which I do not want. This would happen if I made a mistake in those files I created. I would revert my changes, by removing the files I created and running sudo apt update again. I might then consider starting over and typing more carefully.

All was well at this point (no upgradable packages were listed), so I proceeded.

sudo apt install chromium

The package manager then asked me to confirm, listing chromium and a small handful of dependency packages needed by Chromium. Once again, if many packages were listed here, I would investigate and consider reverting my changes. (I investigated each dependency anyway, because I’m careful, and found that only one of the dependencies was coming from the Debian archive: libjpeg62-turbo, and it doesn’t conflict with anything I have installed.) All looked well, so I told the package manager to proceed.

When it finished, Chromium was finally installed as an apt package. Thanks, Debian maintainers!

I don’t use any snaps, so the next thing I did was to look in the snap directory in my home dir, make sure there was nothing in there that I needed, and then drop it in the trash. If you want to do the same, consider first that any user data that you created/modified/saved in Chromium since the snap was first installed lives somewhere under that snap folder. (Probably under snap/chromium/current/.config which is hidden by default in most file managers.) You might want to back it up or move it to chromium’s usual data directory: $HOME/.config/chromium. In my case, the Chromium data that I wanted to keep was still in its old/usual place, since I had only used the snap for about five minutes.

That’s it. I hope it helps someone. If it damages your system, steals your bike, runs off with your boyfriend, or does something else that you don’t like, then I’m sorry, but it’s still your own responsibility.

Good luck!

Answered By: ʇsәɹoɈ
sudo snap remove chromium    
sudo apt purge snapd    
rm -rf ~/snap

add repo

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chromium-team/dev

change eoan to disco in /etc/apt/sources.list.d/chromium-team-dev.list

if file not exist or empty then paste that:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/chromium-team/dev/ubuntu disco main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/chromium-team/dev/ubuntu disco main

then update

sudo apt update
    

check

apt policy chromium-browser

install

sudo apt install chromium-browser
Answered By: Evgeniy Bespalov

Similar to forest’s example above i did the following:

# first add the beta repo, the stable isn't possible as it doesn't get updated
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chromium-team/beta

# now edit the file, changing the reference to disco, instead of eoan:
sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list.d/chromium-team-ubuntu-stable-eoan.list
    deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/chromium-team/beta/ubuntu disco main

# Now update the repos:
sudo apt update

Now pin the repository order:
sudo nano /etc/apt/preferences.d/chromium

    Explanation: Disallow installing chromium from ubuntu repo.
    Package: chromium*
    Pin: origin "*.ubuntu.com"
    Pin-Priority: 1
    
    Explanation: Allow installing chromium from launchpad repo.
    Package: chromium*
    Pin: origin "ppa.launchpad.net"
    Pin-Priority: 100

# Check which version is to be installed:
apt policy chromium-browser

# Now we can install chromium (the extra codecs resolve playback issues):
sudo apt install chromium-browser chromium-codecs-ffmpeg-extra
Answered By: eitch

I have nothing against snap in theory, but spamming my mounts, processes, and filesystem is just too darn much. I only used it for one thing (the micro editor) before chromium was pushed on me as well. (And is not needed for micro anymore either in 20.04.)

Remove snap*, and prevent its return:

sudo apt remove --purge snapd -y    # may take a while
killall snap snapd                  # probably not necessary

sudo rm -rf /snap /var/cache/snapd/ # buh-bye
rm -rf ~/snap                       # that one too!
sudo apt-mark hold snap snapd       # prevent reinstall

Install chromium, dev or beta:

# sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chromium-team/dev
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:saiarcot895/chromium-beta
# sudo apt update                   # if it didn't already
sudo apt install chromium-browser

Micro editor – before < 20.04 Focal

# install it from snap beforehand or compile, then copy locally:
cp micro ~/bin

Micro editor – after >= 20.04 Focal

sudo apt install micro
Answered By: Gringo Suave

You can download latest official .deb build for Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal), 21.04 (Hirsute) and 21.10 (Impish) here:
https://launchpad.net/~phd/+archive/ubuntu/chromium-browser/

This is a PPA repository with official Ubuntu packages released originally for Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (Bionic) and updated as soon as a new version is released.

UPDATE:

Since April 2023 Canonical does no longer provide
Chromium .deb packages for any version of Ubuntu.
Hence THIS REPOSITORY WILL NO LONGER BE UPDATED.
You may want to switch to:
https://freeshell.de/phd/chromium

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