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Linux Mint will inform users about important security updates but not enforce them
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[Image: linux-mint-update-notification.png]

Last month, the Linux Mint team announced that it wanted to do something about systems not being upgraded to newer versions. Systems that were not supported anymore were vulnerable to attacks, and the same was true for systems that had not the latest security updates installed.

This week, the team announced that it found a solution to the problem. Good news is, that it does not involve enforcing updates on user systems. Instead, the team created a notification system for updates that informs users about them.

Unlike Microsoft on Windows 10, which pushes updates and notifications hard on users, the team decided to create a solution that gives users a lot of flexibility when it comes to updates and is not annoying.
 
Quote:We designed a notification system which acts as a gentle and welcome reminder and took great care not to turn it into an annoyance.

The new notification prompt displays the same information as the tray icon, but since it is a prompt, it is more noticeable.

Users may dismiss notifications, view the updates that are available or enable automatic updates. Dismissed notifications go away for 2 days and when updates are installed, new notification prompts are not shown for "a long time", which means for 30 days.

Here are the defaults in list form:
  • Only kernel and security updates are displayed via the new notification prompts.
  • A notification is only shown if an update has been available for at least 7 days (logged-in days).
  • A notification is shown if an update is older than 15 days.
  • Update notifications are not shown for 30 days if an update was applied via the Update Manager or any other APT software.
All defaults can be configured by the user in the preferences.

Administrators may also disable automatic update checks or the Update Manager itself if they don't want to install updates at all on their devices.

Closing Words

The new update notifications will increase the number of Linux Mint systems that get updated regularly, and reduce the number of outdated systems. The option to configure update settings and even turn them off completely if not needed gives everyone control over updates, just like before.

Now You: how do you handle updates, and would you prefer a similar system on Windows?
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