Friday, May 15, 2009

Remove The Pop-Up Update Manager

Pop-ups, pop-unders and any window that opens without being given permission is never a good idea. Remember the early days of the internet? This kind of annoying window behavior is unacceptable.


Update Notifier No Roll OverPrior to Ubuntu 9.04, an icon would appear in the notification area, indicating that new system updates were able to be installed. Only after clicking the notification icon would the update manager window appear.

In Ubuntu 9.04 the update-manager behavior was changed. It no longer uses the the notification area to let users know that updates are available. Now Ubuntu auto launches the the update manager window to let user know that software updates are available.

Update Manager Window

What is the point of having a notification area if you aren't going to use it? Even though the update window does not steal focus or stop workflow, it still launches without permission. I find this behavior annoying and contrary to creating a good user interface. Update notifications belong in the notification area. This is one of the new changes in Jaunty that I can't agree with. The good thing is, like everything else in Ubuntu, if you don't like it you can change it.

To stop the update manager window from auto launching and enabling the notification icon in a terminal type:
gconftool -s --type bool /apps/update-notifier/auto_launch false

Update Notifier Setup Properly
- Now when system updates are available the icon appears and Jaunty's beautiful notification system tell you how many updates are available. I think this is a much better way of handling a very important system function. It integrates into the operating system better and gives me back control of my system.

Have a question or problem that this article doesn't cover?
Ask our Ubuntu Mini 9 Google Group for help.


Andrzej said...

Thanks for the tip!

Actually I thought update manager poping up like that is some kind of bug - it is very strange they decided to change it that way...

Ethan Anderson said...

On my system, this update-manager behavior acts like a random race condition. It locks up my machine and forces me to restart X every single time, approaching twice a day.

I hope
gconftool -s --type bool /apps/update-notifier/auto_launch false
makes my OS reliable again.

redDEAD said...

did it work? I doubt this fixed your problem, it seems alot more complex then not having the window appear.

Anonymous said...

This works great on Jaunty, but only partly in Karmic. I reran this after my clean install of 9.10, and the Update Manager doesn't auto-load, but the updates also don't show up in notify-osd like it did in Jaunty.
Thoughts? I'm a huge fan of the gorgeous notifier system.

rudy_mills said...

Same here for Karmic...

Thanks for all of your help!

redDEAD said...

They're not going to show up for Karmic. I'm sure you could write a script but I'm not going to.