Ubuntu Technical Board Looks at Automatix

Automatix is an easy to use high level package manager for commonly requested applications. It has been recommended for new Ubuntu users who want to easily set up their system with applications. However, some say that Automatix has serious problems.

The Ubuntu Technical Board has recently reviewed Automatix. They found that Automatix’s problems make it unsupportable in Ubuntu. Here are the issues that look most significant to me:

Personally, I think that the need for Automatix is small now. For many applications it is simple to download packages and install them from the Internet even when they are not in a repository, and the automatic codec installer and restricted manager both work well. However, Automatix can easily get some otherwise challenging-to-install software. I am not sure if any of these reasons are good enough to stop me from recommending Automatix to newbies. Their website sums up what I think, which is that the majority of users are not affected by these problems.

Is Automatix2 safe? Folks in #ubuntu on IRC keep telling me it isn’t.
Yes, it is perfectly safe. Thousands of users worldwide use Automatix2 every day without any issues.

Archived Comments


Most of the software Automatix installs is not especially challenging to obtain. Automatix may not cause any up front problems for many users, but you’ll likely find significant problems when upgrading.

You might want to take a second look at those issues. Any if the Ubuntu technical board does not recommend Automatix, frankly that should be good enough for you, and you should stop recommending Automatix to unsuspecting “newbies”.

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