Can I use GNOME Software to Upgrade My Fedora KDE Workstation?

It’s my understanding that Discover will have the same ability to perform system upgrades as GNOME Software when Fedora 39 rolls around next week. That’s great, but I’ve found Discover to be very unstable. I’ve had it fail to perform upgrades at all and it crashes all the time. I honestly don’t trust it to perform a system upgrade without interruption.

So I was thinking about installing GNOME Software, but will it work for the KDE spin? My experience is that GNOME Software has been more reliable, and it is the officially supported option.

I had a look at the dnf system upgrade plugin process and I have to say…coming from Arch, it looks pretty intimidating with a lot of manual work. I’d like to avoid needing to do that if possible. It’s kinda the main reason I wanted to jump ship from Arch :slight_smile:

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Hi @diligence3569 , welcome to the community!

Yes, i think you should be able to use Gnome-software too. However, installing it will pull in lots of gnome specific dependencies that you probably don’t want on your KDE system.

The dnf process is actually quite straightforward, the page just lists lots of “advanced” things one can do—and should perhaps do even if using gnome-software.

In general, the dnf process is:

# upgrade to ensure latest packages, then reboot:
sudo dnf update -y && sudo reboot

# install the plugin, and download the upgrade
sudo dnf install dnf-plugin-system-upgrade && sudo dnf system-upgrade download --releasever=39

## inspect the output, make sure nothing funky is happening, then run the upgrade
sudo dnf system-upgrade reboot

Then you just wait for it to finish. All the post-installation tasks are good to do, just to ensure that there aren’t any bits left behind.

Note: edited to reduce chaining of upgrade commands


System upgrades through Plasma Discover have been backported to Fedora Linux 37 and Fedora Linux 38.

They will show up on Fedora systems that have both Plasma Discover installed and the fedora-appstream-metadata package installed.

Both Discover and Software use the exact same mechanism to do upgrades by default: PackageKit offline upgrades. If Discover is crashing, please file bugs about it.

We’ve just had a test day with Discover-based upgrades last week, and feedback has been pretty positive.

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Thanks for the response! It turns out, GNOME Software only depends on 4 packages I don’t yet have installed, for a total of 12MB. I already have a few GTK programs installed, so that’s probably why.

I actually like GNOME a lot more than KDE and would have used it were it not for my graphics tablet (though there are definitely some nice features in KDE). KDE Wayland is the only setup that will properly run Krita on my 4K monitor with 200% display scaling while being able to independently control the graphics tablet’s scaling.

On GNOME, things get really funky and I can’t fullscreen Krita, with half of the program split between two monitors, making it unusable. I haven’t tried GNOME on Fedora yet, but that was my experience on Arch and openSUSE Tumbleweed. I’m sure it doesn’t help that I have a NVIDIA GPU :slight_smile:

Thank you for the commands, though! It seems simple enough. I have a UEFI system so I don’t think GRUB was the bootloader…but is that something I need to upgrade manually that DNF won’t handle? Earlier this year, Arch users were required to re-install GRUB manually to avoid rendering the system unbootable and obviously I would like to avoid that. I’m not sure how to check what bootloader i have installed but I get a GRUB selection screen when I boot up, so maybe…?

I was planning on doing so, but I wasn’t sure where to file them (upstream or Fedora?) or if I could reproduce the issues reliably enough or get useful logs. There was at least one crash that was very reliably reproduced in a specific scenario. Most recently, just after installing system updates with Discover and rebooting, Discover tells me I have more system updates to do (exactly 229MB again). So I do it and reboot, and this time Fedora is Installing Updates before it reboots me again. This time, they seem to have actually installed. So I’m not sure what happened there.

I reported the Flathub speed issue upstream because I experienced that one on Arch several times: Slow downloads, change in servers? Australian server? · Issue #2946 · flathub/flathub · GitHub

I’ll see if I can create some bugs here: Log in to Red Hat Bugzilla

@ankursinha Please don’t advise people to run update/upgrade commands with -y and chained with &&. System upgrade is a major step, everyone should first inspect the output, before they confirm the action. We don’t want broken systems and unhappy users because they used such a command and didn’t have the opportunity to read the output and perhaps find out that something was wrong/suspicious. Thanks.

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I agree, which is why I noted that one can run the commands themselves. I’ll edit my post to stress on that more.

As an aside:

what causes some conflict in me here is that we say “everyone should inspect the output etc. etc.” but is this also expected from users when they use the GUI tools? The only documentation on upgrading is here, and I see nothing there that says “inspect the changes and decide if you want to update”—it’s sort of supposed to “just work”, and users aren’t expected to be able to make sense of the changes:

So, why are users expected to inspect the output and decide when using the terminal/dnf? It should also “just work” as long as they run the right commands, no?

Bugs ideally should be filed in the KDE Bugzilla.

Ah, sorry! I hadn’t actually gotten around to filing many yet, so I’ll do the rest upstream to KDE.

There is some output from GUI tools. At the minimum, gnome-software will warn you if some packages need to be completely removed (they are not updates/obsoleted/etc). And users must confirm that they agree. But in general, simplicity is usually at the expense of reliability. That’s why power users usually continue using CLI tools.