Disable automatic Flatpak updates

I have to say I feel slightly ambiguous about Flatpak. On one hand, I’m really glad it allows me to run applications like Spotify, Zoom or Skype on my computers in a convenient way. Applications that are not open sourced, that are developed by who knows who and who knows how and that, unless sandboxed inside Flatpak, I probably wouldn’t be even installing on my box, worrying about them causing a mess.

On the other hand, this approach of having everything bundled together feels a bit like something that we find in the Windows world – everything comes with its own set of libraries, taking up more space and, more importantly, resulting in less oversight of how well and often the libraries are updated.

That being said, I’m still using Flatpak, happy to be able to listen to music using Spotify or to join an occasional Skype call with someone who still insist on using it.

The one thing that I really dislike about it, though, is automatic updates. On my desktop and laptops, I still prefer to apply the updates myself, and with Flatpak and Gnome, the default is for it to get updated automatically. I know it says that automatic updates are disabled when on a mobile or metered connection, but what if I turn my phone into a hotspot, does it consider it to be a mobile connection, or is it treated simply just as any other wifi would be? I don’t know really, but even if connection is not metered, I might be running on a battery so I prefer to switch it off anyway.

Here’s how I got to the settings in Gnome.

Open software management.
In the left upper corner, select Update Preferences.
Switch Automatic updates off.