My users don't have administrative privileges. I don't allow them to install packages from Ubuntu repositories but they must be able to install all updates availables from Ubuntu repositories and my custom one.

I created the file /var/lib/polkit-1/localauthority/50-local.d/automaticupdates.pkla:

[Update Manager]

This work when no new packages are proposed by software update, but if an updated packages try to push a new package, it fails (=ask for admin password) because it need org.debian.apt.install-or-remove-packages permission.

If I uncheck theses new packages and start the update process, the update starts... and install theses packages anyway even without the permission.

There is a way to make update manager to install all updates without asking for admin password?

This is an example of update not working without admin password:

The following NEW packages will be installed:
linux-headers-3.2.0-33{a} linux-headers-3.2.0-33-generic{a}
The following packages will be upgraded:
apport apport-gtk gir1.2-gtk-3.0 gnome-settings-daemon libgail-3-0
libgtk-3-0 libgtk-3-bin libgtk-3-common linux-generic
linux-headers-generic linux-image-generic linux-libc-dev python-apport
14 packages upgraded, 3 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 0 B/55.4 MB of archives. After unpacking 217 MB will be used.


Another option might be to just turn on unattended upgrades, then the users won't even see the prompts:

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  • This was my "Plan B", I think I will go with that route. – Francis Nov 19 '12 at 14:53

Some updates requires super user aka sudo because of their criticality to systems (I guess). So your idea is partially impossible. I would log in via ssh and do the update after sometimes. If you use the same OS, then when you update yours log to the other computer and update them via ssh

Else if they are so many, either employ a person or give them "sudo" password!

I can't think of better solution!

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  • This doesn't make sense, because if I uncheck the new packages from update-manager UI and install others updates, the new packages are installed anyway (probably because the allowed updates depends on theses packages). – Francis Nov 16 '12 at 20:37
  • @Francis ssh idea makes a perfect sense. – bohdan_trotsenko Nov 16 '12 at 21:02
  • Using ssh to apply updates myself is not really a "solution" but more a hack to bypass the initial problem. Users should be able to install updates available for applications already installed on their computer. – Francis Nov 16 '12 at 21:23

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