Sublime Text has recently switched from .deb file downloads for installation to a Debian/Ubuntu repository, see here.

Both a dev and a stable channel are provided.

At present my /etc/apt/sources.list.d/sublime-text.list has one entry in it, as below, the dev channel.

deb https://download.sublimetext.com/ apt/dev/

What happens if a new stable release is made?

If I add the stable channel as well, as below, will apt look at both channels and install the highest release number automatically? Or is the addition of both channels a bad idea for some reason?

deb https://download.sublimetext.com/ apt/dev/
deb https://download.sublimetext.com/ apt/stable/


1 Answer 1


Assuming the two repositories offer the same packages in potentially different versions then they will not interfere with each other. Apt will simply install whichever package has a "higher" version number which is most likely the one from the development channel.

If the repositories offer different packages and aren't well maintained then it's possible that their simultaneous inclusion will cause package management issues like with any other set of package repositories.

  • Thanks David. For clarification: what would happen if the dev channel also included the stable release in its feed so that both channels offered the same version? I am keen to avoid the inconvenience of having to manually change the channel in the sublime-text.list file when there is a stable release to make sure the most recent release gets installed.
    – mattst
    Jun 9, 2017 at 20:10
  • In that case the package with the "higher" version string will be installed (if it's also higher than the currently installed version) like I explained in my answer. Assuming the packages in that repository are packaged have a sane versioning scheme that should be either the latest development or the latest stable release depending on which one is newer. Jun 9, 2017 at 20:14
  • You misunderstand: what happens if the same version is offered by BOTH channels, i.e. Sublime add a new stable release to the dev feed as well as in the stable feed?
    – mattst
    Jun 9, 2017 at 20:17
  • 1
    If both the package name and version strings are identical then Apt will assume that both packages are identical and pick one arbitrarily. This happens all the time in the different channels of Ubuntu's official package repositories. If the package maintainers disregard this assumption they're doing it wrong and you should file a bug report. ;-] Alternatively you can try to work around that and configure Apt to assign different priorities based on the package source. Jun 9, 2017 at 20:24

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