Launcher items get "stale" after app upgrades

Bug #1239750 reported by Michał Sawicz on 2013-10-14
This bug affects 6 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
URL Dispatcher
Fix Released
Ted Gould
Gerry Boland
unity-mir (Ubuntu)
unity-scope-click (Ubuntu)
Alejandro J. Cura
unity8 (Ubuntu)
Michael Zanetti

Bug Description

If you have an app pinned to launcher and upgrade it, it will get "stale" in that it will still reference the old version.

We need to make sure to store appids excluding version numbers for the launcher.

The defaults should take that into account, too.


1. Install a click app from the store
2. Run the app
3. while running, open the launcher, and long press on the icon, and choose "pin to launcher"
4. as the developer update the application in the store
5. back on the phone, runn sytem updates and update the app
6. open the launche
7. click on the launcher

A black screen appears and the app never runs

The launcher launches the app when clicked

Related branches

Michał Sawicz (saviq) wrote :

We need support for appid:// format in url dispatcher for this.

Changed in url-dispatcher:
status: New → Fix Committed
Bill Filler (bfiller) wrote :

Some comments from email thread on this discussion:
Looking at plugins/Unity/Launcher/backend/launcherbackend.cpp it looks like the code only handles application://<desktopfile> urls. In the case of click packages, it should handle appid:// url's like: appid://, similar to how url-dispatcher handles them (or some other form that doesn't require the specific version number). The internal code could stay the same, just need some sort of lookup mechansim to map from current-user-version to an absolute path to the desktop file.

Otherwise, if I want gallery to show up in the launcher as it does today
I have to put the full path of the click's desktop file that includes
the version:

This seems problematic as it will break when gallery version is updated.

Michael Zanetti (mzanetti) wrote :

The linked branch for the launcher adds support for finding .desktop files by short-appid (e.g. This should fix the issues inside the launcher, however, to completely fix this issue, we also need to adapt unity-mir's ApplicationManager to support the short-appid format.

Changed in unity-mir:
assignee: nobody → Gerry Boland (gerboland)
Charles Kerr (charlesk) on 2014-03-05
Changed in url-dispatcher:
assignee: nobody → Ted Gould (ted)
Changed in unity8:
status: Triaged → In Progress
Gerry Boland (gerboland) on 2014-05-12
Changed in unity-mir:
status: New → In Progress
importance: Undecided → High
description: updated
Changed in unity-scope-click (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
status: Confirmed → Triaged
importance: Undecided → High
assignee: nobody → Alejandro J. Cura (alecu)
Michał Sawicz (saviq) on 2014-05-13
Changed in unity-mir (Ubuntu):
status: New → In Progress
Changed in unity8 (Ubuntu):
status: New → In Progress
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

This bug was fixed in the package unity-mir - 0.4+14.10.20140516.2-0ubuntu1

unity-mir (0.4+14.10.20140516.2-0ubuntu1) utopic; urgency=low

  [ Gerry Boland ]
  * Add support for short appIds Shells should use only short AppIds
    (i.e. appId without the version string). In order to support this,
    needed to slightly decouple appId from the desktop file path, now
    need to ask the ApplicationController implementation for the path to
    the desktop file. DesktopFileReader now just a dumb file reader. in
    the upstart ApplicationController interface & implementation,
    convert any long appIds to short appIds. in ApplicationManager, to
    ease transition, have startApplication support both long & short
    appIds. But otherwise it uses short appIds only. (LP: #1239750)
 -- Ubuntu daily release <email address hidden> Fri, 16 May 2014 12:21:06 +0000

Changed in unity-mir (Ubuntu):
status: In Progress → Fix Released
Michał Sawicz (saviq) on 2014-05-16
Changed in unity8:
status: In Progress → Fix Released
Changed in unity-mir:
status: In Progress → Fix Committed
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

This bug was fixed in the package unity8 - 7.86+14.10.20140516.2-0ubuntu1

unity8 (7.86+14.10.20140516.2-0ubuntu1) utopic; urgency=low

  [ CI bot ]
  * Resync trunk

  [ Michael Zanetti ]
  * support appid:// entries in gsettings schema and make
    findDesktopFile work with short-appid (LP: #1239750)
 -- Ubuntu daily release <email address hidden> Fri, 16 May 2014 12:32:40 +0000

Changed in unity8 (Ubuntu):
status: In Progress → Fix Released
Leo Arias (elopio) on 2014-07-30
tags: added: qa-daily-testing rtm14
Leo Arias (elopio) wrote :

Alecu, does it still need to be fixed on the scope?

Alejandro J. Cura (alecu) wrote :

Leo: just tested by installing #154, and pinning Sudoku. After updating it, it still launches fine, so I think there's no need to fix this in the scope. Thanks for pointing this out!

Changed in unity-scope-click (Ubuntu):
status: Triaged → Invalid
Ted Gould (ted) on 2014-09-04
Changed in url-dispatcher:
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
Michał Sawicz (saviq) on 2017-03-13
Changed in unity8 (Ubuntu):
assignee: nobody → Michael Zanetti (mzanetti)
importance: Undecided → High
no longer affects: unity8
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