THE OPERA browser has become the latest Ubuntu Snap, allowing Linux users to run virtualised Windows apps in a completely separate process.
Although made and operated by Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu Linux, Snaps are available to an increasing range of Linux distros, offering amongst others, Slack and Skype in the exact form that Window users are getting them, with all updates and security glitches handled remotely.
Compatible distros include Debian, Fedora, Mint, Manjaro, Elementary, and OpenSUSE, as well as Ubuntu.
Opera, which announced a $115m IPO last week, offers a number of features that are unique amongst Chromium-based browsers including a built-in VPN and adblocker. It used to offer a separate VPN for general use, but that has now been shuttered.
The Scandinavian company was bought by a Chinese consortium, which has now taken the whole outfit public.
"We are happy to say that the installation of our browser on Linux just got easier than ever before," said Krystian Kolondra, Opera EVP Browsers.
"We are delighted to welcome Opera to the Snap Store and further expand the choice of applications available to the Linux community. It is popular applications, such as Opera, that have driven the impressive growth of new snaps to the store and ever-increasing user installs over the last year," added Jamie Bennett, VP of Engineering, IoT and Devices at Canonical.
Although we can't report every single new Snap - there have been thousands in the last two year - it's always worth reporting any new ones from major apps, as they are a reflection of the continuing easing of the ways for Linux users who are at last able to access apps that were, at best, badly maintained in Linux or at worst, didn't exist.
The most recent new arrival with Microsoft Powershell which was introduced for Linux last week. μ
A surprisingly busy week in a quiet month
Measures just 15.75mm at its thickest point
Firm expects GPU sales to start drying up