Heavy users of Flatpak apps will appreciate Flatseal, a new GTK app that makes managing Flatpak permissions a lot easier.

As a sandboxed app format, Flatpak apps have to request individual permission to access different parts of your system or your configured hardware. e.g., permission to access the network, permission to show notifications, permission to read files in you ~/Downloads folder.

As of GNOME 3.32 it’s possible to manage Flatpak app permissions on a per-app basis using the “Applications” section in System Settings.

Flatseal offers very similar features to those natively available, but within a slightly more efficient overview:

“Flatseal is a graphical utility to review and modify basic permissions from your Flatpak applications,” reads the Flathub store listing.

More than that, Flatseal is a “power user” utility aimed at people who make heavy use of Flatpak apps. As such, it doesn’t need to offer simply worded explanations of each permission, or divide things into bite-sized sections.

This is a tool for people who know what permissions are and why they may want to adjust or manage them.

Rather neatly, the app also includes a “reset” button to restore permissions to their default values. This is handy if you make a change you didn’t mean to, or run in to issues after making a change.

Anyone with a handful of apps installed will likely find the existing “System Settings” section an adequate outlet for managing Flatpak permissions. But those who want greater control (and greater responsibility) Flatseal sticks out as a tool with using.

Install Flatseal

Flatseal is free open source software available to download from GitHub. It’s also available to install from Flathub, the Flatpak app store.

Flatseal on Flathub

While there’s no “over arching” tool like this for Snap applications (at least, not that i know of as of writing) it’s already pretty easy to manage permissions for Snap apps via the Ubuntu Software app.

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