Gnome system information: the good, the bad or the gnome?

Looks like the gnome team developed a new telemetry package to collect infos and help improving the DE. This is not installed by default, but can be installed and sends anonymous information about your system, that you can also inspect before sending. For example, which extensions are enabled (see table on link below). Could be that common extensions like dash to dock make a comeback into user settings…?

A nice chat about this on Linux Unplugged.

I hear users missing functionality and deal with extensions on gnome. The major problem being that some of these break with major upgrades, which isn’t a good thing on bleeding edge distros based on arch.

Question, would you install this to help shape the future of gnome? Or no way, milky way…?

If it is not installed by default and you can inspect before sending, I don’t see a problem.
I would install it, inspect it and depending on the data, I would send it in order to help the developers.

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think it useful . you install if want to help

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Just to note, in case in wasn’t clear this gnome-info-collect is not an app per se, but a terminal command you need to run only once, then it generates an output which you can then verify if you want to send that data to Gnome or not, and then after that you are meant to uninstall the collection tool. It’s not meant to stay on your system, since it’s only meant to serve one single function.

With the Linux community in general being more privacy focused and also not the biggest fans of telemetry, I was hesitant to try this myself. But overall those in the Gnome community were supportive of the tool and the data being collected is made transparent enough for me at least. Nothing personal is sent, so I really didn’t mind giving the tool a go.

Quite honestly if I didn’t trust Gnome, why would I even be using their software then? Some users will never install something like this and that’s fine too as it is opt-in, but for myself I went ahead and installed it, ran it, and then uninstalled it.

If you’re on the fence about using it, I mean it’s in the Official Arch repos so that should count for something. Firefox and Ubuntu also use some form of telemetry data and I’m sure there’s countless other software that does as well, so if you’re fine with that, then this may be of interest to you.

I would encourage anyone that wants to help out the devs to at least consider it, but if you’re at all uncomfortable with any of this of course I wouldn’t recommend it. Only ever do what’s comfortable for you and no one can really tell you that, but yourself.

Joey of OmgUbuntu also did a nice little article of this tool over on his other site OmgLinux, which I do recommend reading if you enjoy his writing style here:

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That’s a very good point. First setup gnome to your liking then run it! If you have several computer, you have more voices, install gnome on all of them with dash to dock :grin:

Edit: let me correct in the title section…

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Telemetry? - Umpf.

Run once, view data, then uninstall. Seems pretty harmless.

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Thanks for the info @Scotty_Trees, i personally won’t be using this. But you did clear up questions i had when i saw it on a YouTube video a few days ago. Thanks! :+1:t3:

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I’m quite enjoying gnome. I haven’t enabled it and probably won’t.

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It’s always in the back of my mind…this is how it always starts off. A simple request to opt into telemetry sending anonymized data. Where does it end?

I still want Gnome to be more awesome, so Scotty seems to have a balanced approach to a prickly subject.

I will do the same as you @Scotty_Trees.

We should be more concerned when desktop devs they try to install those tools by stealth and leave them phoning home without our knowledge. Since is not what this is about, I am ok with installing, sending and then uninstalling.

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Weren’t you “all hyped-up” (missing a better phrase here) about new developments in Gnome, recently? Or have you changed your mind? Or have I misunderstood you (or maybe my memory is messed up, due to an unstoppable ageing, we all undergo)?

:yum: :grey_question:

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telemetry is persake not bad depend how it is organized.

  1. People must be aware
  2. standard it must be off.
  3. if you decide to puton must be unanoymous

but on somepoint developers gona push forward and makes it standard on :slight_smile:

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Oh yessss, I am very upbeat (hyped-up) about Gnome and the upcoming Gnome 43, and if this anonymous data helps them build a better Gnome, then I am onboard with that.

Did you see the data they want to collect? I reinstalled it so I could paste the data here, but they only let you send it once. It’s just hardware make, browser, and a list of extensions I am using, so that’s what we paste in here all the time.

I do accept you have higher privacy expectations than me, so at the end of the day, it’s your call. I want a better Gnome and this my way of contributing to it :grin:

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And the day that happens, it will be au revoir, adios, auf wiedersehen, etc, etc, to whoever the developers are :woozy_face:

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That’s a good point, you want a change, contribute to it!

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I even joined their dev channel, just to see what they are working on.

This is NOT collecting telemetry data.

Telemetry is defined as the automatic process of the data created by your systems being remotely collected through the use of agents and protocols. Telemetry data extends to and includes all logs, metrics, events and traces that are created by your applications.

Taken from https://logit.io/blog/post/what-is-telemetry-data/

gnome-info-collect is NOT collecting telemetry data. gnome-info-collect is capturing static data about your system like programs installed, default applications, flatpak status, etc.

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I take from Wikipedia (not always the best source of infos but at least they have a reference…):

Telemetry is the in situ collection of measurements or other data at remote points and their automatic transmission to receiving equipment (telecommunication) for monitoring.[1] The word is derived from the Greek roots tele, “remote”, and metron, “measure”.

I did not say collect telemetry data, but collect information via telemetry. Not sure if installing the package and sending the info once qualifies as such, especially it is a one time thing.

For me it’s tomaeto vs. tomato. But I am not a computer scientist. So what word would you use instead that is more accurate?

Definiitions always depend on, who’s defining them! Usually there are some kind of general principles of interest, or agendas involved, meant to pertain to a group that is being adressed.

I follow the Greek definitions :grin: