Installing Chirp in Ubuntu 20.04

If you have been using the PPA to get the Chirp dailies, you will quickly find out that this no longer works in Ubuntu 20.04 Focal.

Python 2 is getting phased out and whatever is running the GUI for Chirp has been phased out completely. This makes getting Chirp to run a little more difficult than before.

UPDATE: It looks like major progress has been made with the Python 3 upgrade and Chirp is available in Groovy (20.10)! This article will likely be outdated soon. 

As of this writing, there are a few options:

  1. Wait until the python 3 version of Chirp is finished (NOT!)
  2. Install via the Snap: This gives a warning against doing so
  3. Install via flatpak: WINNAR!

A Flatpak is a self contained package that includes all necessary libraries. Similar to a Snap, but this uses a package directly from the author. I like the flatpak option because I don’t need to manually install a bunch of deprecated libs or add some PPA that wasn’t even meant for Ubuntu.

Note from user: If you already have Chirp installed, you will need to remove it first. See comments section for details.

First thing you need to do is download the latest .flatpak file from here:

https://trac.chirp.danplanet.com/chirp_daily/LATEST/

Rest of the work is from the terminal.

First, install Flatpak:

$ sudo apt install flatpak

The other howtos seem to have missed this next step. You need to use flatpak to install the “freedesktop” platform. First update flatpak and your paths.

$ flatpak update -v

This will give you a warning about paths, something like:

Note that the directories

'/var/lib/flatpak/exports/share'
'/home/[username]/.local/share/flatpak/exports/share'

are not in the search path set by the XDG_DATA_DIRS environment variable, so applications installed by Flatpak may not appear on your desktop until the session is restarted.

Since we now have to log out anyway, now might be a good time to make sure you are in the dialout group.

Use  the groups command to list your active groups. If the group “dialout” does not appear, add yourself to the group (replace [username] with your username):

$ sudo usermod -aG dialout [username]

Now restart your session (or computer) and return to the terminal.

~$ flatpak update -v
Looking for updates…
Nothing to do.

Don’t worry about installation directory warnings if you haven’t installed anything yet. Those will be created later. Important is that we got rid of the path warning. Moving on….

Now you need to get the Freedesktop repository installed:

$ flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub https://flathub.org/repo/flathub.flatpakrepo

and then install the Freedesktop Platform:

$ flatpak install flathub org.freedesktop.Platform//19.08

This might take a while its a big (~0.5Gb) download. Grab some coffee and make some QSO’s….. Maybe check out my club’s website: http://w6ek.org

Finally we can install Chirp!  (replace .flatpack filename with your downloaded version)

$ flatpak install Downloads/chirp-daily-20201014.flatpak

You’re done! You can run chirp from your applications menu or from the command like like this:

$ flatpak run com.danplanet.chirp

Remember, this is only a temporary solution until the Python 3 conversion of Chirp has been completely rolled out. However, in the interim if you want to easily update the flatpak, or automate it with a cron job, here is a script that works for me:


#!/bin/bash
#
#
# This script updats chirp flatpak to latest daily build
# Add this to root's crontab for automatic updates
# If run as standard user, you will get a popop asking for admin password
#
#
#Make download folder if doesn't exist
mkdir -p ~/Downloads/ChirpFP
#Move to Download folder
cd ~/Downloads/ChirpFP
#Remove previously downloaded flatpaks
rm *.flatpak
#Pull link from download page and download latest flatpak
wget `lynx -dump https://trac.chirp.danplanet.com/chirp_daily/LATEST/ | awk '/http/{print $2}' | grep flatpak`
#Install the file
flatpak install -y --noninteractive *.flatpak

If you found this article helpful, please support me by subscribing to my YouTube channel! https://youtube.com/piratesinteepees

73 – KK6VHH

6 thoughts on “Installing Chirp in Ubuntu 20.04”

  1. I found this post while trying to find a solution for using Chirp on Linux Mint 20. Not only did it work perfectly, It also took care of my other issue, the ability to update my Midland DBR2500 radios! Thanks for the information in your post!

  2. I somehow screwed up my usermod command so that the only group I’m in is dialout! Which means I am no longer is the superdoers group and cannot sudo!!! Now what?

  3. This page saved me a lot of trouble as I was trying to figure out why I was not receiving the updates to Chirp from my sources.list file in 20.04. The last step I had to do once installing flatpak and the latest chirp-daily was to purge the old chirp-daily installation from a month prior. The ‘sudo apt purge chirp-daily’ command took care of that, and now i have the latest chirp-daily in the apps menu. Fantastic.

    I do have one question. How does one receive the latest updates through flatpak from here on out? Do you have to download and install the new flatpak file when it comes out, or is there some kind of update command one can run? I’m assuming it’s the first option, but wanted to make sure.

    Fantastic post. I did subscribe to the YouTube channel just to say thanks.

    1. Hi Mike, thanks for the kind words and for subbing to my YT channel! So far it looks like downloading a new flatpak is the only way to update. If I can figure out a way to make it easier I will update the article. 73 – KK6VHH

Leave a Reply to Jayadeva Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

RoboPirates: DENIED! * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.