flatpak-builder has already been introduced in Building your first Flatpak
and Building Introduction. This page provides additional detail on
how to use
flatpak-builder, including the various command options that
flatpak-builder provides two options for exporting an application in
order to run it. The first is to export to a repository, from which the
application can be run. The second is to automatically install locally.
Exporting to a repository
--repo option allows a repository to be specified, for the application
to be exported to. This takes the format:
$ flatpak-builder --repo=<repo> <build-dir> <manifest>
<repo> is a path to a repository. If no repository exists at the
specified location, the repository will be created. If the application is
already in the specified repository,
flatpak-builder will add the build
as a new version of the existing application.
You can put more than one application in the same repository by using the same
--repo path for multiple invocations of
flatpak-builder splits off translations and debug information
into separate .Locale and .Debug extensions. These extensions are
automatically exported into a repository along with the application.
Installing builds directly
Instead of exporting to a repository, the Flatpak that is produced by
flatpak-builder can be automatically installed locally, using the
$ flatpak-builder --install <build-dir> <manifest>
This approach has the advantage of skipping the separate install step that is needed when exporting to a repository.
Every commit to a Flatpak repository should be signed with a GPG signature. If
flatpak-builder is being used to modify or create a repository, a GPG key
should therefore be passed to it. This can be done with the
option, such as:
$ flatpak-builder --gpg-sign=<key> --repo=<repository> <manifest>
<key> is the ID of the GPG key that is to be used. The
--gpg-homedir option can also be used to specify the home directory of
the key that is being used.
Though it generally isn’t recommended, it is possible not to use GPG
verification. In this case, the
--no-gpg-verify option should be used
when adding the repository. Note that it is necessary to become root in
order to update a repository that does not have GPG verification enabled.