Cannot update Atom in Ubuntu

Atom informs me there is an update. After downloading and clicking ‘update’ there is an error:

Update failed
Something went wrong while attempting to update atom
Hide Stack Trace
Error: Command failed: SHELL=/bin/bash pkexec dpkg -i /tmp/atom-updater-linux.installer
pkexec must be setuid root

Atom version: 1.47.0
System: Ubuntu 16.04

I found information I shouldn’t update it via sudo atom in terminal. This error seemed slightly similar, but running sudo chmod 4755 /usr/share/atom/chrome-sandbox didn’t help. If anybody got a clue how to proceed, I’d be grateful.

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I am on Ubuntu 18.04 and I simply go to and download the latest *.deb file, double click on it in system tray which shows downloads (or go to ~/Downloads) and install/upgrade. I would not use sudo for security reasons. The upgrade is in ~/.atom. I am today on Atom 1.48.

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Thanks for answer! After double-clicking the file Ubuntu Software opens. It doesn’t show install/ugrade and with my experience Ubuntu Software app works unexpectedly so at the moment I am afraid to run it because it may create a new installation of Atom, overwrite some files, and … make a lot of trouble to solve it. If there is no other option, I will wait when I am sure I can spend more time on eventual “unbugging”.

You can try installing the downloaded *.deb using Gdebi installer. Open Gdebi GUI and navigate to ~/Downloads to look for the Atom deb file. An upgrade should not affect your project files since only ~/.atom is changed (and I hope you do not keep your project files in there!). Keep your project files away from your ~/.atom installation.

This is what I see when I just double click on the file in ~/Downloads …

[P.S] You are on an ancient 16.04 (not now supported) and I suggest that you install 18.04 (do not upgrade from 16.04 since you will get into a mess).

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Thanks! I upgraded without a problem.

see added note on use of 16.04.

Yes, thanks. I will have to do it. I suppose I will consider 20.04 not to change systems to often.