Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 18th Sep 2009 18:34 UTC
Mac OS X There are several things which take quite some getting used to when switching from any platform to the Mac. There are things like the universal menubar, the dock, Expose, and many more. One of the things that often leads to confusion for new users is the installation process for applications. Mozilla developer Alexander Limi talks about the problems Mozilla runs into when it comes to Firefox' installation process on the Mac, and a possible solution. Update: A possible solution?
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Zip are not a solution
by _xmv on Mon 21st Sep 2009 11:35 UTC
_xmv
Member since:
2008-12-09

The whole point of using disk images is to be portable. Zip is not portable over MacOSX because it still uses things like resource forks, and extended attributes that are only stored on a disk image.

There's no good solution i can think of, beside a centralized installer (like appstore, or more commonly on computers, apt-get, etc).

The other "bad" solutions involve eg:

a) mounting the disk image, and proposing to copy the app automatically with a disable button (like, when u insert a blank cd or a camera you know ?) then cleaning up the whole disk image

b) invent a whole new archive format, like zip, or reuse stuffit, that can store all attributes and resources

c) invent a new application binary format or loader, basically, a kind of self-contained archive (like self extracting zip) but that look like the app. so you basically download "firefox.app" which is a solid "zip-like" file, and you put it anywhere you like. at first run it self-unpack on place.

c-bis) same thing without self-unpack, just a unified compressed binary format representing the current.app format (running as compressed which is a bit what snow leopard does, but without the unified format that allow keeping resources/attributes on any filesystem)

d) of course, the installer, at least everyone understands it

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