Linked by Tom5 on Tue 24th May 2011 21:13 UTC
Linux Zero Install, the decentralised cross-distribution software installation system, announced 0install 1.0 today, after 8 years in development. 0install allows software developers to publish programs directly from their own web-sites, while supporting features familiar from centralised distribution repositories such as shared libraries, automatic updates and digital signatures. It complements, rather than replaces, the OS's package management. As well as allowing developers to create a single package that works across Linux, BSDs, Mac OS X and Windows, it could help make software available on more minor platforms. OSNews covered decentralised installation systems in 2007.
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by Tom5 on Wed 25th May 2011 09:41 UTC in reply to "Nobody seems to care"
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Agreed. One of the great things I remember from when I first started releasing software for Linux (about 1998): people would get it direct from my web site, compile it and run it. If there was a bug, they'd write to me, I'd fix it, and often they'd have a working version the same day.

But when they get my software from their distribution, the bug reports I get are 6 months out of date. The problem is often already fixed, but it will be another 6 months before they can get the working version.

That really kills any chance of rapid improvement and feedback through community involvement, which should be what free software does best.

PPAs are OK if you've got an army of packagers to backport every release to every distribution, but most software isn't popular enough for that. I wonder why more developers don't give 0install a try?

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