Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 15th Dec 2008 15:10 UTC
Editorial states: "Microsoft (or a really smart ISV) should build a full application manager for Windows, similar to what most Linux distributions do today." Most Windows applications come with their own distinctive updating mechanism (much like Mac OS X), instead of having a centralised updating location like most Linux distributions offer. While it certainly wouldn't be harmful for Windows to gain such a feature - the question remains: isn't it time we rethink program installation and management altogether?
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Ford Prefect
Member since:

I don't know what you are talking about.

Searching: pacman -Ss <keyword>
Installing: pacman -S <packet>
Upgrading: pacman -Syu
Removing: pacman -R <packet>

That's all I ever need. Sometimes I put a 'f' in there.

You moan about all these 1000 different ways. What you seem to forget is that every single user only needs his very one single way for his distro.

Talking about 1000 different ways, that's exactly the problem of Windows software installation and upgrading. Every piece of software you find somewhere else, you have to run through a semi-conherent installer program and in the end have a semi-coherent way of hopefully removing it again. And then you have to actively download new versions, etc. if it doesn't come with some sometimes-crappy self-update option.

No central system means that everybody is re-inventing the wheel, some with better success than others.

On the other hand, I don't see packet management like in Linux on a commercial platform soon. There is much more behind it than just a convenient way of keeping your software up-to-date. Think about the tight interplay of all these different libraries. In a commercial work there is no place for this, packet managers would never gain the control they really need to provide a high-quality software system.

Reply Parent Score: 18

spiderman Member since:

Or because there are SEVERAL communities.
Windows is just yet another system with yet another way of installing software. It has the very same problem as other distros.
"THE linux community" has nothing to do with this.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Soulbender Member since:

Each different Linux distro is like a completely different platform because of the community's inability to decide on anything.

Has the author (of this post) ever used Linux?
You dont need to care about every damn distro, only the top ones, which leaves you with basically RPM or .deb. Wow, two systems. The difference between the different distros that are using the same package system (rpm or deb) is so minor that usually it doesn't even matter.
Maybe this is a bit harder for the developer but here's a hint: as a consumer I dont give a damn. I care what makes things easier for ME. Cry me a river.

Reply Parent Score: 8

Jokel Member since:

Don't exaggerate will you?

There are in general three kind of files the program writers have to supply:

rpm - Redhat package manager files.
deb - Debian package files.
tgz - tarball file.

The rpm and deb files are only in essence the program files with a list of standard locations and dependencies that have to be resolved by the distro's package manager. Nothing more, nothing less. The program makers don't have to supply their program for all variations and tastes of distributions. The program writers only have to sum up what dependencies.

It's the task of the distribution makers to make sure the application runs on their specific ditribution. If the standard package won't run, those distro makers have to compile and package it themselves.

So - please stop spreading the stupid myth the program writers have to supply their program for all tastes of Linux distributions. This is simply not the case...


Reply Parent Score: 9

lemur2 Member since:

You moan about all these 1000 different ways. What you seem to forget is that every single user only needs his very one single way for his distro. You seem to forget that it's a pain to distribute an application for each possible way that each distro can manage packages. Windows doesn't have that problem. Each different Linux distro is like a completely different platform because of the community's inability to decide on anything.

For FOSS code this is not a problem. Each distribution will take your source code, compile it with options compatible with that distribution, package it and include it in their repositories. As the author you don't have to do anything at all ... others will help here.

For commercial closed-source code, you are fighting an uphill battle to get that application accepted on Linux anyway. People will nearly always choose an open source equivalent. But even then, if you really want to have a go at a closed-source single-supplier-only application for Linux, then if you follow the LSB API for interfacing to the desktop you then need only really compile your code once and package it in two ways ... as a .deb package and also as an .rpm package ... and you have most Linux system covered.

It is not that hard. Plenty of projects do this.

Reply Parent Score: 3

jabbotts Member since:

funny, the distribution maintainers seem to do ok managing additions. It's not like Mozilla has to provide a package for every distribution, just the tarball; the basic universal package. Each distribution then chooses to include it through there own manager.. or not.

But, I suspect we're already way over your head on this one.

Reply Parent Score: 4