Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 15th Dec 2008 15:10 UTC
Editorial InternetNews.com 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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Never Happen
by BluenoseJake on Mon 15th Dec 2008 17:26 UTC
BluenoseJake
Member since:
2005-08-11

Proprietary software companies are not going to allow MS to distribute their software, it's that simple. Adobe isn't going to allow MS to provide Photoshop, or any other app. It makes no sense. It gives MS too much control.

And as far as a 3rd party building a package manager, good luck getting the 1000s of Windows App developers to sign on. it's just not doable, not with proprietary software. There are just too many cooks in the kitchen.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Never Happen
by ichi on Mon 15th Dec 2008 18:20 in reply to "Never Happen"
ichi Member since:
2007-03-06

MS doesn't have to distribute anything, the point is having a package manager as a centralized tool to install and update software, not necessarily from repositories. There's no need to download photoshop if you already have the CDs.

Portage, gentoo's package manager, is able to install loads of propietary products and as far as I know no one has signed on anything.

And anyway, even if they were going for a repository based package manager they could set it up so MS didn't have to distribute anything, giving users the ability to add third party repositories (adobe, sun, blizzard...).

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Never Happen
by BluenoseJake on Mon 15th Dec 2008 21:10 in reply to "RE: Never Happen"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

They aren't going to trust a third party anymore either. And adding repositories to a package manager is no easier than going to a website and clicking on the download button, or putting in that photoshop CD and clicking install.

There has to be some benefit to do something like this, and there isn't any, for anyone. Commercial software developers aren't going to sign on, it doesn't make life any easier for consumers, so what is the point?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Never Happen
by Doc Pain on Mon 15th Dec 2008 18:25 in reply to "Never Happen"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

Proprietary software companies are not going to allow MS to distribute their software, it's that simple. Adobe isn't going to allow MS to provide Photoshop, or any other app. It makes no sense. It gives MS too much control.


I think you're right - this is the providers' point of view.

Furthermore, the average "Windows" user is not familiar with having a kind of centralized software installation tool (allthough the "Add/Remove" facility in the "Control Panel" is helpful where the provided installers / deinstallers don't work correctly). Instead, the user is familiar with the concept of downloading applications directly from the web (primarily through means of search engines and linked pages that seem to offer what they're searching for). When the user searches a certain piece of software, he opens "Internet Explorer" and starts searching. It is that simple. Or they go to the local shop, buy a shiny colorful package and install the software from the DVD in the box.

And here the circle closes: It's completely illogical to assume all those providers of software - and I'm not mentioning only the big ones that make money with their products, keep considering that there's lots of freeware around the web for "Windows" - are willing to put their software into a MICROS~1 controlled software archive.

And as far as a 3rd party building a package manager, good luck getting the 1000s of Windows App developers to sign on. it's just not doable, not with proprietary software. There are just too many cooks in the kitchen.


Good summary. The only means I could imagine how MICROS~1 could force developers to put their software into a centralized kind of repository would be to disallow any software to run when it's not "certified" to have come from this repository. But I think that's impossible, too, because some clever guys will find a way to sneak behind this concept and to disable it, so you can run any software on "Windows" (mind all those warez, keygens, cracked products 'n stuff?). This is how software on "Windows" usually works, and its users seem to be completely happy with this concept.

My final thought, still, a kind of working (!) and almost complete (!) package managing system could be an advantage for "Windows". Just imagine it could be to install a certain set of applications from packages provided on a media, run in batch mode (so nobody needs to be there and click "Next" every five seconds). But this package managing system would also need to keep an eye on the many different versions of "Windows" that are already around (and surely will be), because not every software for "Windows" would run on every version of "Windows"...

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Never Happen
by lemur2 on Mon 15th Dec 2008 22:52 in reply to "Never Happen"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Proprietary software companies are not going to allow MS to distribute their software, it's that simple. Adobe isn't going to allow MS to provide Photoshop, or any other app. It makes no sense. It gives MS too much control.


Sigh!

You don't need to have Microsoft distribute the software of other companies.

Just have a standard application package format, and have an OS component (similar to gdebi) that can install such packages.

Doesn't the .msi format achieve this already?

Reply Parent Score: 3