Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 28th May 2009 14:23 UTC, submitted by hotice
KDE While most people focus on Microsoft Office and OpenOffice.org as being each other's competitors, there's a third player in this market: KOffice. While KOffice is obviously geared towards use on KDE, it's available for Windows, Mac OS X, and GNOME-based distributions as well, making it much more platform-independent than Microsoft's Office suite. Version 2.0.0 was released today, and comes with a whole boatload of improvements.
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bornagainenguin
Member since:
2005-08-07

I wanted to give the Windows version a spin and followed the link given only to discover the site linked to doesn't even have Win32 listed as an option under its binaries section. Most people would have stopped right then and there, but I went hunting and eventually found and tried the kdewin-installer-gui...

What a joke! Look I understand that package-managers make it much easier for developers to manage code, push out updates, etc--but trying to bolt on a package-manager for Windows is just broken behavior for that platform plain and simple. I shouldn't have to sit there and try to figure out what libraries I may or may not need and whether or not the application I want is in packages A) B) or C).

I should be able to click through to download an installer and install my application. Furthermore I should be able to get everything in a lump download if that's what I want, not this retarded grab this tiny download-manager and download the application from the internet every time I want to install it! Being able to install software offline is one of the biggest advantages of Windows and it bothers me to lose it because the application developer wants to force platform inappropriate choices on the user.

As it was, I watched the installer download a bunch of random packages from the internet for awhile and then canceled the thing. I'll stick with OpenOffice.org--at least I know I can just stick it on a flashdrive for whenever I need it.

--bornagainpenguin

Edited 2009-05-30 16:39 UTC

Reply Score: 2

WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

What a joke! Look I understand that package-managers make it much easier for developers to manage code, push out updates, etc--but trying to bolt on a package-manager for Windows is just broken behavior for that platform plain and simple. I shouldn't have to sit there and try to figure out what libraries I may or may not need and whether or not the application I want is in packages A) B) or C).

A package-manager is not "just broken behaviour" for Windows at all. It'd be equally awesome as it is in Linux IF it was as well supported, or if someone made an equally good package-manager as there are for Linux. The ones I've seen are more or less half-assed attempts at throwing together something that might or might not work.

I should be able to click through to download an installer and install my application. Furthermore I should be able to get everything in a lump download if that's what I want, not this retarded grab this tiny download-manager and download the application from the internet every time I want to install it! Being able to install software offline is one of the biggest advantages of Windows and it bothers me to lose it because the application developer wants to force platform inappropriate choices on the user.

It is possible to install apps for Linux without internet connection. You just might need to download a few packages instead of just one. It is still very much possible as usually the websites also provide links to any dependencies you might need. Still, it'd be nice if you had one single package, just for arguments sake let's call it SuperRPM, that you'd download from the net and would just double-click and install it. The file itself would just hold the regular RPM-file and its dependies, so the system would only install those dependencies from there if needed. Hell, a single .zip file renamed to .superrpm with files "MyApp.rpm", "Dependency1.rpm" and "Dependency2.rpm" would suffice for that and still make installation A LOT easier than it currently is.

Reply Parent Score: 2

bornagainenguin Member since:
2005-08-07

WereCatf posted...

It is possible to install apps for Linux without internet connection. You just might need to download a few packages instead of just one. It is still very much possible as usually the websites also provide links to any dependencies you might need.


I'm not talking about Linux here, I'm talking about Windows, where the default method for handling application installation (like it or hate it) is via individual application installers, which install the application plus all related dependencies as one package. The Linux way works well on Linux and should not change, the Windows way works...well..ahem... on that system and I think applications should conform to the standards of the OS they are installed in.

--bornagainpenguin

Reply Parent Score: 2

smitty Member since:
2005-10-13

The idea behind the package manager is that no one wants to download all of Qt and kdelibs 50 times to install 50 apps, or to make a simple IM installer be 100MB+ to include all the dependencies.

However, it is annoying if you're just trying to grab a single app. I think eventually certain apps like KOffice and Amarok will provide stand alone installers, but I don't know when that will happen. I don't think Windows development is a priority, really, they're trying to attract more developers who can make it integrate better while the existing ones are mostly focusing on Linux still.

Reply Parent Score: 3

boudewijn Member since:
2006-03-05

I know that both the kde-windows as well as the kde-mac people are investigating things like CPack to make standalone installers for those platforms of KDE software. But it is a hard problem that isn't solved yet. In fact, I don't think KOffice 2.0 has been packaged for Windows at all, although I have seen Patrick Spendrin make commits towards that goal.

But the kind of conceited hyperbole bornagainpenguin spews does a great injustice to the really great and hard work the kde-windows people have done. There are very few of them and they are doing great and pioneering work. Is the result perfect already? No. Can bornagainpenguin do any better? Unless he proves it, I'll assume he is incapable of doing that. Just as he is incapable of reading the KOffice 2.0 release announcement and understanding the target audience of this platform release.

And anyone who has ever had to package Windows software using an installer, whether bitrock, nsis or msi, knows that that is not an easy thing. Completely apart from the crt-problem, there are so many vagaries associated with making an installer that for larger software projects it's a full-time effort in itself.

Reply Parent Score: 4

bornagainenguin Member since:
2005-08-07

smitty posted...

The idea behind the package manager is that no one wants to download all of Qt and kdelibs 50 times to install 50 apps, or to make a simple IM installer be 100MB+ to include all the dependencies.


I have less issues with the requirement for libraries and more of one with the bolting on of a package-manager on a system that doesn't use it. I understand the applications will have library requirements, but since this is KOffice we're talking about here, shouldn't it be much easier to just install the suite of applications KOffice comes with and all dependencies from a single installer? One that I can download all at once in a zip file?

smitty posted...
I don't think Windows development is a priority, really, they're trying to attract more developers who can make it integrate better while the existing ones are mostly focusing on Linux still.


It never seems to be, does it? Yet I first used Firefox, OpenOffice.org, Frozen Bubbles, ZSNES, VLC, etc etc on Windows, not Linux. Then when I did move to Linux for most of my daily stuff I was pleased to have those applications there for me, that I'd already become accustomed to using on Windows.

--bornagainpenguin

PS: Sorry for the time between posts--I was scheduled to go see Star Trek again and I wasn't about to miss it for anything.

Reply Parent Score: 2

moltonel Member since:
2006-02-24

Look I understand that package-managers make it much easier for developers to manage code, push out updates, etc--but trying to bolt on a package-manager for Windows is just broken behavior for that platform plain and simple.


Funny, last time I installed MSOffice (granted, a long time ago), it looked very much like a package manager : a big tree of features to install, insatll-on-request, or exclude. The only thing it lacked to be a proper package manager is handling of updates.

I've also seen the "installer which downloads the program" concept more than once in the Windows world, done by Microsoft, Adobe, and probably others.

I shouldn't have to sit there and try to figure out what libraries I may or may not need and whether or not the application I want is in packages A) B) or C).


Good ! That's what a package manager is designed to save you from.

Furthermore I should be able to get everything in a lump download if that's what I want


It sounds tempting... But you seem to underestimate the amount of dependencies that need to be downloaded. What would you say if a program packaged dotnet, DirectX, and half a dozen minor libraries in its one-file installer ? And again for every further release, even though the versions of bundled libraries don't change ? And make a whole new release when that small lib is found to have a security flaw ? And include that big package (say Kexi/Access) which you never use ? This is what you're asking for when you ask for one big zipfile.

Package managers are a Good thing. On Windows, most decent non-trivial programs end up (re)implementing one in one form or another, if only to manage updates. It's a mess, but better than the alternative. On Linux, the package manager is included with the OS. It's a pain that it's a different one for every distribution, but at least it's only one per distribution.

Being able to install software offline is one of the biggest advantages of Windows and it bothers me to lose it because the application developer wants to force platform inappropriate choices on the user.


I expect the installer allows you to install from allready-downloaded packages, no ? If not, it's certainly a valid feature request to send.

As it was, I watched the installer download a bunch of random packages from the internet for awhile and then canceled the thing.


Then you really didn't give the system any chance. Especially considering Koffice 2.0 is not targeted at general users, and KDE-on-Windows is a young, amazing-it-works-at-all project.

Reply Parent Score: 1