Software Valet

I saw this on the mailing list recently. The question was should we recreate SoftwareValet/PackageBuilder? I think it would be a great idea. I could be considered your typical Haiku end user or close to it. I know some people hate installers and packages because they like to compile every program seperate in it’s own folder. however, I much prefer to just download a .pkg and have software handle it for me. It just feels more commercial that way I think. Plus there are also some other advantages to it. What are other people’s thoughts?

skyBurn7 wrote:
I saw this on the mailing list recently. The question was should we recreate SoftwareValet/PackageBuilder? I think it would be a great idea. I could be considered your typical Haiku end user or close to it. I know some people hate installers and packages because they like to compile every program seperate in it's own folder. however, I much prefer to just download a .pkg and have software handle it for me. It just feels more commercial that way I think. Plus there are also some other advantages to it. What are other people's thoughts?

I think we should at least support the installation from a .pkg file - there are many apps on bebits that come in this format.

I saw this message, too, this morning on the list, and I agree with you two.

Not sure how easy it would be to reverse engineer the format so that the original PKG files would be backwards-compatible with our version of SoftwareValet, but I would definitely like to see something along those lines for Haiku, sort of like the RPM is for Linux.

From the perspective of an end-user, I love downloading a program, unzipping it, and running the PKG and letting it do the grunt work. Much easier than manually editing this and that file (which are usually tucked away beneath the underbowels). :smiley:

j_freeman wrote:
Not sure how easy it would be to reverse engineer the format so that the original PKG files would be backwards-compatible with our version of SoftwareValet,

I don’t think it would be THAT hard. After all, we reverse engineered the BMessage and BPicture format. And even the printjob format (AFAIK).

j_freeman wrote:
From the perspective of an end-user, I *love* downloading a program, unzipping it, and running the PKG and letting it do the grunt work. Much easier than manually editing this and that file (which are usually tucked away beneath the underbowels). :D

I completely agree, and I do think, however, that all packages made for Haiku should be installed to a self-contained location. It would probably be best that way. I forgot if a lot of the packages for BeOS are already like that because I haven’t had a machine capable of running BeOS for many years.

I posted the original message on the mailing list about this, and have since had some private email discussions with Michael Phipps about it.

His perspective is that Windows installers and the package handling seen on Linux suck (which is pretty much true) and that the ideal in Haiku would be simple "package-less" installation. This more or less means that applications are entirely self-contained and installation would be a simple unzip (the Haiku web browser could be made smart to make this a one-click operation.) Anything more complicated (like a game with levels, sound files, etc) could be contained in special zip files which the system can transparently use.

In addition each application would be embedded with a BeBits-like categories which could be used to automatically populate the Deskbar application list.

Still we will probably provide basic backwards compatibility with the pkg format. I have begun to look at the format and reverse engineer it, and I’ve made good progress. But for the time being I’m going to focus on the DriveSetup replacement, which is a priority.

leavengood wrote:
I posted the original message on the mailing list about this, and have since had some private email discussions with Michael Phipps about it.

His perspective is that Windows installers and the package handling seen on Linux suck (which is pretty much true) and that the ideal in Haiku would be simple "package-less" installation. This more or less means that applications are entirely self-contained and installation would be a simple unzip (the Haiku web browser could be made smart to make this a one-click operation.) Anything more complicated (like a game with levels, sound files, etc) could be contained in special zip files which the system can transparently use.

In addition each application would be embedded with a BeBits-like categories which could be used to automatically populate the Deskbar application list.

Still we will probably provide basic backwards compatibility with the pkg format. I have begun to look at the format and reverse engineer it, and I’ve made good progress. But for the time being I’m going to focus on the DriveSetup replacement, which is a priority.

I agree that the DriveSetup is priority :smiley: - someone can always use an R5 system to dismantle a .pkg and do something with it if they need to.

I acutally think people began discussing the direction packages and applications should take (structurally) in Haiku in this post. "For those of you who are just joining us — previously on The Package Manager Story . . . .

http://haiku-os.org/forums/viewtopic.php?p=4776

Although, the discussion was similar: 1. self-contained applications 2. simple installer packages (like in mac os x) for more complex applications

I can say I won’t use Haiku without PKG installer and builder.
Read this http://bs0.blogspot.com/2006/03/mail.html

So for further tech info about SV you can bother that guy from StarCode.

bs0 wrote:
I can say I won't use Haiku without PKG installer and builder. Read this http://bs0.blogspot.com/2006/03/mail.html

So for further tech info about SV you can bother that guy from StarCode.

I found that blog posting in my research. If I run into serious problems reverse engineering the format I’ll try to email that guy. Please PM me his address.