Universal Package Manager System for Linux? - Linux

This is a discussion on Universal Package Manager System for Linux? - Linux ; In comp.os.linux.development.apps tsaar2003@yahoo.com wrote: > I don't any reason why Linux > distros could not be much simpler to manage than Windows. For a particular distribution, it is usually just a case of ticking a box against the package that ...

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  1. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.apps tsaar2003@yahoo.com wrote:

    > I don't any reason why Linux
    > distros could not be much simpler to manage than Windows.


    For a particular distribution, it is usually just a case of ticking a
    box against the package that you require from a list.

    You can often associate the package with the installer program to get
    the click to install effect.

    > At least
    > Linux community has this possibility, all it requires will and some
    > kind of consensus between distros.


    Not all distributions supply packages in source form, and binaries are
    currently tied against the libraries that they are compiled against. I
    am not sure of the practicalities of having binaries run against any
    version of a library.

    Although Microsoft Windows has a click to install type interface, remember it
    is only works for programs that are designed for the version that you are
    running. Not all programs will run on Microsoft Windows '95 for example,
    and some programs require the .NET framework, Direct X version 10, or a
    particular version of Microsoft Internet Exploder. Some newer programs
    will only run on Microsoft Windows Vista, and the upgrade is not free,
    and new hardware may be needed to run it, because Microsoft keep
    changing the hardware requirements.

    The days of consistent "IBM compatiblility" are gone. Many binaries are
    built for newer processors, and will not run on existing computers.

    Some distributions are moving towards offering different kernels, such
    as a BSD based kernel. This may need consideration.

    A build from source is a good solution to many of these problems, but
    not all distributions do on the fly compilation, and for those that do,
    people complain that they are too slow.

    I think the best you can do at this time, is choose a distribution that
    works for you, and comes with the packages that you want to use.

    I am not against the idea of a Universal Package Management System, but
    we are not there yet. I often want to split packages, and use customized
    versions of a particular component. I find this is not easy with
    existing package management systems, so I sometimes end up bypassing the
    package management systems altogether.

    Mark.

    --
    Mark Hobley,
    393 Quinton Road West,
    Quinton, BIRMINGHAM.
    B32 1QE.

  2. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.apps tsaar2003@yahoo.com wrote:

    > I don't any reason why Linux
    > distros could not be much simpler to manage than Windows.


    For a particular distribution, it is usually just a case of ticking a
    box against the package that you require from a list.

    You can often associate the package with the installer program to get
    the click to install effect.

    > At least
    > Linux community has this possibility, all it requires will and some
    > kind of consensus between distros.


    Not all distributions supply packages in source form, and binaries are
    currently tied against the libraries that they are compiled against. I
    am not sure of the practicalities of having binaries run against any
    version of a library.

    Although Microsoft Windows has a click to install type interface, remember it
    is only works for programs that are designed for the version that you are
    running. Not all programs will run on Microsoft Windows '95 for example,
    and some programs require the .NET framework, Direct X version 10, or a
    particular version of Microsoft Internet Exploder. Some newer programs
    will only run on Microsoft Windows Vista, and the upgrade is not free,
    and new hardware may be needed to run it, because Microsoft keep
    changing the hardware requirements.

    The days of consistent "IBM compatiblility" are gone. Many binaries are
    built for newer processors, and will not run on existing computers.

    Some distributions are moving towards offering different kernels, such
    as a BSD based kernel. This may need consideration.

    A build from source is a good solution to many of these problems, but
    not all distributions do on the fly compilation, and for those that do,
    people complain that they are too slow.

    I think the best you can do at this time, is choose a distribution that
    works for you, and comes with the packages that you want to use.

    I am not against the idea of a Universal Package Management System, but
    we are not there yet. I often want to split packages, and use customized
    versions of a particular component. I find this is not easy with
    existing package management systems, so I sometimes end up bypassing the
    package management systems altogether.

    Mark.

    --
    Mark Hobley,
    393 Quinton Road West,
    Quinton, BIRMINGHAM.
    B32 1QE.

  3. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    On 1 Jul, 17:57, tsaar2...@yahoo.com wrote:
    >
    > True, but why they call their nephews? Because it requires more than
    > one click to install the software. And I don't any reason why Linux
    > distros could not be much simpler to manage than Windows. At least
    > Linux community has this possibility, all it requires will and some
    > kind of consensus between distros.
    >


    Installing software on Windows and OS X each often require
    substantially more than one click. As to "ease of install", it
    is absurd to think that the average user is capable of
    installing either of those OSs easily (most won't even know
    what "install" means). Linux in general
    *is* easier to manage than windows, but it requires a
    different knowledge base.

    Neither Microsoft nor Apple has achieved universal one-click
    install. I don't disagree that it would be a good thing, but
    I also think a direct neural interface would be nice (like
    in the old Play Station 9 commercials). I think, however,
    that the biggest mistake the OP is making is thinking of
    "Linux" as the OS rather than the distributions. Windows is
    to OS X as Red Hat is to Debian. Why should Red Hat dump rpm
    and yum and adopt a new unified scheme just to be
    consistent with Debian?


  4. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    On 1 Jul, 17:57, tsaar2...@yahoo.com wrote:
    >
    > True, but why they call their nephews? Because it requires more than
    > one click to install the software. And I don't any reason why Linux
    > distros could not be much simpler to manage than Windows. At least
    > Linux community has this possibility, all it requires will and some
    > kind of consensus between distros.
    >


    Installing software on Windows and OS X each often require
    substantially more than one click. As to "ease of install", it
    is absurd to think that the average user is capable of
    installing either of those OSs easily (most won't even know
    what "install" means). Linux in general
    *is* easier to manage than windows, but it requires a
    different knowledge base.

    Neither Microsoft nor Apple has achieved universal one-click
    install. I don't disagree that it would be a good thing, but
    I also think a direct neural interface would be nice (like
    in the old Play Station 9 commercials). I think, however,
    that the biggest mistake the OP is making is thinking of
    "Linux" as the OS rather than the distributions. Windows is
    to OS X as Red Hat is to Debian. Why should Red Hat dump rpm
    and yum and adopt a new unified scheme just to be
    consistent with Debian?


  5. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    tsaar2003@yahoo.com writes:
    > On 1 heinš, 19:37, Rainer Weikusat wrote:
    >> tsaar2...@yahoo.com writes:
    >>
    >> [...]
    >>
    >> > As I see it, if Linux wants to be a major desktop operating system, it
    >> > needs a simple AND unified on-click package management system, which
    >> > is so simple that even my 80 year old grandmother is able to install
    >> > applications and needed drivers on her system.

    >>
    >> As I see it, Linux is an operating system kernel and it does not
    >> 'want' anything. Further, '80 years old grandmothers' don't manage
    >> their Windows systems, either, they call their nephews for help,
    >> generalized: Windows is much to complicated for most people and a
    >> really large number of people make a living by providing tech support
    >> for it.

    >
    > Yes, I know that Linux is the kernel and most of the operating system
    > utilities come from GNU.


    The point I was trying to make is that 'Linux' is not a person which
    could 'want' something.

    > True, but why they call their nephews?


    Because computers are complicated and dealing with them requires
    uncommon knowledge.

    >> > Here are some thoughts about this unified package management system.
    >> > The bottom line is, that if Linux really wants to become a desktop
    >> > operating system for the masses,

    >>
    >> The bottom line is that I can use a Linux-based system on my desktop
    >> (at work and at home, although I use the latter mainly as terminal)
    >> and I really don't care about 'the masses' (of morons providing free
    >> tech support for Windows to all their acquaintances). These 'masses'
    >> may chose to learn or not learn how to work with Linux-based systems
    >> at their own discretion and for the ones who would rather avoid that:
    >> There is a nice, hypercomplicated and highly flawed commercial OS
    >> available from a certain company located in Redmond, Wash. and it is
    >> called Windows. Give it a try.

    >
    > I have used Windows from version 3.0 up to Vista, and I have used
    > different Linux distros too.
    >
    > Why there are some many Windows support persons?


    Because there are so many Windows installations.

    [...]

    > Maybe you like to see Linux as geek operating system which is not
    > intended to masses (ie. computer-illiterate persons),


    'Linux' is still an operating system kernel. People are (with some
    success) selling Linux-based systems to 'computer-illeterate persons',
    and they have tried to create suitable operating environments for
    them. I am not among these people, and consequently, I do not care
    about the care&feeding of the market segment they have chosen to
    target. The 'literate' is actually a nice use of figurative
    language. I would guess that the majority of people are nowadays (if
    this was ever different) at best semi-literate, one reason for this
    being the observation that most people need to put a concentrated
    effort into understanding text, while this just 'happens' for me when
    I look at it. Now, what do 'we' conclude regarding the necessity for
    books targetting first graders from that, given that these exist, the
    people I am referring to wouldn't read them, either, and taking into
    account that the UNIX(*) API documentation is not among them.

    And the answer is 'nothing'. Different people do or don't do different
    things in different ways.

  6. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    tsaar2003@yahoo.com writes:
    > On 1 heinš, 19:37, Rainer Weikusat wrote:
    >> tsaar2...@yahoo.com writes:
    >>
    >> [...]
    >>
    >> > As I see it, if Linux wants to be a major desktop operating system, it
    >> > needs a simple AND unified on-click package management system, which
    >> > is so simple that even my 80 year old grandmother is able to install
    >> > applications and needed drivers on her system.

    >>
    >> As I see it, Linux is an operating system kernel and it does not
    >> 'want' anything. Further, '80 years old grandmothers' don't manage
    >> their Windows systems, either, they call their nephews for help,
    >> generalized: Windows is much to complicated for most people and a
    >> really large number of people make a living by providing tech support
    >> for it.

    >
    > Yes, I know that Linux is the kernel and most of the operating system
    > utilities come from GNU.


    The point I was trying to make is that 'Linux' is not a person which
    could 'want' something.

    > True, but why they call their nephews?


    Because computers are complicated and dealing with them requires
    uncommon knowledge.

    >> > Here are some thoughts about this unified package management system.
    >> > The bottom line is, that if Linux really wants to become a desktop
    >> > operating system for the masses,

    >>
    >> The bottom line is that I can use a Linux-based system on my desktop
    >> (at work and at home, although I use the latter mainly as terminal)
    >> and I really don't care about 'the masses' (of morons providing free
    >> tech support for Windows to all their acquaintances). These 'masses'
    >> may chose to learn or not learn how to work with Linux-based systems
    >> at their own discretion and for the ones who would rather avoid that:
    >> There is a nice, hypercomplicated and highly flawed commercial OS
    >> available from a certain company located in Redmond, Wash. and it is
    >> called Windows. Give it a try.

    >
    > I have used Windows from version 3.0 up to Vista, and I have used
    > different Linux distros too.
    >
    > Why there are some many Windows support persons?


    Because there are so many Windows installations.

    [...]

    > Maybe you like to see Linux as geek operating system which is not
    > intended to masses (ie. computer-illiterate persons),


    'Linux' is still an operating system kernel. People are (with some
    success) selling Linux-based systems to 'computer-illeterate persons',
    and they have tried to create suitable operating environments for
    them. I am not among these people, and consequently, I do not care
    about the care&feeding of the market segment they have chosen to
    target. The 'literate' is actually a nice use of figurative
    language. I would guess that the majority of people are nowadays (if
    this was ever different) at best semi-literate, one reason for this
    being the observation that most people need to put a concentrated
    effort into understanding text, while this just 'happens' for me when
    I look at it. Now, what do 'we' conclude regarding the necessity for
    books targetting first graders from that, given that these exist, the
    people I am referring to wouldn't read them, either, and taking into
    account that the UNIX(*) API documentation is not among them.

    And the answer is 'nothing'. Different people do or don't do different
    things in different ways.

  7. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.apps William Pursell wrote:
    > On 1 Jul, 17:57, tsaar2...@yahoo.com wrote:
    >>
    >> True, but why they call their nephews? Because it requires more than
    >> one click to install the software. And I don't any reason why Linux
    >> distros could not be much simpler to manage than Windows. At least
    >> Linux community has this possibility, all it requires will and some
    >> kind of consensus between distros.
    >>

    >
    > Installing software on Windows and OS X each often require
    > substantially more than one click. As to "ease of install", it
    > is absurd to think that the average user is capable of
    > installing either of those OSs easily (most won't even know
    > what "install" means). Linux in general
    > *is* easier to manage than windows, but it requires a
    > different knowledge base.
    >
    > Neither Microsoft nor Apple has achieved universal one-click
    > install. I don't disagree that it would be a good thing, but
    > I also think a direct neural interface would be nice (like
    > in the old Play Station 9 commercials). I think, however,
    > that the biggest mistake the OP is making is thinking of
    > "Linux" as the OS rather than the distributions. Windows is
    > to OS X as Red Hat is to Debian. Why should Red Hat dump rpm
    > and yum and adopt a new unified scheme just to be
    > consistent with Debian?
    >

    One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.

    Jerry

  8. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.apps William Pursell wrote:
    > On 1 Jul, 17:57, tsaar2...@yahoo.com wrote:
    >>
    >> True, but why they call their nephews? Because it requires more than
    >> one click to install the software. And I don't any reason why Linux
    >> distros could not be much simpler to manage than Windows. At least
    >> Linux community has this possibility, all it requires will and some
    >> kind of consensus between distros.
    >>

    >
    > Installing software on Windows and OS X each often require
    > substantially more than one click. As to "ease of install", it
    > is absurd to think that the average user is capable of
    > installing either of those OSs easily (most won't even know
    > what "install" means). Linux in general
    > *is* easier to manage than windows, but it requires a
    > different knowledge base.
    >
    > Neither Microsoft nor Apple has achieved universal one-click
    > install. I don't disagree that it would be a good thing, but
    > I also think a direct neural interface would be nice (like
    > in the old Play Station 9 commercials). I think, however,
    > that the biggest mistake the OP is making is thinking of
    > "Linux" as the OS rather than the distributions. Windows is
    > to OS X as Red Hat is to Debian. Why should Red Hat dump rpm
    > and yum and adopt a new unified scheme just to be
    > consistent with Debian?
    >

    One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.

    Jerry

  9. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system Jerry Peters wrote:
    > One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    > takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    > application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.


    I'm glad you noticed that too. A Microsoft Engineer told me that the
    reboot problem had been fixed in XP, so software packages don't need to reboot
    following installation. However, I still find that Micros~1dows based
    computers require a reboot when I put new software on (even if the
    computer does not go blue screen).

    Mark.

    --
    Mark Hobley,
    393 Quinton Road West,
    Quinton, BIRMINGHAM.
    B32 1QE.

  10. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system Jerry Peters wrote:
    > One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    > takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    > application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.


    I'm glad you noticed that too. A Microsoft Engineer told me that the
    reboot problem had been fixed in XP, so software packages don't need to reboot
    following installation. However, I still find that Micros~1dows based
    computers require a reboot when I put new software on (even if the
    computer does not go blue screen).

    Mark.

    --
    Mark Hobley,
    393 Quinton Road West,
    Quinton, BIRMINGHAM.
    B32 1QE.

  11. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system tsaar2003@yahoo.com wrote:

    | I have used a few Linux desktop distros for the past couple of years
    | now, and one thing that really bugs me, is that almost each Linux
    | distro has its own package management system - and building and
    | installing a driver or an application from source requires dropping to
    | command mode and issuing an variable number of commands.

    Gentoo lets you compile from source easier.


    | In my experience, the ordinary people feel, that Linux is for geeks
    | only, and it is too complicated system for an ordinary person to
    | install and use. Some distros (like *ubuntu) make installation process
    | like a snap, although their disk partition process is still quite
    | complicated, unless you want to use entire disk for the Linux.

    Linux PER SE really is for geeks only. Ubuntu is less so. Ubuntu is
    built using Linux and other stuff like GNU tools.

    As a geek, if you make an OS, whether it is built upon Linux or not,
    and your OS is built as you seem to want, then I won't use it. That's
    not a remark against you. That's just saying I want something which
    is different than what you want.

    Microsoft could make an OS based on GNU/Linux if they wanted to. They
    would have to release the source code, among other things. But it would
    certainly be something that *I* would NOT want to use if they did this.
    Why? Because I *like* to build my own ... my way. All that would be
    different for me if Microsoft did this would be that Microsoft might
    become a potential employer for lots of geeks like me (I could work for
    a company that wanted me to build Linux systems for them _their_ way).


    | As I see it, if Linux wants to be a major desktop operating system, it
    | needs a simple AND unified on-click package management system, which
    | is so simple that even my 80 year old grandmother is able to install
    | applications and needed drivers on her system.

    Linux doesn't want anything. Some Linux people want it to be a major
    desktop operating system. What *I* want is for hardware vendors to
    make hardware that Linux works with. But because hardware vendors
    don't like to use standards for so many things, that means a lot of
    new hardware won't work on Linux unless Linux looks like a _market_
    to them. So be it.


    | Yes, I agree that some distros are not meant to be used by an average
    | person, but still, I think that even LFS (Linux from Scratch) and
    | Gentoo could benefit from this unified package management system.

    LFS and Gentoo have what they need. It sounds like you need to have a
    system pre-built for you.


    | This unified one-click package manager should work on any (major)
    | Linux distro and it should have following abilities:

    That is inherintly a conflict (of interest). Many distros are made
    for the purpose of exploring alternative ideas that may be incompatible
    with whatever standard thing you want to impose.


    | - Install a distro dependent pre-compiled application / driver binary
    | - Compile and install a distro dependent application / driver from the
    | source

    You want to complicate people's lives by making them choose between
    compiling from source vs. installing a pre-compiled binary? :-)


    | - Recompile and reinstall the driver automatically if the kernel
    | version changes
    | - Compile an application/driver from the general source, apply a
    | distro specific patches, and install it automatically

    What about my own patches?

    | - Install (and optionally compile) any dependencies automatically

    That means someone has to track these. And they differ depending on
    things like compile time options.

    What if a package will make use of something else *IF* it is present,
    but happens to not be present right now. Then the system owner decides
    to install that weak dependency later on. Would you want this package
    that has the weak reference to it to also be recompiled?


    | - Remove selected application and its dependencies

    That means these have to be tracked as installed.


    | - Take a snapshot of the current system state (applications and
    | drivers)
    | - Restore (rebuild) the system automatically to a given state

    You've gone way beyond what the "average Joe" user wants to even know
    about. Many people I know don't care about OSes. They just want to
    read their email and visit their regular web pages. And they also
    want the the spammy popups to stop.


    | This list is only for getting an idea, what the unified package
    | manager should be able to do. However, all this should be done by a
    | "one-click" and automagically to the user. It doesn't rule out
    | possibilities that a user could select some options for the package at
    | installation time. The unified package manager should also hide all
    | distro specific quirks, so that user don't have to practically know
    | anything about the system and where the binaries and/or sources are
    | located and installed. I do acknowledge that the /etc-files are
    | problematic at the moment.
    |
    | Maybe this system needs some kind of top-level centralized database,
    | which has references to all known (registered) applications/drivers
    | and drivers source code and dependencies. This top level database
    | could also contain some application specific options and features that
    | a user could select before compilation. This top-level database, would
    | be updated from the distros, so that if any distro "registers" an
    | application/driver for its use, this top level database should get
    | notified also about this, so that the other distros get to know about
    | this, too. This would give also some kind of inter-distro visibility
    | which might be useful for the distro maintainers and advanced users.
    | If someone registers a new application/driver (or a new version of the
    | application/driver) to this top level database, all the distro
    | maintainers could see this and decide whether or not to include this
    | version to their distro.
    |
    | In parallel to this centralized database, there would be distro-
    | specific top level database, which would contain actual "physical"
    | source code for the application / driver. This will provide some
    | redundancy storage if the package is "removed" from its original www
    | location, it is still available through some distro's database.
    |
    | Then there may need to be another distro specific second level
    | database, which would contain patches and installation scripts etc.
    | This second level database might contain also some distro specific
    | installation options.
    |
    | Then there night be a third level (informal) distributed database for
    | a customized systems and applications which are based on specific
    | distro.
    |
    | Here are some thoughts about this unified package management system.
    | The bottom line is, that if Linux really wants to become a desktop
    | operating system for the masses, it really needs to provide a simple
    | and unified package management system so that an average non-geek user
    | can select and install any application and/or a driver either for a
    | pre-built distro specific binary, or from the (general?) source, and
    | the system should (compile) and install the driver/application and all
    | its dependencies automagically.

    So as soo as you come out with all this (assuming you find some geeks to
    go along with it and do all the detail work for you), someone else will
    have a similar, but incompatibly different, idea. And they will say your
    idea needs to be scrapped.

    Linux is about choice. There are plenty of package manage systems out there.
    Why haven't you chosen one of them? If none are to your liking, can you say
    why for a few specific ones?

    --
    |WARNING: Due to extreme spam, googlegroups.com is blocked. Due to ignorance |
    | by the abuse department, bellsouth.net is blocked. If you post to |
    | Usenet from these places, find another Usenet provider ASAP. |
    | Phil Howard KA9WGN (email for humans: first name in lower case at ipal.net) |

  12. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system tsaar2003@yahoo.com wrote:

    | I have used a few Linux desktop distros for the past couple of years
    | now, and one thing that really bugs me, is that almost each Linux
    | distro has its own package management system - and building and
    | installing a driver or an application from source requires dropping to
    | command mode and issuing an variable number of commands.

    Gentoo lets you compile from source easier.


    | In my experience, the ordinary people feel, that Linux is for geeks
    | only, and it is too complicated system for an ordinary person to
    | install and use. Some distros (like *ubuntu) make installation process
    | like a snap, although their disk partition process is still quite
    | complicated, unless you want to use entire disk for the Linux.

    Linux PER SE really is for geeks only. Ubuntu is less so. Ubuntu is
    built using Linux and other stuff like GNU tools.

    As a geek, if you make an OS, whether it is built upon Linux or not,
    and your OS is built as you seem to want, then I won't use it. That's
    not a remark against you. That's just saying I want something which
    is different than what you want.

    Microsoft could make an OS based on GNU/Linux if they wanted to. They
    would have to release the source code, among other things. But it would
    certainly be something that *I* would NOT want to use if they did this.
    Why? Because I *like* to build my own ... my way. All that would be
    different for me if Microsoft did this would be that Microsoft might
    become a potential employer for lots of geeks like me (I could work for
    a company that wanted me to build Linux systems for them _their_ way).


    | As I see it, if Linux wants to be a major desktop operating system, it
    | needs a simple AND unified on-click package management system, which
    | is so simple that even my 80 year old grandmother is able to install
    | applications and needed drivers on her system.

    Linux doesn't want anything. Some Linux people want it to be a major
    desktop operating system. What *I* want is for hardware vendors to
    make hardware that Linux works with. But because hardware vendors
    don't like to use standards for so many things, that means a lot of
    new hardware won't work on Linux unless Linux looks like a _market_
    to them. So be it.


    | Yes, I agree that some distros are not meant to be used by an average
    | person, but still, I think that even LFS (Linux from Scratch) and
    | Gentoo could benefit from this unified package management system.

    LFS and Gentoo have what they need. It sounds like you need to have a
    system pre-built for you.


    | This unified one-click package manager should work on any (major)
    | Linux distro and it should have following abilities:

    That is inherintly a conflict (of interest). Many distros are made
    for the purpose of exploring alternative ideas that may be incompatible
    with whatever standard thing you want to impose.


    | - Install a distro dependent pre-compiled application / driver binary
    | - Compile and install a distro dependent application / driver from the
    | source

    You want to complicate people's lives by making them choose between
    compiling from source vs. installing a pre-compiled binary? :-)


    | - Recompile and reinstall the driver automatically if the kernel
    | version changes
    | - Compile an application/driver from the general source, apply a
    | distro specific patches, and install it automatically

    What about my own patches?

    | - Install (and optionally compile) any dependencies automatically

    That means someone has to track these. And they differ depending on
    things like compile time options.

    What if a package will make use of something else *IF* it is present,
    but happens to not be present right now. Then the system owner decides
    to install that weak dependency later on. Would you want this package
    that has the weak reference to it to also be recompiled?


    | - Remove selected application and its dependencies

    That means these have to be tracked as installed.


    | - Take a snapshot of the current system state (applications and
    | drivers)
    | - Restore (rebuild) the system automatically to a given state

    You've gone way beyond what the "average Joe" user wants to even know
    about. Many people I know don't care about OSes. They just want to
    read their email and visit their regular web pages. And they also
    want the the spammy popups to stop.


    | This list is only for getting an idea, what the unified package
    | manager should be able to do. However, all this should be done by a
    | "one-click" and automagically to the user. It doesn't rule out
    | possibilities that a user could select some options for the package at
    | installation time. The unified package manager should also hide all
    | distro specific quirks, so that user don't have to practically know
    | anything about the system and where the binaries and/or sources are
    | located and installed. I do acknowledge that the /etc-files are
    | problematic at the moment.
    |
    | Maybe this system needs some kind of top-level centralized database,
    | which has references to all known (registered) applications/drivers
    | and drivers source code and dependencies. This top level database
    | could also contain some application specific options and features that
    | a user could select before compilation. This top-level database, would
    | be updated from the distros, so that if any distro "registers" an
    | application/driver for its use, this top level database should get
    | notified also about this, so that the other distros get to know about
    | this, too. This would give also some kind of inter-distro visibility
    | which might be useful for the distro maintainers and advanced users.
    | If someone registers a new application/driver (or a new version of the
    | application/driver) to this top level database, all the distro
    | maintainers could see this and decide whether or not to include this
    | version to their distro.
    |
    | In parallel to this centralized database, there would be distro-
    | specific top level database, which would contain actual "physical"
    | source code for the application / driver. This will provide some
    | redundancy storage if the package is "removed" from its original www
    | location, it is still available through some distro's database.
    |
    | Then there may need to be another distro specific second level
    | database, which would contain patches and installation scripts etc.
    | This second level database might contain also some distro specific
    | installation options.
    |
    | Then there night be a third level (informal) distributed database for
    | a customized systems and applications which are based on specific
    | distro.
    |
    | Here are some thoughts about this unified package management system.
    | The bottom line is, that if Linux really wants to become a desktop
    | operating system for the masses, it really needs to provide a simple
    | and unified package management system so that an average non-geek user
    | can select and install any application and/or a driver either for a
    | pre-built distro specific binary, or from the (general?) source, and
    | the system should (compile) and install the driver/application and all
    | its dependencies automagically.

    So as soo as you come out with all this (assuming you find some geeks to
    go along with it and do all the detail work for you), someone else will
    have a similar, but incompatibly different, idea. And they will say your
    idea needs to be scrapped.

    Linux is about choice. There are plenty of package manage systems out there.
    Why haven't you chosen one of them? If none are to your liking, can you say
    why for a few specific ones?

    --
    |WARNING: Due to extreme spam, googlegroups.com is blocked. Due to ignorance |
    | by the abuse department, bellsouth.net is blocked. If you post to |
    | Usenet from these places, find another Usenet provider ASAP. |
    | Phil Howard KA9WGN (email for humans: first name in lower case at ipal.net) |

  13. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system Mark Hobley wrote:

    | In comp.os.linux.development.system Jerry Peters wrote:
    |> One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    |> takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    |> application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.
    |
    | I'm glad you noticed that too. A Microsoft Engineer told me that the
    | reboot problem had been fixed in XP, so software packages don't need to reboot
    | following installation. However, I still find that Micros~1dows based
    | computers require a reboot when I put new software on (even if the
    | computer does not go blue screen).

    I sometimes reboot Linux just because it is easier. I'm sure Windows could
    kill all the processes using something that got changed. But people would
    have a hard time understanding why their Word window just closed because some
    other program was installed. Rebooting is done, at least in part, because
    that way people _expect_ everything to be restarted. if many programs were
    killed or restarted without a reboot, they might think something is wrong.

    I get around the problem by installing as much software as I can the first
    time around. If I see something "I probably won't use", I install it anyway.
    Disk space is cheap. If I need it, it won't kill something else to start
    using it.

    --
    |WARNING: Due to extreme spam, googlegroups.com is blocked. Due to ignorance |
    | by the abuse department, bellsouth.net is blocked. If you post to |
    | Usenet from these places, find another Usenet provider ASAP. |
    | Phil Howard KA9WGN (email for humans: first name in lower case at ipal.net) |

  14. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system Mark Hobley wrote:

    | In comp.os.linux.development.system Jerry Peters wrote:
    |> One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    |> takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    |> application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.
    |
    | I'm glad you noticed that too. A Microsoft Engineer told me that the
    | reboot problem had been fixed in XP, so software packages don't need to reboot
    | following installation. However, I still find that Micros~1dows based
    | computers require a reboot when I put new software on (even if the
    | computer does not go blue screen).

    I sometimes reboot Linux just because it is easier. I'm sure Windows could
    kill all the processes using something that got changed. But people would
    have a hard time understanding why their Word window just closed because some
    other program was installed. Rebooting is done, at least in part, because
    that way people _expect_ everything to be restarted. if many programs were
    killed or restarted without a reboot, they might think something is wrong.

    I get around the problem by installing as much software as I can the first
    time around. If I see something "I probably won't use", I install it anyway.
    Disk space is cheap. If I need it, it won't kill something else to start
    using it.

    --
    |WARNING: Due to extreme spam, googlegroups.com is blocked. Due to ignorance |
    | by the abuse department, bellsouth.net is blocked. If you post to |
    | Usenet from these places, find another Usenet provider ASAP. |
    | Phil Howard KA9WGN (email for humans: first name in lower case at ipal.net) |

  15. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system William Pursell wrote:

    | Installing software on Windows and OS X each often require
    | substantially more than one click. As to "ease of install", it
    | is absurd to think that the average user is capable of
    | installing either of those OSs easily (most won't even know
    | what "install" means). Linux in general
    | *is* easier to manage than windows, but it requires a
    | different knowledge base.

    That reminds me of a case many years ago when I got a new computer at work
    as part of a company wide program to get everyone to upgrade to Windows 98.
    Since I was working in the IT department, we were expected to install our
    own Windows systems, while the people who did the Windows support for the
    non-technical people in the company did it for others. For a lot of people
    it took all day to get it installed. It took me FOUR days! But that was
    not because I was somehow slower at it. In fact, I installed it about 20
    times. I then checked on things, improved the arrangements and order of
    packages, wiped the disk, and started all over and followed me new set of
    notes. My boss was wondering why it was taking me so long and wondering
    about my Windows skills (I was in fact a Network and Unix Admin). But I
    had the last laugh with a Windows system that actually stayed up and running
    for months at a time, and never blue screened in the year or so I remained
    there.

    While there certainly are limits, there are some things that can be tweaked
    in Windows to make the system more stable. One thing I did was partition
    the disk into several areas. The system was on C: and the data was on D:.
    So if I ever did need to re-install, I could reformat C: completely and not
    lose my data. I learned that a "re-install" without reformatting was not
    really as good. I also had 2 more partitions, one of which had _exactly_
    the same number of sectors as C: (and I had to tweak the partitioning in
    Linux to get it right on the spot). Once my system was installed exactly
    as I wanted it, I image-copied parition C: to partition F: as a backup
    (using Linux for that step). My system turned out to be so stable I never
    had to restore from F: but now days, with so many attacks on Windows, I
    would have needed that if I had Windows network exposed (as in fact it was
    back then at that job, as were also my Solaris and Linux machines).


    | Neither Microsoft nor Apple has achieved universal one-click
    | install. I don't disagree that it would be a good thing, but
    | I also think a direct neural interface would be nice (like
    | in the old Play Station 9 commercials). I think, however,
    | that the biggest mistake the OP is making is thinking of
    | "Linux" as the OS rather than the distributions. Windows is
    | to OS X as Red Hat is to Debian. Why should Red Hat dump rpm
    | and yum and adopt a new unified scheme just to be
    | consistent with Debian?

    Once you get to a point where the OS is a one-click install, then just how
    much different is it from an embedded system that happens to have changeable
    devices? And then there are people that can't even handle that. For them,
    an "embedded internet device" is mostly what they need.

    --
    |WARNING: Due to extreme spam, googlegroups.com is blocked. Due to ignorance |
    | by the abuse department, bellsouth.net is blocked. If you post to |
    | Usenet from these places, find another Usenet provider ASAP. |
    | Phil Howard KA9WGN (email for humans: first name in lower case at ipal.net) |

  16. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    In comp.os.linux.development.system William Pursell wrote:

    | Installing software on Windows and OS X each often require
    | substantially more than one click. As to "ease of install", it
    | is absurd to think that the average user is capable of
    | installing either of those OSs easily (most won't even know
    | what "install" means). Linux in general
    | *is* easier to manage than windows, but it requires a
    | different knowledge base.

    That reminds me of a case many years ago when I got a new computer at work
    as part of a company wide program to get everyone to upgrade to Windows 98.
    Since I was working in the IT department, we were expected to install our
    own Windows systems, while the people who did the Windows support for the
    non-technical people in the company did it for others. For a lot of people
    it took all day to get it installed. It took me FOUR days! But that was
    not because I was somehow slower at it. In fact, I installed it about 20
    times. I then checked on things, improved the arrangements and order of
    packages, wiped the disk, and started all over and followed me new set of
    notes. My boss was wondering why it was taking me so long and wondering
    about my Windows skills (I was in fact a Network and Unix Admin). But I
    had the last laugh with a Windows system that actually stayed up and running
    for months at a time, and never blue screened in the year or so I remained
    there.

    While there certainly are limits, there are some things that can be tweaked
    in Windows to make the system more stable. One thing I did was partition
    the disk into several areas. The system was on C: and the data was on D:.
    So if I ever did need to re-install, I could reformat C: completely and not
    lose my data. I learned that a "re-install" without reformatting was not
    really as good. I also had 2 more partitions, one of which had _exactly_
    the same number of sectors as C: (and I had to tweak the partitioning in
    Linux to get it right on the spot). Once my system was installed exactly
    as I wanted it, I image-copied parition C: to partition F: as a backup
    (using Linux for that step). My system turned out to be so stable I never
    had to restore from F: but now days, with so many attacks on Windows, I
    would have needed that if I had Windows network exposed (as in fact it was
    back then at that job, as were also my Solaris and Linux machines).


    | Neither Microsoft nor Apple has achieved universal one-click
    | install. I don't disagree that it would be a good thing, but
    | I also think a direct neural interface would be nice (like
    | in the old Play Station 9 commercials). I think, however,
    | that the biggest mistake the OP is making is thinking of
    | "Linux" as the OS rather than the distributions. Windows is
    | to OS X as Red Hat is to Debian. Why should Red Hat dump rpm
    | and yum and adopt a new unified scheme just to be
    | consistent with Debian?

    Once you get to a point where the OS is a one-click install, then just how
    much different is it from an embedded system that happens to have changeable
    devices? And then there are people that can't even handle that. For them,
    an "embedded internet device" is mostly what they need.

    --
    |WARNING: Due to extreme spam, googlegroups.com is blocked. Due to ignorance |
    | by the abuse department, bellsouth.net is blocked. If you post to |
    | Usenet from these places, find another Usenet provider ASAP. |
    | Phil Howard KA9WGN (email for humans: first name in lower case at ipal.net) |

  17. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    Phil Howard writes:
    > I get around the problem by installing as much software as I can the
    > first time around.


    What problem?

    > I install it anyway. Disk space is cheap. If I need it, it won't kill
    > something else to start using it.


    What Linux applications have you found to kill things when installed?
    --
    John Hasler
    john@dhh.gt.org
    Dancing Horse Hill
    Elmwood, WI USA

  18. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    John Hasler writes:
    > Phil Howard writes:
    >> I get around the problem by installing as much software as I can the
    >> first time around.

    >
    > What problem?
    >
    >> I install it anyway. Disk space is cheap. If I need it, it won't kill
    >> something else to start using it.

    >
    > What Linux applications have you found to kill things when installed?


    This is not an experience of me, either. I am Debian user since 1998
    (SuSE and RH before that) and no new installation of anything or
    upgrade of an existing something has ever terminated an application I
    was using on its own.

  19. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    Hi,

    > |> One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    > |> takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    > |> application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.


    Including the windows installer itself ;-) But not all Programs require
    a restart anymore...

    > | I'm glad you noticed that too. A Microsoft Engineer told me that the
    > | reboot problem had been fixed in XP, so software packages don't need to reboot
    > | following installation. However, I still find that Micros~1dows based
    > | computers require a reboot when I put new software on (even if the
    > | computer does not go blue screen).


    Well, Windows itself might be comfortable wit not rebooting after an
    install, but many installation programs have the reboot as part of
    themselves. Windows won't interfere, if the developer of an application
    feels the computer needs to be restarted after the installation. And
    there are some cases, where settings must be made at reboot time (via a
    special, elaborate registry mechanism) or settings only take effect
    *reliably* after reboot... This has to do with the integration of
    Operating system, run-time libraries, graphical system, user interface
    and others.

    > I sometimes reboot Linux just because it is easier. I'm sure Windows could
    > kill all the processes using something that got changed. But people would
    > have a hard time understanding why their Word window just closed because some
    > other program was installed. Rebooting is done, at least in part, because
    > that way people _expect_ everything to be restarted. if many programs were
    > killed or restarted without a reboot, they might think something is wrong.


    Well, I never reboot Linux on purpose, everything requiring a reboot is
    a Kernel update and the reboot can wait until I shut down my computer
    for the night, anyway.

    Some people are so used to rebooting windows, they do expect it. Just
    like when you're helping someone with the "monitor doesn't work"
    phenomenon you tell them to remove the plug, blow on it and re-install
    it. A sure way to get them to check the plug, otherwise they probably
    won't care to creep under desks and shelves, just to check the plug they
    "put in place personally"...

    On the other hand, Linux does have several very good installation
    systems, depending on your distribution. There even is a distribution
    and hardware-independent one: configure. So if you're not satisfied with
    your Linux, go check a different distribution... Mine comes with Live-CD
    (so you can test it before you install), installs in less than 20
    minutes and has a package-manager which takes care of everything (I
    haven't downloaded software manually for ages)... I can install both rpm
    and deb packages (if they're compiled for my hardware platform which is
    usually the bigger problem) with ease. So why should I want a "better"
    installer, when the Windows world is still content with: *manually
    downloading, *manually installing, *answering a lot of useless questions
    during installation, *occasionally rebooting, *not being able to safely
    remove everything and so on? I do like my package manger ;-)

    Ciao...

    PS: the usual disclaimer....


  20. Re: Universal Package Manager System for Linux?

    Hi,

    > |> One thing I've often wondered about it why installing Windows programs
    > |> takes to long? It easily takes 5 minutes to install just a small
    > |> application, not including the almost obligatory reboot.


    Including the windows installer itself ;-) But not all Programs require
    a restart anymore...

    > | I'm glad you noticed that too. A Microsoft Engineer told me that the
    > | reboot problem had been fixed in XP, so software packages don't need to reboot
    > | following installation. However, I still find that Micros~1dows based
    > | computers require a reboot when I put new software on (even if the
    > | computer does not go blue screen).


    Well, Windows itself might be comfortable wit not rebooting after an
    install, but many installation programs have the reboot as part of
    themselves. Windows won't interfere, if the developer of an application
    feels the computer needs to be restarted after the installation. And
    there are some cases, where settings must be made at reboot time (via a
    special, elaborate registry mechanism) or settings only take effect
    *reliably* after reboot... This has to do with the integration of
    Operating system, run-time libraries, graphical system, user interface
    and others.

    > I sometimes reboot Linux just because it is easier. I'm sure Windows could
    > kill all the processes using something that got changed. But people would
    > have a hard time understanding why their Word window just closed because some
    > other program was installed. Rebooting is done, at least in part, because
    > that way people _expect_ everything to be restarted. if many programs were
    > killed or restarted without a reboot, they might think something is wrong.


    Well, I never reboot Linux on purpose, everything requiring a reboot is
    a Kernel update and the reboot can wait until I shut down my computer
    for the night, anyway.

    Some people are so used to rebooting windows, they do expect it. Just
    like when you're helping someone with the "monitor doesn't work"
    phenomenon you tell them to remove the plug, blow on it and re-install
    it. A sure way to get them to check the plug, otherwise they probably
    won't care to creep under desks and shelves, just to check the plug they
    "put in place personally"...

    On the other hand, Linux does have several very good installation
    systems, depending on your distribution. There even is a distribution
    and hardware-independent one: configure. So if you're not satisfied with
    your Linux, go check a different distribution... Mine comes with Live-CD
    (so you can test it before you install), installs in less than 20
    minutes and has a package-manager which takes care of everything (I
    haven't downloaded software manually for ages)... I can install both rpm
    and deb packages (if they're compiled for my hardware platform which is
    usually the bigger problem) with ease. So why should I want a "better"
    installer, when the Windows world is still content with: *manually
    downloading, *manually installing, *answering a lot of useless questions
    during installation, *occasionally rebooting, *not being able to safely
    remove everything and so on? I do like my package manger ;-)

    Ciao...

    PS: the usual disclaimer....


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