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View Poll Results: Why are commercial apps for linux so badly packaged ?
Was just a proof of concept. Packaging was not planned 1 5.88%
They donít want to be seen by MS as promoting Linux 2 11.76%
They think the great thing with Linux is that users sort themselves out 10 58.82%
They are waiting for an universal installer to be available before doing anything 4 23.53%
Voters: 17. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-29-2003, 09:14 AM   #1
dukeinlondon
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Why is commercial software for linux so badly packaged ?


I recently installed Limewire (I know it's open source) and was surprised that the thing didn't even drop an icon on the desktop. Worse, the install script did not put an icon anywhere on the system for the application !

I installed Yahoo messenger for a laugh and although the rpm tried to put an icon on the desktop, the actual png was not there.

I installed Java and although the rpm works fine, it doesn't try to install the plugin for mozilla, doesn't create a Java environment variable and so on. Java web start as I remember doesn't even try to put a mime type in mozilla either with really is strange.

NVidia drivers have to be run outside of X which is fine but why is the package not runnable and why doesn't it switch to the right runlevel automatically after it is started by root and run itself from there ? and then restart X when finished, after having backed up and modified the XF86Config file ?

I tried typing tutor and the java package (for macos and Linux) installs fine on my box but again, no icon and no menu entry. Why did they even bother porting it to Java ?

Flash, real player and acrobat reader are just the same.

The crown goes to unrela tournament 2003 where the install script was located on the last CD and where NO mention of the linux version was made on the packaging ! I bought it specifically because it ran on linux so I was not impressed.

I agree that the packaging situation is not that good on linux (various formats, file locations) but then again, it's really easy compared to porting anything from windows ! So why don't they do just that ?

And also, the linux version are really hard to find on most download sections (check on Real's site).

Compared to how easy it is to install packages in mandrake and debian, it beats me that commercial companies can't get it right.

Last edited by dukeinlondon; 12-29-2003 at 09:19 AM.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 10:27 AM   #2
sirpelidor
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i've been wonder the same thing. but i guess most of us just somehow "get-by" by using some other method. oh well....

p.s: the new java 1.4 auto set environment variable heheh ^_^
 
Old 12-29-2003, 10:55 AM   #3
carlywarly
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Is it somehow a backhanded compliment that linux users are such a competent lot that we can do it anyway? No, maybe not........
 
Old 12-29-2003, 11:12 AM   #4
trickykid
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Have you ever thought in why most packages don't place icons on your desktop? Just think of the many different desktops and windowmanagers you can be running or choose from. Its probably one reason why developers don't waste their time making their program place a silly icon or menu item for literally dozens of different environments, that to me isn't what's important, its the program, not the icon.

I think I would actually focus more on the actual package or product rather than if it places an icon on my desktop. Hell, even when I installed programs on Windows, I hated the auto placement of icons on my desktop.

Don't judge and say Linux apps have poor package management, cause well, if your only going to complain if they don't place an icon on your desktop, you should just use Windows or something.

Its like the person complaining service is down when they get their internet from one of those free dialup ISP's..

No pun intended of course, your complaints seem very silly to me and it makes me angry you would create a thread cause mainly some applications you installed didn't create an icon for you.

Oh well.. that's my two cents.

Last edited by trickykid; 12-29-2003 at 12:14 PM.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 11:32 AM   #5
dukeinlondon
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Easy tiger. I am talking about commercial packages, and I am not judging linux apps by their packaging. I am just asking a question. By the way, on the distros I use, apps are very well packaged, with menu entries, mime types and icons.

Commercial ones aren't and come with none of that. And when they don't come as an rpm or deb, then you have to hunt for the name of the executable. How smart is that ?

If icons and menu entries don't matter, why do most linux desktop environment offer the facility ?

And I am not one who complains about free services. I even pay for the privilege of being here so give me a break.

And I hate the statement "if you are not happy why don't u use windows ?" If you are not happy with my post, then move along. Feel free to put me on your ignore list by the way.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 11:47 AM   #6
trickykid
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Quote:
Originally posted by dukeinlondon
Easy tiger. I am talking about commercial packages, and I am not judging linux apps by their packaging. I am just asking a question. By the way, on the distros I use, apps are very well packaged, with menu entries, mime types and icons.

Commercial ones aren't and come with none of that. And when they don't come as an rpm or deb, then you have to hunt for the name of the executable. How smart is that ?

If icons and menu entries don't matter, why do most linux desktop environment offer the facility ?

And I am not one who complains about free services. I even pay for the privilege of being here so give me a break.

And I hate the statement "if you are not happy why don't u use windows ?" If you are not happy with my post, then move along. Feel free to put me on your ignore list by the way.
Count how many desktops there are in Linux? Would or could you program your software to include an icon placement for every single one? I wouldn't.

Also I was talking to a mate and he mentioned that multiplatform install sheild is what puts icons on desktops, etc and its very expensive. Out of all the programs you listed, which one did you pay for or had to pay for? Just about all of them were free most likely, except maybe the Unreal Tournament, but just think, if the provider is giving the software away for free, I don't think they are going to pay for something to make icons on the desktop.

Oh, and don't say you pay to use this site. If your a contributing member, that is not why you become one, its a donation to help the site, not giving you the privilege of being here. We have thousands of members that are a part of this site that aren't contributing members.

Like I said, no pun intended but I feel you created a thread I find very silly in your complaints, it comes off as just even pure laziness in your part in making your own link in your menu or icon on your desktop just cause the program didn't do it for you. I personally have bigger complaints when dealing with software other than if it created a link or not. Give the people a break man, they are giving it to you for free in a very multiplatform environment, unlike Windows where you have well, the Windows desktop and only that one desktop.

Regards.

PS. I don't put members on my ignore list, that's childish and well, I have to moderate as well so I have to see all when reading threads/posts.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 12:06 PM   #7
dukeinlondon
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Gnome and KDE share the same desktop icon file and menu specification so there is nothing to pay. It takes a few shell lines.

Packaging is not limited to icons by the way. What about plugins and file associations ? Most open source browsers use the mozilla's plugin directory. Why do open source packagers worry about these things and not commercial companies ?

I contribute here (and in other places) because I don't take this site for granted and I hope it helps it's developpment. Check what's happening to wikipedia. So I do pay for the privilege, although I don't have to (which I happen to be aware of, thank you very much)


If no pun intended so don't use words like "silly". And if you get angry with posts that are just questions, well, grow up.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 12:14 PM   #8
trickykid
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Quote:
Originally posted by dukeinlondon
If no pun intended so don't use words like "silly". And if you get angry with posts that are just questions, well, grow up.
I never meant to pun you, just the question in which I don't agree with and felt like sharing my opinions. I do think its silly to worry about something that is so small in which no one else seems to care so much about and proclaim the "package management" is poor based on whether or not it creates that icon or not for you... That's just how I feel. If you don't like posts like this, well, don't post threads that will create others to share their opinions and ideas with you. I can get angry at whatever post I want, its my right and shouldn't affect anyone else. So the next time you tell me to grow up, you better think about it before saying it as that is crossing the line buddy and getting too personal. Not once did I make my opinions personal against you in my sharing of my thoughts.

But yeah, it is a privilege to use this site, not a right. Its the donations that help keep sites like this running, in which its much appreciated.

Cheers.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 12:23 PM   #9
stickman
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Given the number of window-manager/desktop/browser combinations, it would take quite a bit of work to guess where to make the necessary modifications. You can make the same argument about plugins in a Windows environment if you are not using the default browser (ie Firebird instead of IE).
 
Old 12-29-2003, 12:25 PM   #10
trickykid
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Quote:
Originally posted by stickman
Given the number of window-manager/desktop/browser combinations, it would take quite a bit of work to guess where to make the necessary modifications. You can make the same argument about plugins in a Windows environment if you are not using the default browser (ie Firebird instead of IE).
Exactly the first thing that I pointed out as well..
 
Old 12-29-2003, 02:03 PM   #11
carlywarly
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I'll just point out that I think the nvidia comments are absolutely spot on. Some distros automatically write an /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 file that is ready to run by the time the distro install is finished. I think it would be excellent if nvidia could produce an installer that essentially does the same. The Win versions of their drivers install and don't require file editing. nvidia is a fairly large concern. I'm sure they could sort it out.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 04:32 PM   #12
dukeinlondon
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Quote:
Originally posted by stickman
Given the number of window-manager/desktop/browser combinations, it would take quite a bit of work to guess where to make the necessary modifications. You can make the same argument about plugins in a Windows environment if you are not using the default browser (ie Firebird instead of IE).
Quite right but at least the IE and even Mozilla get configured. All desktop oriented distros (where plugins matter) use Mozilla to an extent so that's not a complicate config to do.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 04:43 PM   #13
dukeinlondon
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Quote:
Originally posted by trickykid
I never meant to pun you, just the question in which I don't agree with and felt like sharing my opinions. I do think its silly to worry about something that is so small in which no one else seems to care so much about and proclaim the "package management" is poor based on whether or not it creates that icon or not for you... That's just how I feel. If you don't like posts like this, well, don't post threads that will create others to share their opinions and ideas with you. I can get angry at whatever post I want, its my right and shouldn't affect anyone else. So the next time you tell me to grow up, you better think about it before saying it as that is crossing the line buddy and getting too personal. Not once did I make my opinions personal against you in my sharing of my thoughts.

But yeah, it is a privilege to use this site, not a right. Its the donations that help keep sites like this running, in which its much appreciated.

Cheers.
I didn't think you read the post did you ? Where do I criticise linux package management ? I am just wondering why commercial companies don't do any effort to get their stuff installed that's all. It was a question squarely focused on commercial companies understand? These guys want everyone to run their stuff, free or not or they woudn't bother porting it.that was all
 
Old 12-29-2003, 05:53 PM   #14
trickykid
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Quote:
Originally posted by dukeinlondon
I didn't think you read the post did you ? Where do I criticise linux package management ? I am just wondering why commercial companies don't do any effort to get their stuff installed that's all. It was a question squarely focused on commercial companies understand? These guys want everyone to run their stuff, free or not or they woudn't bother porting it.that was all
Okay, just because a company makes it and then gives it away for free doesn't mean I still agree with you. Just like the opinions I stated previously, I can really care less if any software I install on Linux or any other OS for that matter doesn't install an icon or link, takes me like 2 seconds to make one myself. I don't believe that its poor management just because they don't create an icon for you, that's just dumb to me to even care about.
Now if the software I install doesn't install properly and won't run, that's another story in which I could say they don't make an effort to get their software installed to a satisfactory condition on my system.
I really don't think an auto icon addition to some software is going to make a bigger impact for people to use it. I definitely wouldn't base my judgement on software cause it didn't to these simple tasks for me.

You have to also consider that I could have Mozilla installed an running from my own /home directory, or my libs installed in another directory on my system and so on..
These developers are most likely taking into account that there are so many different versions of Linux, Browsers, Desktops and such that they aren't going to assume everyone has them in the same locations.
You have to also consider they might develop thier software using existing lib's and such where as dependency issues come into play. Their software relies on others development to work right. If it were the case like in Windows where you install a program and most of its files and such pretty much install to one directory, its a little easier to link to as you tell it where to install, then it can make that link based on that.

If you think its so easy, why not create a program and make it so it creates these icons automatically for you. You'll develop it to work flawlessly on your system and then install it on a totally different system, using a totally different desktop, linux distro and what not and we'll see how well it does?

Maybe that is why some companies are wanting to make the LSB but yet others don't want to participate and just make their distro how they see fit..

Oh well..

Last edited by trickykid; 12-29-2003 at 06:02 PM.
 
Old 12-29-2003, 06:55 PM   #15
dukeinlondon
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Trickykid, you clearly have a problem with icons and reading is not your strong skill right ?. I am talking about various things in the post and just asking one question : why do you think that is ?

Please tick the "They think the great thing with Linux is that users sort themselves out" and let's move on !

Geeeee !

I
 
  


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