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Old 05-14-2006, 05:59 AM   #1
J_K9
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Commercial Linux applications and distributing them


Hi,

I have supported Open Source projects in the past, but I have never paid for a commercial Linux application. So, I have a question for all of you who have done the latter - how is the application distributed? I'm assuming that the source code would not be available (because it's proprietary software), so that rules compiling from source out. Also, specific package types (like deb, rpm, etc) can be reverse engineered to reveal the source code, so I'm assuming it is not distributed like that either.

So, my question is: how is it distributed?

Thanks,

-jk
 
Old 05-14-2006, 07:01 AM   #2
cs-cam
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Quote:
Also, specific package types (like deb, rpm, etc) can be reverse engineered to reveal the source code
Eh, what?

All packages (deb, rpm, autopackage, etc..) are just fancy archives. The not even being the point though, almost all packages are distributed in binary form so how do you reverse engineer the source of that? Not easily or accurately if it's a C or C++ app I can tell you and that would be what most proprietary apps are written in.

RPM seems to be a pretty popular distrobution format, Cedega is available in RPM, deb and tgz so that covers the major distros (RPM & deb) and the tgz is actually a Slackware package but could easily be converted into a package for almost any distro.
 
Old 05-14-2006, 07:17 AM   #3
J_K9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cs-cam
Eh, what?
Sorry, I was thinking in terms of source packages.

Sorry, I've confused myself. Thanks for reminding me though

 
Old 05-14-2006, 08:58 AM   #4
cs-cam
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No problem, last week I was ready to kill qmail because it wouldn't let me log in. Would have helped a lot if I tacked the domain on after my username but hey, not thinking straight

Just look at how other commercial apps are distributed. For example, I've already said how Cedega is packaged, maybe have a look at how VMWare releases are packages. There is Firefox (open source, I know) but the binary version has a Windows-style installer. There is also the half/half solution that ID Software have devised where the Quake engines are available under the GPL but the game content is not. This could alternately work in a way where a program is distributed freely under the GPL but content you wish to make available to users is stored online and they must pay a fee to access it.

There are a million ways to structure a commercial app in an open source environment and a great way to get some attention would be a innovative distrobution method. Be creative

Last edited by cs-cam; 05-14-2006 at 09:00 AM.
 
Old 05-14-2006, 09:28 AM   #5
J_K9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cs-cam
No problem, last week I was ready to kill qmail because it wouldn't let me log in. Would have helped a lot if I tacked the domain on after my username but hey, not thinking straight
Hehe, I know the feeling
Quote:
There is Firefox (open source, I know) but the binary version has a Windows-style installer.
Oh, yes. And I think it's a similar case with Sun's JRE?

Thanks for the examples - I'm getting a better idea of how it works now. The reason I asked the question in the first place was because I was wondering what might be delaying software companies from adapting their applications to work on Linux. There's obviously the single-platform issue, as well as the amount of people using Linux who actually want the application - but for some reason I thought the packages thing might have something to do with it. Must be the early Sunday wake-up which had me going

Thanks
 
  


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