[lsb-discuss] [packaging] RFC: Berlin Packaging API

Sam Hart criswellious at gmail.com
Thu Feb 28 07:01:57 PST 2008

On Thu, Feb 28, 2008 at 9:25 AM, Dan Kegel <dank at kegel.com> wrote:
> <robert.schweikert at mathworks.com> wrote:
>  >  ISVs MUST have the option to let their customers
>  >  install an application without root access.
>  >
>  >  Being able to tell the underlying system what is being installed and
>  >  where it is being installed is a convenience for the user and/or the
>  >  system administrator.
>  Apps that are installed without root access should not
>  be announced to the package manager.  I must not be
>  understanding what you're saying.
>  - Dan

I think in the situations where the app is installed to a user's home
directory (or some
other place where they have write access), it wouldn't be appropriate
to force that
information into the underlying package management system (in fact, it
could be a
pretty glaring security issue if you did allow non-privileged users a
backdoor like this
into the package management system).

But I don't think that was the point Robert was driving at.

I think the *real* issue is that most ISVs want this non-privileged
local install *as an
option* in the installer. E.g., if the user doesn't have root access
on the machine, the
installer (in whatever form it is in) has to be able to suggest or
accept a local install.

I think what Robert was saying is that ISVs simply supplying an RPM or
a DPKG isn't
going to solve the problems that they see. It's not going to allow for
flexibility  in the
installer, it wont allow for fancy GUI license screens that *many*
ISVs want, and it
certainly wouldn't allow them to have *one* installer code-base that
is used on every
platform they support (be it Win32, Solaris, Mac OS, Linux, etc.)

Personally, I do agree that the "Right Way(tm)" would be just to
provide native packages,
but that's simply not going to happen. And if it's not going to
happen, some simple hooks
into the underlying package management system would be really helpful for cross-
platform installers (like InstallShield and its ilk)

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