The libstdc++5 dependency issues have been widely discussed and we’d like to improve the situation by the time of the 0.5 release.
Obviously we hope that XaraLX will eventually be included in all major Linux distributions, so users can easily download and install it using their system’s package manager. But even then there will presumably be a delay (weeks?) each time we release a new version, before the update is widely available via the package managers of each distribution.
So we need a way for users to download XaraLX (binary, not source) from our web site and to easily install it, along with dependencies. Right now we don’t have many (just libstdc++5) but that’s bound to change.
From what I’ve seen so far, even if we supply deb and rpm packages that know the dependencies, there is no simple way for users to install those packages in a way that satisfies any dependencies. On Ubuntu for example, I’d expect right-clicking or double clicking on a deb file to present an install option. What else am I likely to want to do with a deb file? But nothing useful is provided. Even Synaptic doesn’t allow installation of a deb file that you’ve already downloaded. And there doesn’t even seem to be a single command that will do the install job. dpkg will install a deb file, but will only complain about dependencies rather than do anything about them. And apt-get will auto-install dependencies, but won’t take a deb file!
Please let me know if I’m missing anything here.
On Fedora it’s better because “yum localinstall” seems to do the job, though it refuses to install rpm files that aren’t signed, without first tweaking it’s config.
One option I’m considering is providing just a shell script that users download from us and run. It would check the system type, then would use wget to download either an rpm or deb file as required. Then it would use combinations of dpkg, apt-get, yum, rpm, etc. to install the package plus dependencies.
Please let me know your thoughts and any attractive options that I’ve missed. And specifically:-
- Are dpkg and apt-get likely to be present and consistent on all debian based distributions?
- What about yum on rpm based systems?
- Could we rely on wget being present so we can smart-download the appropriate package type for a system from a single script?