Custom web browser protocol to install from apt-get

Jamie Jones hentai_yagi at
Fri Mar 24 14:19:49 GMT 2006

On Thu, 2006-03-23 at 16:58 +0100, John Nilsson wrote:
> On Thu, 2006-03-23 at 00:14 +0300, Arwyn Hainsworth wrote:
> > IMHO They shouldn't have to know how they are for them to be able to
> > forget it. Users need to know how to _do_ things, not how they work.
> > As far as users are concerned even the most complex task should be a
> > simple set of buttons to press to get what he (or she) wants working.
> > Of course security must be taken into account every step of the way,
> > but a user should _never_ be forced to use the console for something
> > as simple as installing 3rd party software. 
> A simple solution to this problem is to take away even the console
> possibility. If the ONLY way to get a package installed is through an
> Ubuntu approved repository, third party vendors would HAVE to go through
> the proper channels to make their software available to Ubuntu users.
> Now, this isn't very friendly for developers or users who absolutely
> have to override Ubuntu policies. But this might be solvable in a manner
> better suited for this class of users.

You are right, this isn't friendly. That makes things very annoying for
me and possibly others too eg, I maintain a relatively popular 3rd party
repo. It's not yet ready for Ubuntu, but is a relatively stable product
(details in my sig under community projects).

While I actively provide support for my packages, I'm aware that others
do not, or can not. I don't think that taking away the ability to
install third party software is a good idea. There are already a few
steps involved that already cause trouble for those that can't be
bothered to pay attention to their new system, and I think they should
shoot themselves in the foot. They would do the same on Win or Mac, so
let them make their mistakes and learn the hard way. I've touched on
security before, so I won't do it again here.

Synaptic does let you add other repositories, so unless someone is only
offering .debs, not a repo, (and possibly without source), command line
installation isn't needed, and even then a tool was developed for dapper
that should take care of that.

Personally, I think our efforts are better spent trying to get the third
party .debs integrated into Ubuntu, by perhaps getting their creators to
join the motu, or at least, as I do, try to collaborate with them. The
problem I see, is a lot of third party .debs seem to be checkinstall
jobs ie they are not a real .deb package, they can't be built on other
arches, and can't be maintained. This doesn't even begin to cover the
non .deb software people want to install.

Do we even have a guide to all the wonderful software we already have in
main, restricted, universe and multiverse ? Perhaps it would be good to
show that to (new) users.

Jamie Jones
E-Yagi Consulting
ABN: 32 138 593 410
Mob: +61 4 16 025 081
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