[racket] Installer vs PPA (was: Graphics Issues in Ubuntu 11.10)

From: Todd O'Bryan (toddobryan at gmail.com)
Date: Mon Oct 17 22:24:40 EDT 2011

On Mon, Oct 17, 2011 at 10:14 PM, Eli Barzilay <eli at barzilay.org> wrote:
> A few minutes ago, Todd O'Bryan wrote:
>> On Mon, Oct 17, 2011 at 9:46 PM, Eli Barzilay <eli at barzilay.org> wrote:
>> > There's also our own installers, which are very easy to set
>> > up.  It's true that it won't get added as a known package in the
>> > system -- but OTOH, you can use the usual "whole-directory mode"
>> > where the whole thing is in a single directory.  If some of these
>> > machines share your home directory, and they're all running
>> > ubuntu, you can even put the racket directory in your home
>> > directory and cover more than a single machine.
>> >
>> I think I did this once or twice after compiling separately on each
>> machine for a few years and before the creation of the PPA. I can't
>> remember why I preferred compiling and building from scratch to the
>> binary installers, but there was some (probably nonsensical) reason.
> Well, IIUC, getting the PPA is also getting a precompiled directory,
> no?
> In any case, there shouldn't be any issues with using the installer.
>> Unfortunately, none of these machines share my home folder--school
>> firewalls and network wonkiness prevent that, so it really does
>> require separate installations. That makes the PPA's ability to
>> notice updates really nice.
> Out of curiosity: is there anyone else who uses the PPA (or similarly,
> people who use whatever Racket version is included with the
> distribution) just because of its ability to update itself when there
> is a new version?
> If there are other people who want just that, then I can probably
> extend the installer so that it will also install a script that will
> retrieve a new version and replace the installation directory with it.
> This can be as easy as remembering the answers to the questions that
> the installer ask in some file like ~/.racket/insaller-answers -- so
> after you install it once, running a newer installer will use the
> previous answers automatically.
> (My impression was that people just want the OS package because they
> don't want anything outside of the package system, I didn't think
> about the auto-upgrade as a factor.)

Be careful, though. I sudo install in a directory non-admins don't
have access to, so trying to install a newer version whenever any user
runs DrRacket and a newer version is available would create bunches of
dialog boxes all over my lab, mostly on the screens of people who
can't actually do anything about upgrading.

That said, what you're suggesting would be nice.

I don't know about other people, but the major reason that I prefer
the package system is two-fold: dependency resolution and
auto-upgrading. If you can handle those two problems, I don't care how
or where you get installed. (OK, it would be nice to have file icons,
a menu entry, and have double-clicking .rkt files know to use
DrRacket, but I have to do those manually, now.)


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