A while back, I wrote about a system called Autopackage, which attempted to solve some of the problems with software installation on Linux. I had some praise and a few criticisms of the project, and some of the autopackage people came by and discussed some of them. I still get new comments on that post every so often, mostly of the “if you don’t like autopackage, don’t use it” variety.
Autopackage has attracted a lot more criticism over time, and it seems that criticism has driven at least one autopackage person completely batty. Apparently, nearly everything violates their idea of how the world should work: package managers, Python, C++, the standard C library, the ELF executable file format, and the dynamic linker, at least.
The whole incident is frustrating. Autopackage does some things well. Their efforts to solve binary compatibility problems, for example, have resulted in some seriously cool utilities. But they seem to have an inflated opinion of themselves, and it closes their minds to working with others. With me, it was the idea that distributor support could possibly be desireable for users. This seemed to be a totally alien concept to them
I do want to emphasize Klik, though (from Erich’s link). It appears to solve many of the same problems, but without insisting that the entire software infrastructure behind Linux adapt to it.
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