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- From: Warren Young <wyml at etr-usa dot com>
- To: cygwin-apps at cygwin dot com
- Date: Mon, 10 Aug 2015 12:41:52 -0600
- Subject: Re: setup
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On Aug 10, 2015, at 12:03 PM, Achim Gratz wrote:
>> There have been a bunch of attempts in the past at replacing
>> setup.exe. At least 3, that I can think of. All have fizzled.
> These were?
The Debian and Red Hat packaging systems have both been ported to Cygwin. Those could be used along with a bare-bones setup.exe to bootstrap Cygwin, after which setup.exe would no longer be needed.
Then there was a pretty GUI installer someone made many years ago; I believe we were still in the 1.5.x line at the time. I donât remember enough about it to find it via Google again, but I do remember a few posts to the mailing list with positive responses. Then the developer disappeared and no one took up the code base.
Thatâs part of what I mean about the difficulty of replacing key infrastructure. Without either a change at the core or an overwhelming attack from outside, there just isnât enough reason for someone to try to adopt something nonstandard. Without that user base, there isnât enough drive to continue development, so the project fizzles.
Consider the rise of Ubuntu-based Linuxes, replacing the various the RPM-based ones. That didnât happen purely because Ubuntu was âbetter.â A necessary part of this was Shuttleworth pouring millions of dollars from a really lucky IPO into the project.
As proof, consider all of the Ubuntu clones that have gone nowhere, despite being âbetterâ in some way.
The closest thing I can think of to success in the area you propose to tackle is mintty, which stepped into a gap between Windows Console and Cygwin/X + rxvt. It didnât try to replace either one, exactly, so it didnât have to succeed by first making the other disappear. âBetter and separateâ beats âbetter.â