Can't configure setup.exe from CVS (and a plea for setup.exe alternative)

Gary R. Van Sickle g.r.vansickle@worldnet.att.net
Sat Dec 18 03:18:00 GMT 2004


> > Anyone know of a suitable, free setup-like utility that could be 
> > pressed into service for use with cygwin?
> http://www.jrsoftware.org/isinfo.php
> Fergus 
> 

I second that emotion.  InnoSetup absolutely rocks.

What I suspect you're unlikely to find in any of these however is piecemeal
installation of stuff over the network.  And I'd wager any amount not to
exceed $10 that none will ever have any sort of "Current/Prev/Experimental"
functionality.  Dependencies, I don't know.

How about this notion:  Every package has its own installer, e.g.
CygwinSetup.exe, BashSetup.exe, GCCSetup.exe, BinutilsSetup.exe, Perl...
Well, you get the idea.  I've gotten rather expert at InnoSetup
"metascripting" and could probably write a short perl script to
automatically build these from the existing packages.

But what to do about dependencies?  Off the top of my head:
1.  When A requires B and B isn't installed, running Asetup.exe croaks with
"You must install B first!".  Bad.
2.  When A requires B, Asetup.exe contains Bsetup.exe and installs it
automatically.  Huge files in some cases, probably conflicts, ick.
3.  If the setup builder does support install-on-demand over the network,
problem probably solved.

Pros:
- Versioning becomes less of an issue.  Every CygwinSetup-1.5.xxxx.exe can
be kept around forever if somebody wanted to (actually that's probably a
"con" in the long run....).  Actual exe/dll versioning gets handled by the
installer.
- Nobody gets confused.  InnoSetup installers are as standard as they come.

Cons:
- "I just installed all 2MB of CygwinSetup-1.xxx.exe, why can't I compile
anything?!?!?".
- Tons of xxxSetup.exe's floating around, with no "picker".  Maybe that's
acceptable though, if a web page(s) get autogenerated with links to the exe
and the description.

Just a notion, let 'er rip. ;-)

-- 
Gary R. Van Sickle


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