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Suite apps seriously out of date

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WiMax
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Suite apps seriously out of date

I've just downloaded and installed the suite. Now I find that every app is outdated so I am back and d/l every app and doing another install. I have bandwidth caps unfortunately. This has cost bandwidth (113Mb for suite plus 132Mb for updated apps). The suite should save time, not add to it.

Can the suite be updated to include the latest version of each app?

Zach Thibeau
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if we did that we would be

if we did that we would be pushing a new version of the suite almost every week. That's not very practical to be honest. It would take too much time to do that that we would not be able to update newer versions of the apps seperately.

your friendly neighbourhood moderator Zach Thibeau

Jake90087
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a waste of bandwith...

200 MB isn't really alot...well unless you have dial-up. I get unlimited bandwith

JT

m2
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For you, it isn't but for

For you, it isn't but for servers it's a different matter. In case of PA.com it would be many tera, possibly even a petabyte. Sounds different, doesn't it?

"Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do." Asimov

Sidewinder
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I understand what you're

I understand what you're saying - publishing a new version every week or so would be silly but why not add a message to the suite page saying the apps may be out of date so that people know what they're getting into?

Patrick Patience
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Good Point

You're right, I don't see any harm in adding a little note for more experienced users. However, for the average user the suite is quite, easy, and handy. Most people don't care about a couple point versions, which is what it is for the most part. I believe the only big issue right now is Firefox is still at version 2.0 in the suite. But perhaps we could add a note to the download page. I think the suite should be updated at least every couple of months, but John may have put this on hold as he is working on the next version of the menu, he's stuck with many other things to do, and he'll likely be adding some kinda of option to download applications after installing the main platform.

Mickeyj4j
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Hey i got a good idea.

This will help you alot. PortableApps.com Updater https://portableapps.com/node/16779. if this was taken further into a full app then everyone would be happy. You could include it in the suite and every one would be happy. Its one of the best apps I have had. run at least every 3 months is a good idea.

An Old Irish Blessing
May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind always be at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

MickeyJ4J

Ph4n70m
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.

IMHO we should get rid of "suite" and make a program where you can choose what will be downloaded and installed. Thas would be certainly better.

["ride" changed to "rid" for clarity by mod Tim, if not correct let me know and i will put it back Smile ]

SilentWalker
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.

hear, hear.

incognite
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agreed

PAM should be able to add/remove what you want just like windows and not only install things

solanus
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This is a very common complaint!

Personally, I think that JTH should remove the suites entirely, and just leave the PA Platform.

There IS an excellent solution, created by Marko:
THE PORTABLE APPS UPDATER!
https://portableapps.com/node/16779

This is an app that lets you select the apps you want to install or update, then it connects to SourceForge and downloads and installs them one at a time.

In my opinion, this is one of the most valuable apps created for PA - I'd like to see it go to full release, and it should be posted on the same page as the PA Platform.

I made this half-pony, half-monkey monster to please you.

Dagenham
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+1 :)

Absolutely. Quite a big pain in the ... to check every single piece of software, at least the PA Updater take care of the PA applications.

LOGAN-Portable
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Nowadays I totally agree that

Nowadays I totally agree that the 'full' suites should be dropped. Once I was for different (including a kitchen sink version) suites but reality is that it's almost impossible to maintain. Having people download 100s of MB's just to end up with outdated apps can be a turn off, and may also be a security risk because often updates are security based.

It's easy to remove the suites and leave the base installer plus add some info of how to get the apps for now as I don't see any new packages which include an updater coming any day soon.

I as many others started out downloading the biggest package but that only meant wasting (my) time and bandwidth.

Please, please look into this making PortableApps.com more user friendly without the 'need' to release a new version of the platform. It's a 'simple' and 'quick' fix that will help new users get the best out of PortableApps without sacrificing quality.

reepicheep
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+2 :)

I've argued in the past that including games in the full suite creates an unprofessinal/unbusiness-like appearance. Just having the basic suite to which individual users can add what they wish ... be it OpenOffice.org, Abiword, GNUcash, The GIMP, Scribus, Inkscape, or games ... would be more useful. Though the major product OpenOffice.org, Firefox, Thunderbird do not change very quickly. They might be considered for inclusion in a basic suite. But still it requires someone to be responsible for putting the suite together. Separating the menu off from everything else and devolving inclusion of everything to the user removes the need for a packaging role.

Chris Morgan
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Get real!

Whenever we have something like this, please read what the top guys here have to say, and read it well. Patrick Patience is pretty high up here, so listen to him:

Patrick Patience (#) However, for the average user the suite is quite, easy, and handy. Most people don't care about a couple point versions, which is what it is for the most part. I believe the only big issue right now is Firefox is still at version 2.0 in the suite. But perhaps we could add a note to the download page. I think the suite should be updated at least every couple of months, but John may have put this on hold as he is working on the next version of the menu, he's stuck with many other things to do, and he'll likely be adding some kinda of option to download applications after installing the main platform.

The Platform version 1.2 is due any time now, which'll take it up to date again.

Really, I'll be frank and honest - most people in this thread have been unreasonable, nasty, complainers. The Suite is marvellous for ordinary users - it gets them what they want in one simple file.

Having a "build-your-own-package-to-download" situation (like the Google Pack does it) is a nice idea, but an entirely impractical one. Such a thing requires either a pre-built option for each combination (which might be practical for the few apps in the Google Pack, when backed by a big company by Google) but is entirely impractical for us - even if we only allow the applications in our suite; that is 11 applications. The possible permutations of those (selecting between 1 and 11 items, inclusive) is 108,505,111 - try the maths of it if you like! All of our official apps number 59, I think; some quick maths says that the possible number of permutations with any number of items selected is 3.76979801056780291864e80. Impossible to make or store, obviously. Remember with all this that John does it in his spare time, and that money is a constraint.

The other option is to have a build farm to make up a custom build each time someone requests something, and possibly cache it for later use. Sorry guys, but we don't happen to have a spare million dollars - would you care to donate it?

I hope - but do not expect, really - that I have convinced you that a "select the apps you want" thing is just not really an option at all. It's only a valid option for after they've installed the platform. Then it can download individual apps. And again, you don't know a lot of what happens behind the scenes, but I know (because I listen) that this is coming. Have patience.

The PortableApps.com Updater is soon going to be part of the Suite. Be patient, and please stop acting like John's an idiot and doesn't know about these things. He knows more about all this sort of thing that probably all of you do together. If you read all that goes on here, you would also know what I've just said about it coming into the suite.

The full suite should not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, not, and if you still don't believe me, not be removed from our offerings. It is a convenient way of getting many things which will to most people be all they ever want. Refer back to Patrick's comment.

solanus (#) Personally, I think that JTH should remove the suites entirely, and just leave the PA Platform.

OK, I've addressed that.

solanus (#) There IS an excellent solution, created by Marko:
THE PORTABLE APPS UPDATER!
https://portableapps.com/node/16779

This is an app that lets you select the apps you want to install or update, then it connects to SourceForge and downloads and installs them one at a time.

In my opinion, this is one of the most valuable apps created for PA - I'd like to see it go to full release, and it should be posted on the same page as the PA Platform.

I've addressed that also. Please be aware though that there are really some pretty important defects with the whole fabric of the PortableApps.com Updater, which are just inbuilt limitations on NSIS. I think that it's these which are holding back its official release. I've got a vague suspicion that it may be being rewritten in a more suitable language, probably even integrated in the suite, maybe as early as the 2.0 release. But once more, please stop treating we who know what is going on - and especially John T. Haller, who has donated probably hundreds of thousands of dollars of his time to this project, and cares more about it than really anyone else does or can - as idiots; we know what's there, we know more about it than you do. Have patience and you will be rewarded. Don't have patience, and... you'll slow us down because we have to keep on writing responses to things like this, rather than getting on with our coding. For example, while I've been writing this, I could have been developing my PAFChecker for the best part of an hour...

I am a Christian and a developer and moderator here.

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

NathanJ79
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Compromise?

I also think that the Suite is a waste of time and space (but will concede that for newbies it's fine).

As a compromise, maybe it could be updated twice a year. It'll still always be a step or two behind on some things, but it'll stay relatively current. Ubuntu has a nice upgrade cycle - every April and October they release a new version. The Linux kernel may update, or GNOME or KDE, and you can get your updates with Synaptic (that's what it's called, right? it's been a while) in short order, but the next version will likely have them.

New versions aren't always essential, but I think Firefox is an exception to that rule. One of its biggest advantages over Redmond's offering is that it's open source, and problems get dealt with quicker than in IE. If PA.com continues to push an old version, they're undermining some of the benefits to using Firefox in the first place.

Chris MorganHaving a "build-your-own-package-to-download" situation (like the Google Pack does it) is a nice idea, but an entirely impractical one. Such a thing requires either a pre-built option for each combination (which might be practical for the few apps in the Google Pack, when backed by a big company by Google) but is entirely impractical for us - even if we only allow the applications in our suite; that is 11 applications. The possible permutations of those (selecting between 1 and 11 items, inclusive) is 108,505,111 - try the maths of it if you like! All of our official apps number 59, I think; some quick maths says that the possible number of permutations with any number of items selected is 3.76979801056780291864e80.

With respect, you're thinking too hard here. Two questions, because I'm not a programmer:

1. Does NSIS allow for downloading as an install step?
2. Do Sourceforge URLs change dynamically, e.g. to prevent hotlinking?

If the answers are yes and yes, here's how the platform might work that would make everybody happy.

The PA Menu is ~1MB downloaded. With a few extra scripts, it might jump to 1.1MB or even, on the outside, 1.5MB, though the latter is highly unlikely. (Again, IANAP, but I'm using what I consider to be a common sense interpretation of programming which may or may not be right but doesn't seem like it would be too far off.)

Right. So you install the platform, and as a last step, it asks you what, if any, apps you would like to load. It informs you that this requires an Internet connection and advises broadband. It would also give you the option to do this later, e.g. from a faster computer.

Microsoft Office's installer has a feature similar to what I'm thinking - the feature tree. The one that lists Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and under each you have help, and under that help for Wordperfect users; in addition to help you have stuff like converters, optimizers, etc. And then you get a quick description on the right. Do something like that.

First it would offer to and (if the user says yes) download an updated file. This would probably be 100KB at the most. Just a quick INI or whatever of all the apps, their descriptions, and the URL to the latest version.

Then you go to the feature tree as I described above. Yeah, I know PA.com isn't Microsoft, but that feature has got to be available in other installers. Now that I think on it, Pidgin (not portable) is open source and its installer has something similar.

Anyway, you check the apps you want. It connects to SourceForge, it downloads the apps' installers, it runs the installers, then it deletes the installers.

No hundreds of thousands of variations here at PA.com on the servers. Just business as usual, and the installer would (rather, could) merely emulate what the user would later do, in going out and getting the apps themselves.

And this would mean less strain on PA.com's servers, am I right? As opposed to the user coming to PA.com and reading the pages, they'd just pull the app straight from SourceForge's servers. It'd ease the strain on them (like, by a billionth of a percent) by not loading their Thank You page.

Now, granted, there is good information on PA.com, which leads me to another idea. For each app, code in a link under the Help menu to go to the portable application's page here on PA.com. This would also serve as a basic update checker as well. The app page here on PA.com links to the help forum as well, so that's a rather complete solution right there.

But then again, this would be a luxury feature; not at all necessary. And I would like to reiterate that I appreciate all the work that's put into these and other free open-source software projects. I sometimes wonder what Mozilla, PA.com, and others seek to gain by making their software (as opposed to profit, a la Microsoft), but I'm never not thankful for it. However...

Chris MorganDon't have patience, and... you'll slow us down because we have to keep on writing responses to things like this, rather than getting on with our coding. For example, while I've been writing this, I could have been developing my PAFChecker for the best part of an hour...

This doesn't fly too far with me, and I'd suspect others as well. I've sat down to a computer intending to do something - one example is I'm supposed to be working on a fork of a mod for a game I play, but haven't worked on it in a while. I'm pretty bad about it. I just end up doing other stuff. But you just can't blame the nature of the Internet (and forums specifically) for your own procrastination.

You (or at least I) come to forums mostly out of recreation; we have nobody to blame but ourselves for the time we spend here. The option to set it aside and go do something else is never made unavailable to us - it's our desire to be right, or to help others, or to just have fun, whatever the case may be (in your case, I think, to champion PortableApps; your posts generally represent a passion for what JTH is doing here) but in the end it's our choice to be up here.

Chris Morgan
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Responses

NathanJ79 (#)
As a compromise, maybe it could be updated twice a year. It'll still always be a step or two behind on some things, but it'll stay relatively current. Ubuntu has a nice upgrade cycle - every April and October they release a new version. The Linux kernel may update, or GNOME or KDE, and you can get your updates with Synaptic (that's what it's called, right? it's been a while) in short order, but the next version will likely have them.

We try to do better than that. Normally it should happen more than twice a year; sometimes however John's busy developing many things and managing the business and having a life... we don't have a big base like Ubuntu does.

NathanJ79 (#)
New versions aren't always essential, but I think Firefox is an exception to that rule. One of its biggest advantages over Redmond's offering is that it's open source, and problems get dealt with quicker than in IE. If PA.com continues to push an old version, they're undermining some of the benefits to using Firefox in the first place.

Whereas I don't really think that most of the minor updates to it are all that important. Ordinary users are unlikely to care much either.

NathanJ79 (#) With respect, you're thinking too hard here.

I was trying to bamboozle you Wink

NathanJ79 (#) Two questions, because I'm not a programmer:

1. Does NSIS allow for downloading as an install step?
2. Do Sourceforge URLs change dynamically, e.g. to prevent hotlinking?

If the answers are yes and yes, here's how the platform might work that would make everybody happy.

I presume that you mean yes and no. The answers are yes and no - look at how the PortableApps.com Updater does it. Having just confirmed with John two things which I expected, I can now say that the plan is to integrate the PortableApps.com Updater with the PortableApps.com Platform (which involves rewriting it in Delphi and integrating it) and that a fair bit of the current code of the PortableApps.com Updater will be merged into the Platform installer to do just what you're wanting.

NathanJ79 (#) Now, granted, there is good information on PA.com, which leads me to another idea. For each app, code in a link under the Help menu to go to the portable application's page here on PA.com. This would also serve as a basic update checker as well. The app page here on PA.com links to the help forum as well, so that's a rather complete solution right there.

This is on the roadmap for the Platform 2.0, where you right-click on each application and "Help" is an option, which'll load help.html, and "Homepage" which'll go to PortableApps.com/AppNamePortable (an alias to the app's homepage here).

NathanJ79 (#) But then again, this would be a luxury feature; not at all necessary. And I would like to reiterate that I appreciate all the work that's put into these and other free open-source software projects. I sometimes wonder what Mozilla, PA.com, and others seek to gain by making their software (as opposed to profit, a la Microsoft), but I'm never not thankful for it. However...

We enjoy it, it helps the community, we get to be famous Wink I don't know really why we do things like this, it just happens. I don't see anyone complaining that it happens though Blum

NathanJ79 (#) This doesn't fly too far with me, and I'd suspect others as well. I've sat down to a computer intending to do something - one example is I'm supposed to be working on a fork of a mod for a game I play, but haven't worked on it in a while. I'm pretty bad about it. I just end up doing other stuff. But you just can't blame the nature of the Internet (and forums specifically) for your own procrastination.

You (or at least I) come to forums mostly out of recreation; we have nobody to blame but ourselves for the time we spend here. The option to set it aside and go do something else is never made unavailable to us - it's our desire to be right, or to help others, or to just have fun, whatever the case may be (in your case, I think, to champion PortableApps; your posts generally represent a passion for what JTH is doing here) but in the end it's our choice to be up here.

Yeah, procrastination is always a problem with computers! Ah well. My aim here is to defend us from unreasonable demands and to explain what happens. Yes, I am very much involved in PortableApps.com. That may explain my bias.

I am a Christian and a developer and moderator here.

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

WiMax
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Who said you were idiots? We didn't

Chris; Have a rough weekend? NOBODY is calling you or anyone else at PA idiots. The forums are here to make suggestions. We are making suggestions, are we not? I simply pointed out that the suite apps are very out of date. It's not just my bandwidth but that of PA's, as well. I didn't realize it was a major chore to replace an old version with a new version of an app within the suite. You've explained it, great. Please don't accuse us things that we have not said or implied. We are here as part of the team, as well. And yes, we have bad days, too. I had a lousy day last Saturday after a simple app update almost totally disabled my work for a week.

> aim here is to defend us from unreasonable demands and to explain what happens.
> Yes, I am very much involved in PortableApps.com. That may explain my bias.

When you are doing something good, you don't have to defend yourself. IF I know I'm doing the right thing and someone puts me on the defensive, I ignore them.

Your bias is duly noted;-)

Please type slower, I can't keep up!

OH, CANADA! We stand on guard for thee!

reepicheep
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Not only out of date ...

WiMaxthe suite apps are very out of date.

And in the case of Firefox not only "out of date" but seriously compromised. The suites do not include the latest version of Firefox, either 2.0.20 or 3.0.6, which plugged critical security fixes in the mainline Firefox code.

Security fixes really should be included in the suite versions of the products.

Mickeyj4j
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Hi all

Some of you seem to forget that sometimes in life, The Good things take time. This is to ensure that things are done properly, perfected and of teh best quality they can be. its no good releasing something like Windows Vista, which for some people is just cant do what they need to so they revert back to XP.

Now John and the Team he put together to help with the New menu are doing there best to get teh next release out. so Be patient and wait till they have Got it right. there may already be a prerelease of out out there someware so look into that. Test it and help Improve it by posting feedback.

An Old Irish Blessing
May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind always be at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

MickeyJ4J

LOGAN-Portable
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Don't think there are

Don't think there are (public) pre-releases or maybe I missed it...

About Windows vista.... MS has put in some new graphics, slaps Windows 7 as a name and voila, a product that already has people holding their breath...

SilentWalker
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Actually its not

And don't get me wrong, because I hate Microsoft with a passion. Windows 7 was actually in development long before Vista, but MS was taking too long and could not meet a deadline so the just rebuilt XP and the NT shell and put together a elephant sized crap load which was given the fanciful name - Vista.

W7, however is supposed to be a whole load more stable, and is supposed to have a lot more compatibility for hardware and software alike. Many say that it's an incremental upgrade from Vista, but its nothing alike. They have the same look - GUI, but underneath the hood, it works differently.

Its like 2 black covered books, same size, same thickness, same smell, whatever; but beneath the cover of one may lie A and the other Z. Totally different. (My God!!! I sound like some cheesy philosopher!)

Hope that clears up the misconception,
Mikaeel.

NathanJ79
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Right, but

Right, but the thing is, the apps in question are already updated. People aren't pushing for a new update; they're merely suggesting that the Suite which is the platform plus a dozen or so apps should be updated with the current versions. That's all. The counter-argument is that if this were done often, well, it would take a lot of time to maintain. And the counter-counter-argument is that maybe it could be done just twice a year or something.

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