Author Topic: OS2VOICE RPM Server  (Read 2437 times)

Martin Iturbide

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OS2VOICE RPM Server
« on: February 19, 2018, 02:27:01 pm »
Hi

I talked with Roderick about his idea of having a RPM repository for OS2VOICE that will include OS/2 software (freeware/shareware new and old).  Roderick just gave a condition that he will not host any software that violate any regulation such as copyright laws (The server is located in the Netherlands and Dutch laws applies).

I found it interesting to have a different way to present software to the community in a way that can be downloaded and installed as simple as possible. I also think that the Netlabs RPM repository should not be used for all kind of OS/2 software, so I think it is a good idea to have a different server for it.  But I also think we need more resources on how the community can help creating RPM packaged for their favorite OS/2 software. For the moment I have personally failed creating my first package, but it is something that I need to try harder. But more samples, tutorials and specific information on how to create RPM packaged will be welcome.

So please let me know if you would like to sign in for the OS2VOICE RPM idea (and help with some RPM packaged) and if there are any doubts or things that need to be defined.

If you dislike RPM and don't want to help at all, there is no need to reply.

Regards

Martin Iturbide
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Dave Yeo

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2018, 09:35:11 pm »
Hi,
As we seem to be committed to using RPM now, the idea of a OS2VOICE rpm server seems good. There are programs such as FFmpeg that have many dependencies and could really benefit from a package manager as well as many programs where installation could be simplified by using RPM. OTOH, long range plans for ANPM include better support of WPI packages allowing them to co-exist better with rpm, so no need to totally drop Warpin.
Problems come from what exactly are the Dutch (and EU I guess) regulations. Copyright is complex enough with different jurisdictions having not quite compatible copyright laws. eg, a bunch of stuff just entered the public domain here in Canada, but in many jurisdictions, including the States, they're still under copyright. There's also differences in what can be copyrighted, some places a recipe can be copyrighted and others, not. Same with headers, their copyright status is not clear and is likely to vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and without a court case can be really unclear.
Then there are corner cases such as the discussion on cdrecord where strictly speaking, it seems copyright is being broken by distributing Froloff's patched cdrecord without source so no GPL licence. There's lots of stuff on Hobbes that likewise is probably a copyright violation but as long as the authours don't complain, it is fairly harmless.
More important when talking about multimedia applications in particular are patents. A lot of this stuff is patented and American law, as an example, is pretty strict in enforcement, as well as pretty liberal in what can be patented. I have no idea what the Dutch (and EU) regulations are on these patents and I'm not even sure about my country.
Debian, for example, gets around these problems by having non-free repositories hosted in safe countries, same with projects such as MPlayer. Then there is lame, which simply only distributes source code as it seems it takes a binary to infringe. This also opens up the possibility to compile some software on the users machines to work around these problems.

Last, but not least, is with an expanding number of repositories, is keeping them in sync to avoid RPM hell.

Dave Yeo

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2018, 09:40:22 pm »
I'll add that personally, I'm planning on trying to learn how to build rpm's and contribute to the OS2VOICE repository, time and my capabilities willing.

Andreas Schnellbacher

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2018, 11:00:35 pm »
There are programs such as FFmpeg that have many dependencies and could really benefit from a package manager as well as many programs where installation could be simplified by using RPM.
I think, I have an interesting case, regarding pro RPM or not. Even when one doesn't suspect any relation, RPM can benefit NEPMD, an addition to the system tool EPM:

In NEPMD, I've added several functions that require external tools. These tools were usually not compiled with VAC, nor EMX, but with GCC and Knut's k stuff. Tools, to be used by NEPMD are: md5sum, lxlite, kDiff3, gfc, recode, uconv, pmprintf.

Note that gfc, recode and pmprintf are the only ones that are not available as an RPM package. The situation has changed extremely, compared to when I had implemented the recode support.

Using RPM packages (via YUM or ANPM) eases the use of these tools and also will make it easy for me to document how to get them. I even think about providing an (still) alternative RPM package beside the WPI.

Andreas Schnellbacher

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #4 on: February 19, 2018, 11:08:34 pm »
I don't like the idea of another RPM server. netlabs.org just works and why should it be made more complicate to find a package? Do we expect masses of new packages beside those being already made available on netlabs.org?

If people (or VOICE) like(s) to host those stuff additionally, why not. But the main rep. should remain on netlabs.org, like Hobbes is the server for all others.

Roderick Klein

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2018, 11:18:33 pm »
Hi,
As we seem to be committed to using RPM now, the idea of a OS2VOICE rpm server seems good. There are programs such as FFmpeg that have many dependencies and could really benefit from a package manager as well as many programs where installation could be simplified by using RPM. OTOH, long range plans for ANPM include better support of WPI packages allowing them to co-exist better with rpm, so no need to totally drop Warpin.
Problems come from what exactly are the Dutch (and EU I guess) regulations. Copyright is complex enough with different jurisdictions having not quite compatible copyright laws. eg, a bunch of stuff just entered the public domain here in Canada, but in many jurisdictions, including the States, they're still under copyright. There's also differences in what can be copyrighted, some places a recipe can be copyrighted and others, not. Same with headers, their copyright status is not clear and is likely to vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and without a court case can be really unclear.
Then there are corner cases such as the discussion on cdrecord where strictly speaking, it seems copyright is being broken by distributing Froloff's patched cdrecord without source so no GPL licence. There's lots of stuff on Hobbes that likewise is probably a copyright violation but as long as the authours don't complain, it is fairly harmless.
More important when talking about multimedia applications in particular are patents. A lot of this stuff is patented and American law, as an example, is pretty strict in enforcement, as well as pretty liberal in what can be patented. I have no idea what the Dutch (and EU) regulations are on these patents and I'm not even sure about my country.
Debian, for example, gets around these problems by having non-free repositories hosted in safe countries, same with projects such as MPlayer. Then there is lame, which simply only distributes source code as it seems it takes a binary to infringe. This also opens up the possibility to compile some software on the users machines to work around these problems.

Last, but not least, is with an expanding number of repositories, is keeping them in sync to avoid RPM hell.

When it comes to copyright infringement I can not distribute for example distribute the OS/4 kernel, sorry guys.
But I can for example also not distribute IBM works repackaged, to just name an example.  While IBM no longer distributes this...

However we can distribute open source software or trial versions of software. For example we could consider repacking Bluecad as an RPM. Its as freeware on hobbes...

When it comes to softwarepatents:  While recently the climate has become  better I think. the United States sucks when it comes to software patents and patent trolls. That said, I see that recent rulings from the US Supreme court have made life of patent trolls a lot harder.  But there is still a long way to go...

The European Union seems to be a cross roads when it comes to software patents. But it seems we are not going down the insane road the US went threw with software patents. But these are uncertain times. That said I find the legal system in the Netherlands a lot better to prevent so called patent trolls from sending out these "license or see you in court letters".

Lastly the VOICE foundation is poor, we have about 10.000 Dollars in the bank currently. So why would anybody sue us. The board members are not liable personally but we should do anything extremely stupid.

So I hope that kind of clears up the atmosphere. The RPM will however also not be a click and upload...
I still need 1 or 2 people that can help with testing RPM package made. I want to be certain they work :-)
I have not yet written a complete policy document as time after time I did not even get 1 RPM to upload myself ready or from somebody else.

What I do think is important is that we bundle everything in one repo next to the Netlabs repo.

I hope that answers some of the questions.

Roderick Klein
President OS/2 VOICE...

Roderick Klein

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2018, 11:24:56 pm »
I don't like the idea of another RPM server. netlabs.org just works and why should it be made more complicate to find a package? Do we expect masses of new packages beside those being already made available on netlabs.org?

If people (or VOICE) like(s) to host those stuff additionally, why not. But the main rep. should remain on netlabs.org, like Hobbes is the server for all others.

I have no in tension to replace the RPM repo at Netlabs.  However I know server Netlabs is short on space and the RPM server on which the repo would be running has 3.5 TB of storage left...

Roderick

Roderick Klein

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2018, 11:35:27 pm »
Hi

I talked with Roderick about his idea of having a RPM repository for OS2VOICE that will include OS/2 software (freeware/shareware new and old).  Roderick just gave a condition that he will not host any software that violate any regulation such as copyright laws (The server is located in the Netherlands and Dutch laws applies).

I found it interesting to have a different way to present software to the community in a way that can be downloaded and installed as simple as possible. I also think that the Netlabs RPM repository should not be used for all kind of OS/2 software, so I think it is a good idea to have a different server for it.  But I also think we need more resources on how the community can help creating RPM packaged for their favorite OS/2 software. For the moment I have personally failed creating my first package, but it is something that I need to try harder. But more samples, tutorials and specific information on how to create RPM packaged will be welcome.

So please let me know if you would like to sign in for the OS2VOICE RPM idea (and help with some RPM packaged) and if there are any doubts or things that need to be defined.

If you dislike RPM and don't want to help at all, there is no need to reply.

Regards

Thanks for supporting this effort Martin. I hope my other question kind of answers the legal questions.
I certainly think we can distribute a media player for example in RPM format.

Here is an example of what I bumped in recently. People like Paul Smedley port a lot of software but we rather have him port code then make installation programs and or instructions.

Gerrit Schoenmaker from the Dutch OS/2 user group. He contacted me and asked how to get TAME working with his USB scanner. As it turns out the USBCALLS.DLL was outdated and installing the ArcaOS broke the SANE support.
Paul had build a version of SANE that should fix that. I think the URL was once mentioned on os2world.com.
How would it if the TAME database and SANE updates could be in RPM as well. Update click install...
Now for Gerrit its a job to figure what to get where etc...

One thing suggested at Sigurd Fastenrath his usergroup meeting in Cologne Germany was to introduce a small box to ask for donations. For for example Paul Smedley (if you download something from him).

Plenty of ways to get more movement in the community with this project... This would be a killer app if just like with LInux it would be EASIER to upgrade and install software...

Roderick

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2018, 05:22:49 pm »
Roderick, using your Tame example are you saying that there would be just ONE rpm file that contains EVERYTHING necessary for running Tame with a USB scanner or would we need to download several rpm files?

If it is the first then a simple WPI, like the original Tame distribution should suffice and the WPI database would also be updated.

If it is the second then we are seeing a basic change to OS/2.  By that I mean using rpm is forcing a file system layout that is foreign to OS/2 to try and work with the basic OS/2 file system so things may or may not work depending on the bldlevel of the various components.

In engineering we tend to call such radical changes a solution looking for a problem to solve. 

Martin Iturbide

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2018, 06:05:28 pm »
Hi.

I agree with the main idea and offer a different way to access and install OS/2 software. It will not be forcing people to use RPM, but just having an alternative, and of course there are components that it may be hard to install with RPM and should not be there.

For example, I really want to see if I can put some OS/2 games together on the RPM server and try to solve the issue that the most modern games embedded different versions of the SDL DLLs files. So it may be interesting to test and try those games with the latest SDL DLLs.

I don't think using RPM for OS/2 applications will be a "Problem waiting to happen" or a "radical change" (some exceptions may apply). I just think we should evaluate the rpm package individually before jumping into the "fear wagon". And the one that does not like it, just don't use it and keep getting and installing the software as they like.

Regards
Martin Iturbide
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Roderick Klein

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2018, 11:46:25 pm »
Roderick, using your Tame example are you saying that there would be just ONE rpm file that contains EVERYTHING necessary for running Tame with a USB scanner or would we need to download several rpm files?

If it is the first then a simple WPI, like the original Tame distribution should suffice and the WPI database would also be updated.

If it is the second then we are seeing a basic change to OS/2.  By that I mean using rpm is forcing a file system layout that is foreign to OS/2 to try and work with the basic OS/2 file system so things may or may not work depending on the bldlevel of the various components.

In engineering we tend to call such radical changes a solution looking for a problem to solve.

Its one example of where RPM is useful. What makes Warpin not use full is that RPM has a system to check on dependency of packages *and* download the required packages. With Warpin the customer needs to go to *a* website and download the package. Also an updated RPM package is around can ANPM (RPM) can download this.  Warpin can not do this... I like Warpin but it simply lacks a couple of features a lot of end users need.

With the limited human resources I think WPI files are not the solution for the OS/2 community to keep moving forward. When Warpin was developed it was great and a lot of software was distributed with the IBM installer.
The IBM installer is not used a lot anymore. I see to many people at Warpstocks and the Dutch OS/2 user group that can not find software or know how to install it or keep easily keep track of updates. That is why I see people installing dual boot updates with Linux distro's that do provide this functionality.

For me the discussion about the directory structure that RPM puts in place. In fact maybe people like Paul Smedley could get MORE feedback if software could be installed and updated... The people in this forum might know how to keep track of DLL's and everything but enough OS/2 users do not...

Or did I misunderstand your posting ?

Roderick

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #11 on: February 21, 2018, 12:56:26 am »
There is work being done to integrate warpin support into ANPM, which will help.
The real problems are,
One, not all software translates into the @UNIXROOT directory structure. eg BASEDEV's that have to go in x:\os2 or x:\os2\boot.
Two, RPM hell. This is already hinted at in this thread. Different programs requiring different versions of usbcalls.dll. Different games requiring different versions of SDL. Ideally everything would be recompiled after libraries are fixed/merged. In practice we don't have source code for everything and our systems DLL support is crap. In Linux land, shared libraries can be versioned and symlinked and even the symbols inside can be versioned. Programs can also be compiled/marked to use specific libraries. We're stuck with our 1980's era DLL structure.
Three, packages need to be maintained, recompiled against newer libraries and such, which takes manpower. There are lots of warpin packages that are no longer maintained.
In short, RPM has its uses, especially for software ported from *nix land. Warpin has its uses as well, especially for software that doesn't easily lend itself to the *nix file structure or even stuff that needs some rewriting.
As an example, I seem to be maintaining the screensaver, right now building it and packaging it as a warpin is simple as all the scripts are there and it expects to live in its own directory. It could be converted into an RPM and installed somewhere like @UNIXROOT/usr/lib/dss but I'd rather do other stuff when the WPI works well. With our shortage of manpower, there's probably lots of packages like this.

Andreas Schnellbacher

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2018, 01:01:30 am »
What makes Warpin not use full is that RPM has a system to check on dependency of packages *and* download the required packages.
IMO a more relevant disadvantage is that automated uninstall isn't possible, but has to be done manually instead. WarpIN was designed as just an installation program. What we need is a package manger. RPM together with YUM is currently the only available option for us. To raise WarpIN to that state, too much work has to be done.

Andreas Schnellbacher

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #13 on: February 21, 2018, 01:10:18 am »
There is work being done to integrate warpin support into ANPM, which will help.
It would. But unfortunately, we're years away from adding that functionality to WarpIN's wic.exe, that's needed. It's doable, but it doesn't seem to happen soon. Adding an uninstall mode to wic.exe would be an important feature. Moreover, re-enabling WarpIN REXX scripts to access the database would be another one. Otherwise changing existing database entries (in case of an upgrade) won't be possible without uninstall and new install.

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Re: OS2VOICE RPM Server
« Reply #14 on: February 21, 2018, 09:03:37 am »
a more relevant disadvantage [to WarpIn] is that automated uninstall isn't possible, but has to be done manually instead.

WIC has long been able to do an automated uninstall, but people always thought you needed to have the original WPI available, so no one bothered to use that feature. However, that isn't the case.

Last week, I developed a way to have WIC uninstall a WPI using a dummy package that's only a few kb in size. Currently, the developer (not the user) must have the original WPI available to create the fake WPI. As I write this, it occurs to me that it may be possible to create the uninstall package by taking info directly from the WarpIn database. If so, then no one would need the original WPI. We'll see...