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gandalf

Smart Packer - Multi platform installer (Windows, Mac en ...)

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We have some ideas about developing a multi-platform installer and would like to know if there is enough interest for such a tool.

 

The product packs a complete folder into one single file. When the single file is started a customizable menu is shown so the main exe can be launched.

 

spinstaller.png

 

Files are extracted during run-time to a temporary unique folder and run from there. After processing the files are stored in a encrypted archive.

 

Features:

- Multi-platform (Windows & Mac & Linux*)

- Customizable menu (background image and text)

- Background sound

- Uninstall with one click

- Update functionality

- Optional password protection

 

*Linux support is under investigation, if possible it will be added as feature (for free)

 

To fund the development of this tool we are considering pre-ordering and/or crowdfunding.

 

Please let us know your thoughts and/or opinion.

 

Thank you!

 

Smart Packer Solutions

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If it could feature a launcher+auto-updater (may be a small sized initial downloader, like many games do) I'd find it very useful, and I could suggest it to my customer for our current project (not LE related). I see few installer+updater product out there with similar functionalities but way too much priced to be affordable for an indie.

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I would think this would be direct competition with LE. Who is currently crowdfunding linux support.

LE is a rendering/game engine while he's talking about an installer, where is the competition? Competition is about products, not money source

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Zio im more thinking the "multi-installer" in terms of you have a Windows/Mac lincense but this software could port it to work on Linux as part of it's process when you dont have a license - ie competiting with josh

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but this software could port it to work on Linux

 

Uhm sorry im not to deep in linux dev but as far as i know you cant "port" some code automatically with a tool. Linux executables, dll's and librarys (i know they called different) work different to windows.

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Zio im more thinking the "multi-installer" in terms of you have a Windows/Mac lincense but this software could port it to work on Linux as part of it's process when you dont have a license - ie competiting with josh

You cannot "port" LE Windows to Linux, I don't know if LE currently works on WINE but in that case you'd be ALREADY able, though the LE Linux campaign is to create the native editor and (I suppose) library to build a native game client and not a WINE-compatible. This is a generic software so you don't even need a LE license at all. Isn't this section "Off-topic"? So since this is not showcasing a competitor engine but a sider software related also to game development (but also for any kind of software).... :-)

 

@ZioRed: thank you for the suggestion. What would be an affordable Indie price for you?

I don't know what the others think, but I personally would buy a product like that at something between 60 and 100 EUR per single developer (I don't know how you're thinking about multiplatform there, I mean if you'd have a price for singular platform or all-in-one), of course you know the lesser price the better chance you'll have to intercept hobbyists besides indies. But you'll need to listen to others' opinions too, I could also be thinking differently so just spread the voice over the internet and choose by average ;-)

 

About customization, I think it would be nice to customize every aspect of the interface, may be with some XML similar to XAML, so the developer could have the chance to define windowed-size/fullscreen, strings/background-images/positions for the default buttons, progress bar style (or its background/foreground images), and maybe even add custom buttons and text.

 

About the auto-updater feature it should be as generic as possible, allowing to build a list of files to update (binary diff) or add from the list of files from the server. The list on the server could be for example in a XML file on the server with all the necessary data, included maybe a computed hash for the binary diff to avoid realtime computing on the server for every client (in this case you should provide a library to compute the hash for a file or a small software tool to build the complete XML from a list of files, which the developer will upload [even manually, no matters] to the web server together with the files themselves). Take care that of course the files to be added/updated could reside in different subfolders of the installed path, like it's usually for others than the main exe.

 

I was building such auto-updater myself for my customer's project (but with a PHP webapp too, for example to create zip package at runtime with all the files needed to be updated/added for each client request to decrease the download time/size), but I had to idle it for now (too much work on other stuff at this moment), that's why I was searching the web about something similar and above all multiplatform (our game will be for Windows, Mac and Linux).

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You cannot "port" LE Windows to Linux, I don't know if LE currently works on WINE but in that case you'd be ALREADY able, though the LE Linux campaign is to create the native editor and (I suppose) library to build a native game client and not a WINE-compatible. This is a generic software so you don't even need a LE license at all. Isn't this section "Off-topic"? So since this is not showcasing a competitor engine but a sider software related also to game development (but also for any kind of software).... :-)

 

 

No idea how LE3 works under Wine, but LE 2 always worked fine under Wine. BlitzMax and Code Blocks executables worked more or less every time. Visual Studio executables required the 3 visual studio runtime DLLs to be present (msvcm90.dll msvcp90.dll msvcr90.dll), either in the same directory (preferred), or in Wine's system32 directory, which I believe is usually found in ~/.wine/dosdevices/c:/windows/system32

 

 

Chances are, any LE 3 project created with VS2010 will need the 2010 version of the DLLs before Wine will even touch it. Most Linux users don't like installing the Visual Studio runtimes.

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@MikeClark: this tool is a generic installer tool for games and applications

 

@ZioRed: thank you for the suggestions!

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Thanks i wasn't quite sure whether you were going generic or if it was specifically the sale of a port system ie a compressed system similar to wine to allow a all-in-one linux port/install - which is v.difficult but would explain your investigating reason.

 

@Zio: Thanks I was unsure since it said multiplatform if it was referring to optional install package A (windows) package B (linux) of it was more package A (windows) package b (basic wine like system + package a) etc.

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I have SmartPacker which is a great product, expanding it would be good. Crowd funding through Kickstarter seems to be the way. I would back it.

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Linux users don't like installing the Visual Studio runtimes.

Most linux-users won't even think about letting WINE anywhere near their system.

 

 

Installation software is uncommon and rarely used under GNU/Linux (package mangers excluded), since we have shiny tools such as pkgtool and yum. A system-wide package manager is superior to any 3rd-party installation software and using 3rd-party software for this usually ends in a giant mess (i.e. they throw *all* their stuff in /usr, /var or who knows where; they install their **** in random locations, install unwanted stuff, produce binary mess, etc.).

 

I heard that especially Autodesk is very good in messing with your system.

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