[Marketing] [SoaS] links from homepage to Downloads page

Peter Robinson pbrobinson at gmail.com
Tue Feb 5 05:29:41 EST 2013

>> We already have that as you can boot the ISO off both virtual and
>> physical platforms and it has the same installer. It would be cool if
>> someone could do a patch that gives the install and icon either on the
>> wheel or in the control panel that says "install me".
> What I'm aiming for is an application with some text, a progress bar
> and a single button. People do not RTFM and they shouldn't have to.

Yea, I'd love that too, I think you'll find most distributions would
love that and would already have that if it was possible. Generally
and unfortunately this isn't the case (and if you know of a platform
that offers that do let me know) adding in virtualisation and ARM
technologies will only make this worse. This is why we've never
officially supported VM images because people don't understand the
differences. We generally even just make the 32 bit the default option
too because of this.

Ultimately we should be offering a "buy a usb key with SoaS ready to
go" option for the people that don't RTFM so that they can just let
their credit card do their thinking because a single click option will
unfortunately cause as many problems as it fixes.

>>>     * Single click application which download and writes the latest sugar image
>>>         * On a USB stick
>>>         * On a SD for the Raspberry
>> There's live USB creator here which does the USB stick quite well, it
>> wouldn't be hard to add support for the RPi but someone would need to
>> add the support.
>> http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/How_to_create_and_use_Live_USB
> I know about live USB creator but, as above, I'm aiming for a single
> click application.

See my description above, it doesn't currently exist.

>>> * Setup a web site which allows to access a sugar instance via novnc,
>>> for evaluation.
>> Who's going to pay for the hosting of that?
> I guess it depends on the number of "seats" we will require for this
> to be useful (if it's always busy it would just be frustrating). If
> it's matter of a few seats, I think it's worth for sugarlabs to
> provide it on the servers we are already running.

Look at the thread on marketing between Sean and Bernie about shutting
down the google apps instance due to lack of time. If the infra team
don't have time to deal with something like that it's extremely
unlikely they'll have the time, interest or infrastructure to run what
is essentially a VDI platform.

>> What about platform security?
> Are you thinking of any issue in particular? I can think of a few but
> nothing unsolvable.

I can think of a lot. My day job is for enterprise hosting and I deal
with this sort of thing every day. What you're requesting is
essentially a VDI platform and there's a lot of things that need to be
dealt with. Every single platform of this type I've ever deployed (and
we're talking in the 100s of thousands of seats) sits behind VPN
platforms.... if you think selecting a few options to create a USB
stick is too hard for users getting them to setup a vpn will make that
look like a walk in the park!

>>> * Make a list of linux distributions with recent/well working
>>> packages, which can be installed from the official repos.
>> Fedora does and it's the same package set used on the OLPCs
> Yup, I actually fear Fedora might be the only distro we can put on
> that list but we need to find out. Anyway the point is that the
> current downloads page seems to try to list the best way to install
> sugar on any distribution. I think we should actually list only
> distributions which has reliable packages in their official repos,
> Fedora being certainly one of them.

Have you been to this page which is in fact the official SoaS page? It
needs some updating but I think ultimately we should just offer a list
and then redirect to the appropriate distro specific page rather than
try to document them all in the one location.


>>> I don't see all of these happening over night but they are not rocket
>>> science either.
>> Most of the above is already there on the Fedora/SoaS images, could do
>> with a little polish but for someone that knows their way around
>> python it would be easy.
> Yes, I think the hardest parts are all there. We just need to
> streamline the user experience to lower the barrier.

I welcome patches and absolutely welcome discussion on this, I've been
working on Fedora and SoaS for 4 years now and struggle with the lack
of help the sugar community offers here even though it's the only
stable platform for sugar that receives any form of active

>>> With these in place I think it would be possible to write a sane
>>> download page. I don't think it should be on a wiki, or anyway any
>>> change to it should be reviewed and tested by the marketing team +
>>> someone with technical inclination. Anything more advanced should go
>>> somewhere on the wiki, for technical people to edit and use.
>> I'm open to improvements, I'm not open to VM virtual images especially
>> for proprietary platforms especially when we're suppose to be
>> promoting open source.
> Well, I think there are two different issues here.
> One is to decide if we want to support running sugar on proprietary
> platforms. My feeling is that supporting to run an open source OS
> inside an open source VM, on a proprietary platform is still a way to
> promote open source.

I don't disagree on the above statement but ultimately we can do that
just fine with the existing ISO.

> But I don't want to get too ideological about that, my main point is
> that if decide it's a good idea then we should should support it in
> the best possible way. And *if* that requires VM virtual images than
> we should provide those.

But to support all VM platforms with one image the only way to do that
simply is an ISO. That is why upstream Fedora only supports ISOs as it
works with ALL VM platforms out there including VMware (vSphere,
Workstation, Fusion), Xen (Xen Desktop, Server, the various Citrix
options), VirtualBox, Parallels and all the various open source
derivatives of KVM. The reason we do it like that is so that we don't
confuse people with 100s of images to download. And if you mention an
OVF image you'll have to excuse me while pick myself up as I'll laugh
so hard that I will fall off my chair.

We've had this discussion many times before if you want to get all the
details please go and read the list archives.

Again if you thing this is so easy why aren't all the other distros
distributing the various virtual images..... because they cause more
problems than they've every fixed. This is one of the many advantages
we get by being involved in the upstream Fedora process..... the wide
advantage of experience of 100s of people involved in shipping and
supporting a widely used distribution.

> So, if we want to support this use case, let's do it with a single
> click application. Otherwise let's just not list it in the downloads
> page.

As stated before the single image download is the ISO.

>>> Right now it's difficult even for me to get sugar running outside
>>> linux (and even there I have to use sugar-build on most distributions
>>> because the packages are often old and broken). So I don't see how we
>>> can hope educators would do it.
>> It doesn't run outside of linux unless you mean a VM in which means
>> it's still running within Linux.
> I meant in a VM of course. I think it would be possible to build sugar
> at least for OS X, but it's probably more work than we can afford.

It won't work on OSX. There's a lot of issues with GTK on OSX. GTK3
improves on that so maybe it might be possible one day soon but
there's a lot of underlying issues there because we use core bits that
only ship on Linux to implement a lot of things like networking (to
begin with).


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