Microsoft NuPack

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Craig Nicol

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Oct 6, 2010, 4:02:08 PM10/6/10
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In case you hadn't heard, Microsoft have announced their own (binary) package manager. I've spoken to some of the team, along with Seb, with his OpenWrap experience. I guess it shows that it was the right problem to try and solve. Shame they couldn't properly embrace opensource and support someone else's solution like they did with jQuery.

Simone Busoli

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Oct 6, 2010, 4:15:37 PM10/6/10
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Looks like the story repeats once again, let's see where it ends.

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Paul Cowan

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Oct 6, 2010, 5:18:01 PM10/6/10
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Like most people on this list, I am big on OSS, it makes you wonder why we stick around in a platform that is OSS adverse and in fact goes out of its way to squash OSS initiatives with its own, lesser alternatives.

Nupack is a closed platform that was revealed like a rabbit from a hat.

Most .NET developers do not even use open source software and even 

I think we should all check out Openwrap or Nu.

Cheers

Paul Cowan

Cutting-Edge Solutions (Scotland)

http://thesoftwaresimpleton.blogspot.com/

Craig Nicol

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Oct 6, 2010, 5:31:35 PM10/6/10
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I definitely think Horn is solving a different problem from the others, since it works at the source code level. That's always going to be a niche concern, but it's very important in that niche.

I spoke to the guys involved, and the plan (if the lawyers allow) is to release everything to a CodePlex repository that allows commits, and to provide extension hooks within Visual Studio to allow other package managers to integrate. Being Microsoft, they have a head start on a lot of problems that are a lot harder for OSS projects, mostly visibility and engagement, but I'm not sure that's enough.

If Crystal Reports, Telerik controls and a bunch of other paid-for libraries aren't available, why would any developer outside Alt.Net choose to look there? OSS still isn't in .Net's blood, despite the best efforts of the Mono project. At least .Net isn't of itself openly hostile to OSS, unlike, say, OOXML.

I don't believe however that this is an attempt to squash OSS. I think it's a way for Microsoft to provide extra visibilty and ease-of-use for 3rd party components, and unfortunately it steps on the toes of existing OSS package management tools to do it. As I said on twitter, it's a shame the legal boys at Microsoft couldn't find a way to embrace the existing OSS tools, either by adopting one, as they did with jQuery, or providing an easy set of extension points, as they do with MVC2.

Craig

Paul Cowan

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Oct 6, 2010, 5:44:48 PM10/6/10
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It solves a problem most .NET devs do not have as they do not have any non MS dependencies.

Horn is sadly dead anyway, in some ways it might have worked if we had got buy in from the other OSS projects.

At one stage I had hoped that we would have had like a CI build for all the big OSS projects from a horn build as the horn build would resolve the dependencies.

Castle made it difficult as they merge and unmerge their projects on an almost daily basis and the way they rev their version numbers like a formula one racing driver.  Windsor 2.1, 2.5 2.989987 etc., etc.  It really does end up hurting the stability of the whole ecosystem but it will never change, I am sure of that.

I am wondering if that will prove the undoing of any other attempts.


Cheers

Paul Cowan

Cutting-Edge Solutions (Scotland)

http://thesoftwaresimpleton.blogspot.com/



Hitesh Sarda

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Oct 7, 2010, 2:23:44 PM10/7/10
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Wanted to highlight that NuPack is developed with close collabration with the Nu team (http://nu.wikispot.org/Front_Page) who already were working on this problem. And the same team is now working on Nu pack as well.

From http://www.outercurve.org/News/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/20

NuPack was jointly contributed by Microsoft, the foundation’s funding sponsor, and the independent developers of the Nubular (NU) project.

“The NuPack project is significant because two groups of developers - one independent, one from Microsoft - discovered they were working to solve the same problem and decided to collaborate and contribute the combined project to the Foundation.”


- Hitesh [http://hitesh.in/]

Paul Cowan

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Oct 7, 2010, 2:31:29 PM10/7/10
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Hi,

I seen the news.  I still do not think any of the new wave of package managers tried to solve the problem of dependencies.

I wonder how it will work with different dependencies in different packages.

I suppose the only way is to give it a try.

I am waiting until Nhibernate 3.0 goes RTM before updating my stack.

I'll try and use either openwrap or nupack.


Cheers

Paul Cowan

Cutting-Edge Solutions (Scotland)

http://thesoftwaresimpleton.blogspot.com/



Simone Busoli

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Oct 7, 2010, 4:19:41 PM10/7/10
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As I observed already, it's not a dependency manager, just a dll downloader, which I think is pretty useless as it is now.

Paul Cowan

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Oct 7, 2010, 4:53:13 PM10/7/10
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>> just a dll downloader, 

That is very disappointing.  There should at least be a central repository where all the .dlls are pulled from.

The transport was never the problem in my book, it was all about the dependencies.

I do not see this as any really progress.


Cheers

Paul Cowan

Cutting-Edge Solutions (Scotland)

http://thesoftwaresimpleton.blogspot.com/



Simone Busoli

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Oct 7, 2010, 4:56:37 PM10/7/10
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take mine as a rant, it's not really just a downloader, I think it takes care of dependencies as well, but still, I don't think this is the point. getting dependencies into a project is just the tip of the iceberg as far as my experience goes.

Simone Busoli

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Oct 7, 2010, 6:03:53 PM10/7/10
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Neal Blomfield

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Oct 8, 2010, 1:15:27 AM10/8/10
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Warning: Rant Ahead.
 
Bellware ringing the same old tired bell.
 
If this was anyone but Microsoft would people be whining quite as much? I doubt it.  Enough with the bitching and either solve the problem better or get the fuck out of the way.
 
NuPack doesn't try to solve all the problems that other package managers solve (yet), however it represents the best chance that .NET has of increasing the exposure of OSS to the wider .NET community.  With greater visibility comes the potential for greater community and greater participation in the community.  Maybe enough participation so that one day, we solve the problem before MS does and they endorse the solution by publicising or shipping it.
 
If you don't like NuPack - fine, don't use it. 
 
If you don't like that MS did NuPack - think very carefully about why, because all they have done is introduced another package manager into the "alt.net space" to compete with existing ones - in the same way that SM competes with Windsor.  Something that MS has done that most other OSS projects struggle mightily to do is introduce an OSS solution into the mainstream .NET space - not only that, but said solution actually highlights the availability of more OSS solutions.
 
I have seen a lot of people talking about exiting the .NET community for Ruby because we lack a true community.  I say that a big part of community is respect and healthy debate, not tearing something down just because you don't like who did it and definately not the torrent of vitriol I have seen on twitter etc about NuPack.
 
Step up and make it better (code or constructive criticism) or shut the fuck up.
 
Rant over.


From: horn-dev...@googlegroups.com [mailto:horn-dev...@googlegroups.com] On Behalf Of Simone Busoli
Sent: Friday, 8 October 2010 11:04 a.m.
To: horn-dev...@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: [horn-development] Microsoft NuPack

Paul Cowan

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Oct 8, 2010, 4:33:25 AM10/8/10
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I don't really have a problem with MS being now part of it although seeing telerik in the list of package definitions does not sit well with me at all.

This space to me, was about delivering OSS and not comercial offerings.  Anyway if I was convinced their approach would work, I would be a willing user.

To me, this is as Simone said, a bit of a glorified .dll downloader.  It does not solve the dependency problems across packages which was what horn did, in a very brute force way admittedly.

Unsigning assemblies and dealing with unsigned assemblies might go some way to making dependencies work across packages.  I need to try this out for real to be totally convinced it will work.

Openwrap is going this route (I think), so it wins my vote of which package manager to use.

Nupack just delivers .dlls and tries to resolve to the right assembly and hopes it will work.  In my experience, this will not work.

There are a million castle and boo versions out there that just do not fit together being used by various oss projects.  They just do not fit together in their current state.

Unsigning might work but just delivering them and hoping that the relevant OSS project will see sense and start playing fair has little chance of success.

Take castle for example, the subprojects don't even work together without manually recompiling everything and they are constantly merging and unmerging their stuff.

A lot of OSS use castle and a lot of OSS have different versions of the same castle .dlls.  They are all signed and all problematic together which was why we tried to compile from source.

Unsigning might work, I hope it does and I nupack has decided to ignore the problem rather than do something other than rely on the good will of OSS to do something when they have little enough time to work on their own stuff.



Cheers

Paul Cowan

Cutting-Edge Solutions (Scotland)

http://thesoftwaresimpleton.blogspot.com/



Sebastien Lambla

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Oct 8, 2010, 5:56:32 AM10/8/10
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Competition is healthy, and keeping Microsoft honest by not letting them communicate on being angels when they didn’t do things right with this project is also the responsibility of the community.

 

At the end of the day, a certain dose of arrogance in how MS does things has always been what the community has reacted against in the past, and this time around it is no different.

 

It’s also ridiculous to suggest that any group acting exactly the same way should be treated with the same standards as Microsoft. Microsoft has a monopoly on development tools in the .net sphere, a massive marketing budget, etc etc. This is a reality that is put in the balance when judging their actions, and anyone ignoring this is ignoring this simple fact.

 

That said, we’re pressing forward with OpenWrap as an alternative platform, and innovating along the way as we’ve done for many months, as we approach our first beta release. No point in continuing the discussion on MS intentions, it was important that it happened, now we know where we stand and we can move on.

Rob Reynolds

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Oct 8, 2010, 6:46:23 PM10/8/10
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Agreed. Hopefully out of this OSS tools start to converge into the mainline toolboxes of those that have never heard of your OSS or my OSS tools before. That's the real win in my book. Not whether it's Nu, NuPack, OpenWrap or <insert tool here> that gets them said tools.
 
And like I said in the blog post referenced above, competition is healthy. It can only serve to benefit the community at large when products are competing. It's a good time to be in .NET development right now. And an even better time to be an OSS provider. It's about time we popped the OSS cherry of the community at large.

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