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Re: Bug#374373: ITP: googleearth-package -- utility for automatically building a Google Earth Debian package

Joe Smith wrote:
> Is this really needed? Google was very careful in making sure that the
> package installs in /usr/local, and does not interfere with the
> system. Normally the main reason why a debian package is better than
> what upsteam distributed is because using upstreams packages will mess
> with stuff it should not touch.
Well, it doesn't install in /usr/local (by default, you can get it
there) but in a user's home directory. Actually, perhaps if you run it
as root it will pick /usr/local by default, but I didn't try that (I
don't usually run things as root, even stuff from Google).
> Google Earth takes care of its own updates by prompting the user, and
> allowing them to download and run the new installer (or at least it
> does on windows, and I can't imagine why the linux version would not).
> Needing to use a *-package utility prevents automatic updates anyway,
> and does not simplify installation much if any. So the only real
> advantage would seem to be that it would make Google Earth easier to
> uninstall. Well I guess it simplifies pushing updates out to a bunch
> of workstations, but in most cases users should just download the the
> .bin and run it.
Apparently, the "easier to uninstall" is a bigger deal to me than it is
to you. So this utility may not be for you.

There has only been one version out for GNU/Linux as far as I'm aware,
so I'm not sure anyone knows exactly how the updater works. Seeing how
their software is packaged, I actually don't see any way that the
Debianized version would break updates if run as root (which would have
to be the case anyway unless every user has their own version) but
personally I don't like programs that try to update themselves outside
of package management.

Anyway, there are a few advantages:
  * Once you've made the package, you can install on multiple machines
  * It's much cleaner, as you have a managed Debian package to
  * In-program updates are optional (run as root and do them, or don't).
  * If you don't like doing it this way, nobody is going to make you do
it. =)

But the most important one of all is: I've found it useful, I've got it
working[1], and I'd like to give others an opportunity to use it if they
want to.

[1] (almost working--I'm still tweaking it a bit, since I've only been
working on it for a few hours)

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