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Re: missing packages..

On Thu, Jan 26, 2006 at 09:48:34PM +0000, Andrew M.A. Cater wrote:
> > Can anyone tell me why 'apt-cache search' doesn't find the
> > likes of the following:
> > 
> > 1. xv - John Bradley's X image viewer/manipulator..
> Non-free shareware. I've actually emailed John and received
> clarification on current xv status: I'm not sure that it is
> actively developed any longer. Commercial licenses mean that
> it is still valid for some users :) I replaced it by zgv as
> a quick viewer on my system but also have ImageMagick [??spelling??]
> available.

Ah, ok - I didn't think of that. Don't personally have any objection
to shareware, so long as it comes with source. 

In fact I quite like the idea of software (which costs nothing to
duplicate) provided free, but optional physical items like media
and printed manuals sold at a modest profit. I have already ordered a copy
of 'Krafft' book, and which I gather means I have made a $2 donation
to the Debian project ;)

But I don't recall the wording of the licence, and if the payment
is an unenforced requirement rather than actually optional, then
I suppose it is undesireable.

> > 2. xlock - I don't use it for locking the screen, but it is
> >    a good for benchmarking x-servers because most systems have it...
> Superseded by xscreensaver / xlockmore ?

I used to use microemacs as my editor of choice, not because it
was the best, but because it was the only one which ran on all
the systems I had to use (Unix, AmigaDOS, OS-9/68K, DOS...)
this was before open source vi lookalikes became available...

What I mean is that the advent of a more advanced program doesn't
necessarily obsolete the predecessors. 

But as someone else has pointed out, the 'xlockmore' package
apparently does install 'xlock', so it was just the package
name that was misleading me...

> > 3. mplayer - most players work ok with mpeg etc, but this is the
> >    one with which I have had the most success with troublesome
> >    formats like wmv.
> > 
> See long flamewars at various times and places as to why mplayer is 
> not currently in Debian and why various codecs can't be packaged :( 
> There is an (unofficial, non-Debian) repository of packages: Googling
> for marillat and mplayer will find it.  Totem / xine do well for me
> here: both are free and GPL. Non-free codecs from <forgotten his first
> name> Marillat may help you play wmv and other foreign formats with both
> of the above and also with mplayer: the codec licensing status may be 
> dubious: use/install them at your own risk :)

Ok, thanks. I have come across the problem with including
codecs in distributions, havn't come across objections to
individual players.

> > Am I just searching in the wrong place, or does the Debian package
> > selection really lack some very fundamental utilities, does anyone
> > know of the explanation?
> > 
> > Perhaps there are newer alternatives that are considered better,
> > but I would rather use the same programs on the various computers
> > that I need to use, and to date these have always been the common
> > denominators...
> > 
> Dependent on your local sysadmin :)

Don't mind looking at alternatives at the right time, but I don't
really want to be forced into it because of a change in distribution.

When adapting to a new distribution there is usually more than
enough to relearn without the unnecessary burden of switching
application programs at the same time...

Digby R. S. Tarvin                                          digbyt(at)digbyt.com

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