6 Mar 2004 mikehearn   » (Journeyer)

I should blog here more often really. Does anybody actually read or care about what we write here though? I don't know.

Wine

I work part-time for CodeWeavers now. This is such an incredibly cool company, I don't know where to begin :) They pay me to hack Wine. I'm happy because I get some money to help me through university, they're happy because I don't spend all my time doing autopackage and because they get to choose what I hack on. We've got some exciting projects coming up, too bad I can't talk about them.

Unfortunately, prelink and exec-shield still break the snot out of us. I've developed 2 working prototypes for fixes now, but unfortunately the best of the two is blocked on a kernel bug. It's been reported to lkml but I'm not expecting a fix anytime soon and I don't have the time nor skills to do it myself. Probably we will just go with the original mechanism I developed on the way to and from WineConf 2004. It's 300+ lines of code and will give Wine a 3 stage init process, but it seems all our other options have been exhausted :(

autopackage

We released 0.4, finally. The network retrieval code still needs some work, in particular with error handling which we don't really do at all currently. The next release (0.5) was supposed to just be focussing on documentation and demo packages, but to be honest we're going to have to do some serious hacking as well. We've discovered yet another binary portability problem as well. There's an automatic solution but it's not trivial. Looks 0.5 is going to be some time off as well.

On the upside, everybody has said it's really impressed them so far, and an old friend of mine who is also doing compsci is getting into Linux. He is thinking of working on autopackage for his 3rd year project, as apparently that's allowed. So maybe more manpower is coming soon!

I've also started putting some more thought into what comes after autopackage. There's always been something of a grand plan, but it might be time to start executing "stage 2". Daniel Stones work on the freedesktop.org platform is important, but I've got a lot of ideas on how it could be done differently.

Me and ChipX86 have also started laying the foundations for the next-gen packaging UI we're toying with.

One thing that me and Chip have repeatedly thought is that it's a very exciting time to be involved with Linux. There's so much cool stuff going on. We're on the last leg of the race to catch up with the competition, and once we've caught up - then... then is when we will start to see real innovation. There's so much stuff you can do when you have the source to everything, the possibilities are endless :)

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