[Rubyinstaller-devel] RE: Ruby Installer for OS X

Curt Hibbs curt at hibbs.com
Sat Aug 14 03:17:15 EDT 2004

Steve, I'm cc'ing Chad Fowler and Rich Kilmer on this email thread (I hope
you guys don't mind), because I'm not an OS X user (I don't even have access
to a Mac to play with), so I could easily be way off base in some of my
assumptions and comments below. Rich and Chad are OS X users who can help
straighten me out when I err.

Stephen Steiner wrote:
> > Curt Hibbs wrote:
> >
> > Have you subscribed to the rubyinstaller-devel mailing list yet?
> > We really should be carrying on this conversation there, for
> > several reasons... First off, its less likely that I'll miss
> > anything like I did with your last email, because I have ML
> > emails routed to a special folder that I pay extra attention to.
> > But, more importantly, its keeps the other developers on the
> > project "in the loop" and able to provide
> > assistance/corrections/advice when appropriate.
> I have but I've yet to receive any messages on it.

I just check the ML and you *are* subscribed. I sending this response to the
ML and directly to you, so if your subscriptions is working you should get
two copies of this. Let me know if you don't.

> > The Windows installer is a precompiled binary. The installer
> > project, itself, has two parts:
> >
> > 1.The build script (written in Ruby) downloads Ruby and extension
> > packages and builds the binary files.
> We should be able to get this to work cross-platform.


> > 2. An NSIS script picks up the binary files a creates a one-click
> > installer that contains them.
> >
> This will be the package. The installer itself comes with OS X.
> > Here's how I would like to proceed:
> > 1) For the time being, I would forget about the build script and
> > try to get a working binary build on your system that includes
> > the ruby extensions and applications (like a syntax highlighting
> > editor). If any of the extensions are already available for OS X
> > in binary format, then you don't need to build them, just install
> > it into the directory tree you are building.
> I'll have to look at the ruby scripts but I'd prefer to download
> and build right on their system. They are probably going to have
> the dev tools installed and, if not, they're right on their OS X
> disks and they're free.

You should think of this a being the same as an application installation.
The installation process should be no different that installing, say, Adobe
Acrobat, i-Tunes, or Mozilla. The idea is to be a simple and user friendly
as possible. That's why we install pre-compiled binary files. Downloading
and building ruby+extensions on the user's machine isn't going to cut it.

> Do you have any syntax highlighting editor in mind? I don't use
> one, I just use XCode or BBEdit, both of which, unfortunately, do
> a crappy job of highlighting.

I wish that SciTE had an OS X port, but no such luck. We could use JEdit
(http://www.jedit.org/), it already has builtin support for Ruby

Rich, Chad: do you have any suggestions here?

> > I need to contact Lyle Johnson about a binary build of FXRuby for
> > OS X because I really want FXRuby to be included. Actually, we
> > need it to be included because I have plans to include RubyGems
> > in the installer to allow the user to pick other ruby extensions
> > to install, and the coming-soon GUI RubyGems Browser will use FXRuby.

(note: I've already corrected my erroneous assumption that this would use
FXRuby, although its still a good idea to include FXRuby).

> Hasn't that been 'coming-soon' for like, ever?

Kind of... Actually, its my fault. I was the one who was originally going to
write this, but personal circumstances kept me from being able to do it.
Fortunately, Rich recently said that he would do it fairly soon.

> > 2) Anyway, you would then use your completed and working binary
> > build to create your .pkg-based based installer. I did a quick
> > search and found an open source installer for OS X called
> > i-install (http://www.rna.nl/ii.html). I don't know if its any
> > good, buts its worth checking out.
> As I said above, the installer ships as part of OS X.

Ok, I just finished reading up on the OS X installer, and it looks pretty

> > 4) Once we have a stable, final release. We can work on
> > automating the build process (it'll be easier at this point,
> > because you *know* what you want the result to look like). You
> > and I can work together to refactor the existing build scripts
> > for Windows so that we can share as much of the code as possible
> > between the Windows and OS X installers.
> OK.
> > For the immediate future, you can concentrate on steps 1 & 2 and
> > I'll start working on the other administrative stuff.
> You do know that Ruby comes pre-installed on OS X? If we use the
> default installation directories (/usr/local/...) then we also
> have to deal with making sure the system sees ours instead of the
> system one. On my system, I just installed it right into /usr/...
> replacing the default installation.

I know the Ruby that comes with OS X is 1.6.8, which is rather outdated. My
inclination would be to replace it by default (but the user should be able
to chose an alternate installation path.

Do you have access to a Windows box? It might be helpful to try out our
windows installer to see how it behaves and the end-result of what it
installs (including the Start Menu shortcuts).


More information about the Rubyinstaller-devel mailing list