[vlc-devel] Future of the update mechanism

Rémi Denis-Courmont remi at remlab.net
Thu Jul 30 11:24:33 CEST 2009

On Thu, 30 Jul 2009 09:53:54 +0200, Sébastien Escudier
<sebastien-devel at celeos.eu> wrote:
> unfortunately, the majority of users, don't want to take care of updates
> themselves.
> Even with a one click automatic update, most of them will answer "no"
> because they don't want to bother.
> So I think the mozilla way is not that bad, because of critical security
> updates.

Automatic updates are fraught with problems:
- IT depts cannot control what versions their users have,
- slow connections get congested silently,
- pay-per-bit connections will charge silently,
- large sites lacking HTTP proxies will cause many Internet downloads;
  private software installation servers cannot be used.

> But I agree the user should be able to deactivate it.

This is not sufficient. How does an user know to deactivate it? How does an
IT department force its users to deactivate it?
If we ever have fully automatic updates, IMHO, it should not be turned on
by default without ever asking, especially not for the non-executable
packages. Those are used for unattended/controlled deployments.

> Maybe the best would be to have automatic bug-fixes update,
> and manual version upgrades.

We have too little QA/testing resources and too large a code base to avoid
regressions even in bug fix releases, so we cannot make that distinction.

Rémi Denis-Courmont

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