Last month I pro­posed that the FOSS com­munity cre­ate an integ­rated soft­ware installer for Win­dows and Mac OS that only included FOSS applic­a­tions. If Google can make Google Pack, I opined, why can’t we make a FOSS Pack?

As I had expec­ted, my idea was already real­ised, at least in part. Win­Libre and Mac­Libre provide a menu of free/​libre soft­ware pack­ages for the user to choose from, and can auto­mat­ic­ally install them for you.

That’s a big step in the right dir­ec­tion, albeit not the beauty we have on GNU/​Linux through tools like Add/​Remove Applic­a­tions and apt-url. It haven’t tried them (I rarely use Win­dows and I don’t have a Mac), but here’s what I think they need to truly shine (based on my last post on the sub­ject):

  • an updates man­age­ment ser­vice, that auto­mat­ic­ally checks for avail­able updates and installs them for you
  • an abil­ity to cleanly remove the soft­ware just as eas­ily as it was installed
  • a file sys­tem scan­ner that recom­mends FOSS soft­ware to install, based on the soft­ware and file types it finds on the hard drive

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