[squeak-dev] squeak 4.1 download confusion for Unix, esp Debian

David T. Lewis lewis at mail.msen.com
Fri Apr 23 00:37:59 UTC 2010

On Wed, Apr 21, 2010 at 07:57:19PM -0700, Ross Boylan wrote:
> Going to squeak.org and following the download link for linux in the
> upper right puts you in http://ftp.squeak.org/4.1/unix-linux/.  I don't
> think this is very friendly, especially for a newcomer, for the
> following reasons:
> 1. There are multiple files and it's not clear which one(s) to get or
> what their different roles are.
> 2. Some of the files have 4.0 in their names.
> 3. One of the files, judging by the name, is for Darwin.  I believe that
> is BSD, not Linux, based.
> If in the download section when clicks on the installation link, which
> in turn directs you to http://squeak.org/Documentation/Installation for
> Unix and http://wiki.squeak.org/squeak/3616 for Debian.
> The former is only about the VM.  The latter says to use a repository on
> squeak.org, but I thought that the current debs were going into mainline
> debian.  (Maybe only for the VM).
> I have some suggestions:
> Change the "Download" section to "Get Squeak".  The linux link takes you
> to a page recommending that you get if from your distribution, and then
> saying "If your distribution does not have squeak packaged, or if it
> does not have a current package, then you will need the following
> files..."  And finally there should be links to the files.
> Ideally, the page would indicate what version was currently packaged in
> each distribution.
> Finally, here is my best guess about the numbered confusions above:
> 1. One needs
> http://ftp.squeak.org/4.1/unix-linux/Squeak-
> for the VM and http://ftp.squeak.org/4.1/unix-linux/Squeak4.1.zip for
> the image/changes.  One only needs
> http://ftp.squeak.org/4.1/unix-linux/Squeak- to
> build the VM from source.
> Ignore the darwin file.
> 2. The most current Unix VM's are 4.0.  This still surprises me a bit,
> since I thought closures needed VM support and they are advertised as a
> 4.1 feature.  Maybe the necessary VM changes were already in place at
> 4.0.

Ross, I don't know how to reduce the confusion, but I do want to explain
that the version levels of the VM are not, and should not be, the same
as those for the image. We made version labels for recent VMs that start
with "4" to give folks the idea that they more or less line up with the
Squeak 4.x images (and Pharo 1.x images also btw), but maybe that is just
leading to further confusion(?).

The ideal situation is that any version of the VM can run any version of
the image, and any image can run on any VM. Of course we cannot reach
the ideal, but there is still a good deal of independence between the
VMs and the images. This is a Good Thing.

> 3. Ignore the darwin file.  Should it be cleaned out/relocated, e.g., to
> OS-X?

Maybe it should be in a "unix" folder instead of "unix-linux", but
there are so many people using Linux these days that some of them
might be confused if they had to look for their VM in a "unix" folder.
My guess would be that anyone loading a darwin VM already knows what
they are doing, and that most Mac users should be following the link
to the supported Mac VMs anyway.


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