July 23rd, 2009

Update to Barbès released

1262417734_d103dead4a Last night, three weeks after La Distribution first release (codename Barbès), an update was pushed to the stable repositories.

Except the clone feature, this is mostly a bug fix release, so there is nothing huge to expect, only stability improvements and little UI touches to the admin.

On the package side, bbPress is promoted to the main repository, this mean it’s now sufficiently stable, fully featured and supported. Two new packages make their apparitions in the contrib repository: moonmoon (a feed blender application) and gallery3 (the new version of the popular photo gallery application).

To get this new release, just update your current install, or if you don’t have one yet, maybe it’s time to install one with the web installer in a few seconds.

On the development side, a branch was created to help maintain this version while we’ll be moving fast forward on trunk with the development of the new major version. An interesting point is that the now famous 3 flavors of La Distribution are at the time of writing exactly identical. This will not last long!

Bellow you’ll find a more detailed changelog for this release:

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July 20th, 2009

The 3 flavors of La Distribution

Depending on your profile and your needs, you might be interested in different flavors of La Distribution. The purpose of this article is to clarify the differences between these flavors to help you choose the one that best suits your needs.

Current Stable Release: Barbès

The stable release is the one you get when you’re installing La Distribution with the default Web Installer. In this flavor, La Distribution is updated time to time (like your OS) and you should enjoy the most stable experience. When updates are available, you’re notified in the dashboard and encouraged to upgrade.

To install this flavor, just grab the web installer script, upload it as installer.php where you want to perform the installation, adjust directory permissions and run it through your web browser. That’s all.

This release is made of two package repositories: ‘main’ & ‘contrib’. The first contains the core application and packages that pass our quality requirements. The second is optional and contains more but less advanced packages.

The two URIs for the Barbès release repositories are:

http://ladistribution.net/repositories/barbes/contrib/ (optional)

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July 9th, 2009

How to create packages? A tutorial with Moonmoon.

Distributing a new or existing web application on La Distribution is really easy. All we have to do is to embed the application in what we call a package. As of today, La Distribution can theoretically support all PHP web applications, this mean there is tons of potential applications to package.

Moonmoon logoIn this tutorial we’re going to package Moonmoon a PHP based PlanetPlanet clone. It’s relatively simple, it’s representative of a typical web application, and better, it’s from my friend Maurice! Frankly, I had no clue if the packaging was possible before starting writing this tutorial, so let’s cross our fingers.

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July 6th, 2009

La Distribution release

On thursday, I organized an apéritif to celebrate h6e.net new identity and to launch the first public release of La Distribution. Friends gathered around drinks and this was a very cool summer evening. Thanks all for coming!


The presentation (in french) about La Distribution went well and was very nicely received, generating lot of questions from the audience. As I remember:

What kind of applications are you thinking/dreaming about?

Coming from Netvibes, i can already answer that a widget dashboard application would be a great addition :-)

Also, for me, a killer application would be a personal/social mp3 jukebox where you can put all your music and exchange with your friends. This doesn’t seems very legal at first, but this is a great example of the kind of things you can do when you are 100% in control :-)

What about La Distribution in the enterprise ?

It depends the current needs of the company. For internal communication, blogging and wikis are already great, and generally we’ll do our best to add productivity applications in the catalog. But as of today, if you think about word processor or spreadsheets, i don’t know yet a decent alternative to Google or Zoho.

What do you think of Opera Unite ?

Opera Unite is very interesting, especially their proxy feature. But imho, it would have been better with a traditional server side programming/hosting environment, say PHP. Also, what happen when the laptop running Opera unite is off power or off the network?

Is it possible to apply a theme on all applications?

Not yet, but the ongoing Minimal Themes series is a step in this direction.

How to build a package? Is it difficult?

Building a package is fairly easy, but building a great package is more difficult. Detailed instructions are coming but if you’re a hacker, you can already have a look at the existing ones.

That’s all for the questions I remember. But you, dear reader, maybe do you have other questions about La Distribution?

This is the first post on this blog, hello!