[openbeos-cdt] Re: .pkg package uninstaller GUI

  • From: "DarkWyrm" <darkwyrm@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: openbeos-cdt@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 30 Jun 2007 09:36:20 -0400 EDT

> Hi,
> I think the time has finally come to start the discussion about the
> Package Uninstaller user interface. Once again, I write here for good
> advice and help in this task.
> I wanted to start this sooner so that after finishing the installer I
> could move straight on to working on the uninstaller.
> The Package Uninstaller should be a simple application giving the 
> user
> the ability to remove packages installed on the system. With this, 
> the
> first question arises - since there were discussions about package 
> file
> collisions, should control over which versions of files should a 
> package
> use be in the competence of this application? Given, of course, that
> file collision would be treated in any advanced way.
I think I've mentioned this before -- there's not a lot we can do to do 
package management the Right Way until R2 -- trying to do it in R1 will 
spur debates that will make it more difficult to get R1 out the door. 
:( What I would suggest is to take the route that Uninstall did and 
simply parse the SV log files and uninstall accordingly. The only thing 
I can think of that might work in this case would be for the package 
installer to add a flag to the log file (as an attribute) if the user 
chose to overwrite a library such that the Uninstaller could check for 
any libraries which were not to be deleted.

> There's not much that can confuse the user, and its functions are
> explicitly given. What it lacks, though, is giving the user the
> information about the given package. I think it's important. The
> targeted everyday user won't remember what all installed applications 
> do
> and whether they are necessary for him/her or not. What information
> should be included? The description and size for sure. As for the 
> rest -
> don't know.
I think that what you've mentioned should be sufficient -- name, size, 
and description. Nice idea. :)

> I have a few propositions ready in my mind. The first one can be seen 
> below.
> http://sil2100.vexillium.org/ui_proposition_00.svg
> Simple. After selection of any item from the list view the 
> description
> changes to the currently selected package. I didn't want too much 
> space
> to be occupied by the list view, since the names of the packages are
> usually not too long. The description is placed at the bottom, so 
> that
> it wouldn't take much unnecessary attention from the user.
> Free space above the "Uninstall" button was left on purpose; because 
> 1)
> it looks clean this way, 2) in case some additional feature was to be 
> added.
It _is_ simple. Nice work. :) My only gripe is the actual layout, but 
not for any particular usability reason -- just an opinion. From my own 
experience, I'd say that what you've suggested (and you have plausible 
reasons for doing so) is just not typical control layout. The main 
reason is that the listview and description are left-aligned, but not 
right-aligned. Combine that with a bottom-aligned button, and what you 
have is something that is visually off-balance. It is also not 
consistent with the general style (hard to define, I know) of the rest 
of the GUI apps in the OS.

A way to address these stylistic issues would be to place the listview 
at the top, the description in the middle, and the Uninstall button in 
the bottom right corner. You would still have some space for adding on 
and there would be more visual balance.


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