[apt] Users without internet connection can't install new software

Bug #386011 reported by Alejandro Vidal on 2009-06-11
This bug affects 2 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
One Hundred Papercuts

Bug Description

(meaning a new home user, not a geek like me)
Many users, like me can't install a new package without an internet connection, so new users with no net access can't find a way to get new software.

There are ways to do it, but it need to compile or simply use a binary downloaded from the web. So, users will not get the security of use a package or software directly from the Ubuntu/Debian repos, and can **help to introduce malicious software**.

If we have a Package manager to simplify software installation/de-installation, we get a set of useless tools.

= An Couple of Ideas =
A fix for this would be using packages.ubuntu.com in other way, and it could require package-kit :(
1) We should be able to make a report of current packages installed (maybe out of the box) and save it to a file. Use this file to know with dependencies to install, download them and package them as a super-meta-package (maybe a Ubuntu Package Installer .upi). User will have the file on the drive to download and we will read information from there, so we delete the hell-dependency that some users live downloading from packages.ubuntu.com.

I suggest use a web-based catalogue build on Titanium or maybe Adobe AIR (bad idea?).

2) A MAC and Windows apt downloader. Something like the gnome-apt-install. and download to a folder adn make a tool to install them from a specific folder from an external device.

THIS may help to users that go to a cybercafes, when almost all of them have MS Windows.

3) Sharing between users: using package kit. It has a module to share installed packages.

Right now, Ubuntu can be shared among users, but, ironically the installed packages can't.

visibility: private → public

This is definitely larger than a trivial usability fix. This is not a paper cut.

Changed in hundredpapercuts:
status: New → Invalid
Alejandro Vidal (mancvso) wrote :

but how about a packaged file with a script like "dpkg -i *.deb" inside a folder?

it would look like an auto-extract zip or something...

it would be pretty handy to be able to buy an ubuntu app catologue dvd or flash drive.

it would be useful to users without internet connection and online users, because it would speed up the installation of packages by bypassing the big download.

Matthew Paul Thomas (mpt) wrote :

The problem described in this bug report is solved by APTonCD <http://aptoncd.sourceforge.net/>.

APTonCD is fine if you already have the apps.
but without an internet connection its pretty hard to get hold of them.

i stand by my first comment.

Alejandro Vidal (mancvso) wrote :

@meepage-xD it would also be nice to support canonical this way....

but, something like a mega-package with all the dependencies in it, would be awesome, and INDEED windows support, for those who go to a cibercafe...

there was in the past a project called wapt, but it's dead.

X (axcoro) wrote :

it would be nice that synaptics generate a executable (for linux or windows) that download (in a computer with internet) the deb (and the dependences) and generate a file that can be readed by synaptics to install later in the computer without internet..

X (axcoro) wrote :

it's should not be difficult to create a program (the executable that should generate synaptics) that use "wget", maybe embedded in the program itself, to retrieve the debs and put them in a .zip

Mel C (melc) wrote :

try aptoncd....

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