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Portable-VirtualBox needs a new main developer (vbox.me)
36 points by runarb on Feb 14, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 10 comments



I wasn't aware that portable VirtualBox was possible; I thought it required some kind of drivers to run at usable speeds, which would require administrative privileges and installing junk in the Windows directories. Or maybe I'm thinking of the "qemu accelerator" that existed a while ago.

Is there any chance of getting portableness into mainline?

IMHO every application should be self-contained in its own directory, i.e. "portable." Spewing stuff all over the registry, home directory, and Windows directory isn't good.

Linux is actually just as bad as Windows in regard to applications that put pieces of themselves everywhere. Part of the reason InstallShield(R) wizards and package managers exist is because people insist on complicating things like this.

My dpkg -L firefox says that the Firefox package has data in:

  /usr/lib/firefox-addons
  /usr/lib/firefox
  /usr/bin/firefox
  /usr/share/man/man1/firefox.gz
  /usr/share/doc/firefox
  /usr/share/applications/firefox.desktop
  /usr/share/lintian
  /usr/share/apport
  /usr/share/pixmaps/firefox
  /etc/firefox
  $HOME/.mozilla
And that's not all, there are also the firefox-gnome-support and firefox-locale-en, AFAIK required for Firefox to function, which also probably spew things everywhere.

Is this really necessary? Is it too much to ask to just have everything you need in C:\FIREFOX or /opt/firefox?

I recently had a rant here on this subject which got downvoted, so I know I'm playing with fire by bringing this up.


Once upon a time a Linux distro attempted to solve this problem, http://www.gobolinux.org/

Sadly I don't think it gets much in the ways of updating anymore.


You are right. VirtualBox needs to load several Windows kernel drivers to function. So if the drivers are not already installed you’ll need administrator rights to run it. Portable-VirtualBox loads and then unloads this drivers when you use it, so it isn't truly portable in that way.

There are no way around this if you want to run the quest os directly on the cpu as VirtualBox dos. Otherwise you would have to use a emulator like Qemu, but then you would only get 1/20 of the speed or so.


You should throw this up on github, bitbucket or codeplex. DVCS always seems to work best for this type of development.


right, open source your stuff and the community is willing to help you


It is already open source and available at Sourceforge: http://www.vbox.me/source-code/ .

GitHub are probably much hotter then Sourceforge this days, but Sourceforge was what we used back then :) Do you think that it is worth the effort to change to GitHub? Will it be easier to attract more developers then?


It absolutely will. Sourceforge is adequate if you want to manage a project within an established team. But Github really unlocks an entire community to participate, shattering the barrier of entry to anybody who wants to chip in.


Thank you for the tips. Sounds like a good idea to move to GitHub. Especially do I like that non developers can edit files directly from the web interface. I get frequently updates on the language files for example. Had been nice if the authors of them could commit the changes directly to the repository.

Any other suggestions?


I am pretty sure you will be more likely to attract more developers, and more active developers by putting it up on GitHub. There is also the added benefit of moving from svn to git. Keep in mind this is all speculation.


putting it on github might [will] get you more bug reports and small patches, but you're looking for a release manager and general owner. you want someone who cares. if they care, then where it is doesn't make much difference.

so i don't think it's going to be a big help right now. it would make more sense for the new owner (if/when you find one) to do it... your time would be better spent trying to find that special someone. do you have any way to contact existing users? emails? could you put a pop-up in the next release?




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