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Zero Install ready to run a downloaded program
|Stable release||0.42  / September 6, 2009|
|Operating system||Linux, Unix, Mac OS X|
|License||GNU Lesser General Public License|
Rather than the normal method of downloading a software package, extracting it, and installing it before it can be used (with the accompanying use of destructive updates and privilege escalation), packages distributed using Zero Install need only run and usually comes in Application Directory format (presented to the user as a single file). The first time software is accessed, it is downloaded from the Internet and (if so configured) cached; subsequently, software is accessed from the cache. Programs are accessed by the fully qualified name of their URI; ex. one would not run "vim textfile.txt", but "http://www.vim.org/vim textfile.txt".
The Zero Install system was originally a combination of two packages: A module for the Linux kernel providing the lazyfs filesystem, and a Zero Install daemon process, which fetched new software when needed. This system was later replaced with a set of user-level tools written in Python, called the Injector (a reference to Dependency Injection). The system is intended to be used along-side a distribution's native package manager.
The main advantage of Zero Install over more popular packaging systems is that no root password is needed to install software; packages can be installed in system locations writable by that user. Thus, package installation affects only the user installing it, which makes it possible for all users to be able to install and run new software.
- Application virtualization
- Portable application creators
- Java Web Start
- ROX Desktop
- The Zero Install webpage
- Decentralised Installation Systems - essay on OSNews.com
- pkgsrc and the concepts of package management 1997-2007 (part 2) - The Zero Install system
- Zero Install: An executable critique of native package systems - linux.com review and interview
- Neue Zero Install-Implementation - article on pro-linux.de
- Zero Install: The Future of Linux on the Desktop? - Slashdot articlees:Zero Install