Browse Prior Art Database

Tool for Automatic Assembly of Distributions

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000125940D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Jun-23
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jun-23
Document File: 1 page(s) / 21K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

A tool is proposed that allows distributors to help customers download Open Source Code without becoming subjected themselves to OS licensing terms.

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Tool for Automatic Assembly of Distributions

Many companies find themselves in a dilemma with respect to open source software: While they embrace open source and open standards they also eschew distributing open source for reasons of liability. In many cases this does not present a direct problem because customers may install a product (open source or not) on top of an open source platform (such as Linux). In other settings, boot strapping becomes an issue and requires customers to download packages from diverse third party locations, and then to patch, assemble and configure extensively. This latter process significantly raises the cost of entry and interrupts otherwise automated processes (breaking them). The installation procedure can become greatly complicated by the fact that some distributors choose not to distribute open source.

The proposal is the creation of a general purpose tool that the customer executes which downloads packages and code from diverse sources (specified by URI), verifies the authenticy of the downloaded resources (using cryptographic check sums), and automatically assembles these into a single self-contained distribution that is readily installable, without need for further software or processes. As such, the vendor enables the use of open source tools without assuming liability, while keeping the low cost of entry associated to automated processes. For example, one enables the customers to create Linux distributions that work seemless...