In my last blog post about WebLive I announced the availability on WebLive of the top-50 apps from the new Ratings & Review service.
Today I’m happy to announce that this feature is no longer necessary as you can now test drive anything that’s available in the Ubuntu archive.
At the moment that’s over 1300 desktop application that you can test this way.
That’s basically any GUI app that requires less than 150MB of space to install and that’s not in one of my blacklists (video editing, 3D, VOIP, VMs, …).
As a reminder, all that you need is an up to date Ubuntu 11.04 system and the qtnx package installed (default in Edubuntu).
Full desktop sessions are still available at: http://www.edubuntu.org/weblive
This feature uses another of my pet projects Arkose to dynamically create containers (see LXC) whenever someone logs in. Each user is allocated up to 500MB for the test drive feature. On login, the system will check if it already has the requested app in the default system and if not, will download and install it when you connect.
NOTE: The current blacklist isn’t perfect, so if you notice any package that has a Test drive button in the Software Center and doesn’t work, please file a bug here: https://launchpad.net/weblive/+filebug
Sandbox started as a quick hack I wrote at the Ubuntu Developer Summit in Orlando, FL back in October.
Since then it evolved quite a bit, getting a decent user interface and even a nautilus plugin.
Only thing that really was missing before making it an “official” project is a “real” name.
After thinking about it for a while (trust me, I’m really bad at finding names), I finally ended up browsing sand-related pages on Wikipedia and chose to go ahead with “Arkose”.
Arkose (pronounced /ˈɑrkoʊz/) is a detrital sedimentary rock, specifically a type of sandstone containing at least 25% feldspar.
I really liked “sandbox” as a name though, but it was a bit of a pain to Google for, apt-cache was returning multiple results too and finding relevant dent/tweet was a really difficult. So instead, I’ll mostly be using “Arkose – desktop sandboxing”. The name itself being a lot less common and “desktop sandboxing” is already giving very good Google results.
I finally created a Launchpad project and moved the branch to it. I’m expecting packages to hit the archive over the next few days.
PPA is available at: https://launchpad.net/~arkose-devel/+archive/stable