setup.exe suggestion + patch

Igor Peshansky pechtcha@cs.nyu.edu
Thu Sep 13 18:27:00 GMT 2007


On Thu, 6 Sep 2007, Lewis Hyatt wrote:

> Hello-
>
> Firstly, thanks to everyone who has worked on setup.exe, it's really a
> very convenient program! There is just one thing that has always
> bothered me, which is that you have to click repeatedly on the package
> or category to cycle through all the available actions to find the one
> you want. The main problem is that each click causes the dependencies to
> be recalculated, which can cause annoying slowdowns if you're trying to
> do something like uninstall all packages in a large category. There is
> also the following situation which occurs often, especially when you are
> playing around with installing and uninstalling new packages:
>
> -package A requires package B
> -package A has two available versions
> -package B appears before package A in the list
>
> Now suppose A and B are both installed, and you want to uninstall them.
> Since B appears first, you click through to uninstall, no problem. Now
> you scroll down, maybe several pages away, and try to uninstall package
> A. The first time you click, though, you end up on the Prev version,
> which then calculates that it needs package A and goes back and sets
> package A to Install again. The only way to uninstall both of them is to
> uninstall B first, and then A. When there are multiple dependencies
> involved, it can quickly get impossible to get setup to do what you
> want.
>
> The simplest way I could think of to correct this would be to change the
> behavior so that when you click on a Category or a Package, instead of
> simply cycling through, you get a little popup menu that asks you what
> you want to do instead. This way, you can go directly to Uninstall
> without dealing with the intervening options. This also lets you see all
> available versions at once, and avoids calculating dependencies
> unnecessarily.
>
> I wrote a simple patch that implements this suggestion. Attached are the
> outputs of cvs diff (in diff.txt) and cvs diff -n (in diff_n.txt). (I'm
> sorry, I don't know much about CVS, is this the preferred way to submit
> a patch?). Here is a summary of the changes:
>
> -Created new class PopupMenu in PopupMenu.{h,cc}, which makes a popup
> menu at the mouse cursor location and returns the selected item.
>
> -Added #define to resource.h for use by PopupMenu. For now, it just
> reserves 100 IDs, supporting arbitrary popup menus with up to 100
> entries. (The number 100 is easily configurable in resource.h.)
>
> -Modified PickCategoryLine to open the menu instead of cycling.
>
> -Added new function select_action() to the packagemeta class, which
> implements the menu selection. For now, this is done in an extremely
> quick and dirty way that simple calls set_action() repeatedly to figure
> out which options would have been cycled through. I would be willing to
> re-do this in a more efficient way if this patch is deemed useful, but I
> don't even think that's necessary, I think it's fine to do it this way
> which reuses the already bug-tested code in set_action().
>
> -Modified PickPackageLine to call select_action() instead of
> set_action() when the line is clicked.
>
> -Made some minor changes to packagemeta::_action to expose the category
> strings as part of the public interface, so they could be reused in the
> popup menu.
>
> Anyway I hope this is useful, if this patch isn't acceptable please let
> me know and I can fix it or change it. I wasn't sure about conventions
> with tabs, line endings, line lengths, etc., for one thing. In general,
> I think the problem I have described requires fixing. If you don't think
> this solution is an improvement, I can look into fixing it a different
> way also.

First off, thank you for the popup menu implementation -- I was planning
to use it for something else in setup, and now I don't have to write it.

Second, I agree that the problem is good, and I like your solution of
selection vs. cycling.

Third, I have to apologize -- I've had a partial reply to your message
sitting in my drafts since the day you sent it, but got bogged down.

A few comments on the patch:
1) It would be great if you used "diff -up" -- unified diffs are so much
easier to read.
2) Is there a reason you use popup menus, rather than pull-down lists?
3) [Minor] You'd use the GNU coding guidelines for whitespace and
indentation.

If you could resend a unified diff, I'll apply it in my tree and test it
out.
	Igor
-- 
				http://cs.nyu.edu/~pechtcha/
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ZZZzz /,`.-'`'    -.  ;-;;,_		Igor Peshansky, Ph.D. (name changed!)
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