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Software Design for Installability

Steve Simmons
Inland Sea


In classic software design, little or no consideration is given to the issue of installing the resulting package on the customer machine(s). This is complicated by the rich variety of administrative policies and styles used in UNIX1 installations. This paper will not attempt to prescribe a specific method for software installation. Instead, it will focus on (a) issues which make a package installable into highly customized sites such that the package can be installed with minimal disruption to both the site and the package and (b) the reprogramming of system configurations in a style designed to minimize the impact of that reprogramming.

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