Open Source Computing and GIS in the UK

Travels in a digital world

Important Reader Question

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OK, I’m excited to announce that the new version of Portable GIS, complete with the latest versions (as of today- I have to draw the line somewhere) of all the software, is now in testing phase and pretty much ready to release. It’s a bit slicker that the previous version, and comes with some extra software and utilities.

Here is my problem: the last release weighed in at just less that 1GB downloaded, but the new one looks like coming in at approx 1.6GB though I’m going to zip it up in an exe which might help a bit. Software tends to increase in size from version to version, so some “bloat” is unavoidable, but is 1.6GB excessive?

I have a couple of options that I can take to reduce the size. The first is to strip out programmes, so that, for instance, there is only 1 desktop GIS package, or only 1 map server package. The second is to turn this setup into a Portable App, which gives me options to compress the files. I have previously been reluctant to go down the second route because I want the files in Portable GIS to be as similar to those in a standard download as possible, so that people can dig in and see what’s going on and use Portable GIS as a spring board to installing the apps themselves. I worry that “Portable-ising” the files will alter them in some way, but if someone can reassure me about that it’s something to consider.

So, questions:

  1. Is 1.6GB excessive for a download of this type?

  2. Should I only provide one desktop package and one map server?

  3. Should I turn Portable GIS into a fully fledged portable app?

Thanks for your feedback!