Comments on: REBOL 2.7.7 - Does it install correctly?
REBOL Technologies

Comments on: REBOL 2.7.7 - Does it install correctly?

Carl Sassenrath, CTO
REBOL Technologies
15-Jan-2010 21:45 GMT

Article #0455
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We got a feedback today saying that REBOL/View 2.7.7 is a "thug" because it puts folders on the Windows desktop! If that's true, it's news to us! Certainly, such behavior is not intentional -- and we'll fix it immediately if we can track it down.

When we test on our systems, we see the REBOL program icon. That's all. The other folders are in their installation locations.

However, if you installed a previous version of REBOL, newer versions will use the same location information. That's considered a feature. If the user says put the files in some location, we'll keep them there.

Let's gather some info on this, so we can figure it out. Post any notes here that can help us track it down, and we'll fix it for 2.7.8. Thanks.



15-Jan-2010 15:17:44
I put the rebol-view-277-3-1.exe file in C:\Program\Rebol\ and choose to install in the same directory. Now I have two exe files there, the above mentioned and rebol.exe. I'm not sure what use installing it is. Some files are placed in the profile directories (C:\Documents and Settings\crex\Application Data\rebol\) that otherwise was put in the Rebol exe directory. I suppose Rebol now also resides in the Windows registry [Win XP SP3]
Jim Richards
15-Jan-2010 16:17:41
I just installed 2.7.7 and had no problems here. It installed as you indicating in your post
16-Jan-2010 1:38:54
I have that problem in Windows Vista. Install REBOL in the default directory, using all default settings, and whenever a .r script is run by double clicking the file in Windows Explorer, it creates a new "public" folder in the same directory as the script. There was a discussion about this on the mailing list last year:

Windows Vista has removed some of the "Open With" options that were available in XP, which appear to solve the problem...

16-Jan-2010 1:45:32
This reminds me of the inability to remove "REBOL - " from the title bar of REBOL GUI windows. I'd be willing to bet that's kept many users from using REBOL...

(Of course it can be done with the OS api, so why not just make a simpler option? It becomes a problem when all dialogs, requesters, etc., need it removed.)

16-Jan-2010 1:53:26
My solution to the "public" folders issue has been:

REBOL [] view layout [size 500x400] delete %public/

I assumed it was a "feature" of some sort :)

16-Jan-2010 1:57:13
As stated in that mailing list thread, RAMBO ticket #4181 states a suggestion to remove the ability to create public folders anywhere. That REBOL created public folders wherever I click in Explorer to execute a script, is an old "feature" that I would be happy to get rid of. I think that is what occurs here. I rarely, if ever, use the public folder.
Brian Hawley
16-Jan-2010 2:31:06
Henrik, Nick, the %public/ folder is used by the View desktop sandboxing. There was a bug in 2.7.6 that made View not install correctly, which was fixed in 2.7.7. You might think you don't use the %public/, but if you use the desktop or any of the *-thru functions then you are using it.
Robert M. Münch
16-Jan-2010 3:30:44
Please, please remove the public folder creation. It annoys me all the time. I just want an interpreter, copy it in a directory and that's it. No install, no directories, nothing. No Viewtop etc. It makes things unnecessary complex.

Viewtop should be optional and be downloaded if I type desktop.

16-Jan-2010 3:33:36
if you use the desktop or any of the *-thru functions then you are using it.

Yes, and by grouping up which functions use the public folder, we can more easily opt to get rid of it. The folder is created unconditionally, even if we run a simple script that don't use those functions, and the folder is always empty. I perhaps end up using the public 0.1% of the time I create a script.

Many people don't like that the MacOSX Finder creates .DS_Store files all over network disks and there is a secret option to turn it off. This is the same story here, except public folders are visible, which is even worse. Internet browsers store cache files appropriately in cache folders which are located in specific places on disk. REBOL should do the same.

16-Jan-2010 4:33:18
The public folder creation has to be avoided. And if we need it, it should be in just one place, accessible by all REBOL script (in a temp directory). I am on the same wave as Robert is - a copy&run guy, but if we need to provide installations, let's at least have it clean. I also hate when Desktop automatically pops-up ...
16-Jan-2010 7:02:17
Viewtop should be *optional* and be *downloaded* if I type desktop.


One common place for the public directory (under the user's temp dir)


16-Jan-2010 7:05:52
This has been a problem for many, many years. I don't know if it's fixed in 2.7.7 or if it uses previous settings. I think you can easily double REBOL's market share by fixing this "feature".
17-Jan-2010 3:03:07
I just tried re-installing somewhere to see if I got any extra folders. I didn't, HOWEVER, browsing around rebsites I got this error:

** Access Error: Cannot open /c/documents and settings/ I/Desktop/r/tmp/public/ p ** Near: do >>

I use tweak UI, so I never noticed, because that's not where my desktop folder is located.

I killed the directory 'r' and fired off the rebview.exe binary again, and my settings were then hosed, and the 'r' directory with the 'tmp' dir with the rebol goodies in there.

So yes. It does do it. I backed out and got my settings back, so no worries, but I might suggest:

%APPDATA%\Rebol for those files. That would be the normal place to put such stuff. That's where most apps keep this stuff.

The environment variable %APPDATA% points by default to C:\Documents and Settings\{username}\Application Data

It's hidden and there's usually no good reason to go digging around in there, anyway.

17-Jan-2010 8:10:52
Rebol.exe should start from console as default, user can change the setting after installation.

public folder is really annoying, if it is necessary then it should be %appdata% folder just like the user.r file.

2.7.7 setup can ask to "import" the old settings (user.r, file assoc., desktop etc.) during installation.

17-Jan-2010 15:48:08
I have seen the pulbic folder pop up in the past, on XP, not just with the last release.

What happens if a %public/ already exists ...and its not REBOL's?

19-Jan-2010 2:39:38
From Nick: 'This reminds me of the inability to remove "REBOL - " from the title bar of REBOL GUI windows.'




Brian Hawley
20-Jan-2010 16:43:40
ScottT, Endo, the public folder goes in the view root folder, which is by default in %appdata%\REBOL. If your folders aren't going that way, it is most likely because of a botched install of a prior R2 version.

Check in the registry, HKCU\Software\Rebol\View, the Sandbox value - it has the location of the REBOL sandbox. On a clean install that value will be %appdata%\REBOL (expanded). It should definitely not be under the user's temp dir, as the data in the temp dir gets deleted pretty often, and the sandbox data isn't supposed to be.

7-Feb-2010 12:14:30
Carl: do you plan to update SDK as well or we will wait for 2.7.8 version?
Karl Rathensach
23-Feb-2011 19:52:15
re: rebol-view-278-3-1.exe

Under XP upon first run, here's what happens when choosing no install:

[1] A window prompting for install -- radio button choice

[2] Creation of folder \rebol under the folder referenced by the XP environment variable %APPDATA% (typically C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data

[3]Click through the license window and then the finish window -- WHICH KILLS THE SESSION!

[4] A USER FORCED relaunch of rebol informing preferences are not set, which when dismissed creates subfolders under C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\rebol. These subfolders are: \desktop \local \publc

Commentary: In essence, adding folders in places the user has lacks foreknowledge amounts to a de facto INSTALL! REBOL needs to get rid of this underhandedness immediately.

Here's how it should work:

[1] download rebol

[2] first time dialog box: install?

yes --> [1] add data folders under \user\local settings\application data\rebol

[2] tell the user where these folders are and what happened

no --> [1] add the user.r file in the same directory

[2] tell the user what the user.r file is and where it is

[3] skip to end

end -->

[1] ask user to launch the confusingly doubly named desktop | viewtop

[2] yes --> launch it, ask user to set email data

[3] no --> launch console

NOTICE: email never works in REBOL because there's no where to put in the email password and this causes huge frustration and disappointment for the user out of the box.


While I've waited patiently for REBOL 3, software promised to be delivered back in Summer of 2008, staffers of REBOL have yet to get REBOL 2 right.

That lack of email password UI design flaw has existed since at least REBOL 2.3, and no doubt forever.

Having to GOOGLE to find on an obscure mailing list an exchange of help about setting up email to work with GMAIL or even plain old POP3 and SMTP is no way market a product and make customers satisfied, even if the customers get the product for free.

Not sticking with one name and command for the desktop confuses. Is it the desktop, the viewtop or the top? If it's the desktop, why isn't the command to the REBOL interpreter defined by the function to run it view-desktop rather than viewtop?

Learn to walk before you learn to run.

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