Novell, hoping to ape the success of Apple's app store, has opened a gallery featuring builds of its SUSE Appliance Platform.
The SUSE Gallery will offer access to the work of 80,000 users and over 5,000 independent software vendors (ISVs), said Joanna Rosenberg, ISV marketing manager for SUSE Appliance, but the comparisons to the App store may be far-fetched.
Apps are often interfaces to a single Web site, or at the minimum programs that do one thing very well. As Google has proven they can be built with a point-and-click interface.
A build is something completely different. It's a software stack meant to emulate an entire system, an entire stack including the operating system. Rosenberg said she has already seen stacks with games and browsers, but it's a stretch to call the result an app store.
Still, the site will prove very useful to ISVs, who can now build client mirrors and then point customers to a one-click installation service. Corporations can also mirror Linux desktop builds on the system and have technical staff manage the process.
Novell plans a contest to publicize the gallery, with separate categories for community and commercial builds, and an independent panel of judges. The contest, in turn, will be publicized through banner ads and "traditional social media avenues," Rosenberg said, like Twitter and Facebook.