Forum OpenACS Q&A: Re: OpenACS / VMWare Initial Login
I'm glad to hear that the VMWare image helped you out.
The package would be undeniably more useful if it contained installations of supporting software. I've avoided this because it multiplies the maintenance load, and because Oasis without this software still fulfills my goal of introducing OpenACS to Windows users without subjecting them to a course in Unix system administration.
However, there are two improvements I'm considering to make Oasis something that can take a user from kicking the tires to actual openacs deployment, as you suggest. First, I think it'd be better to go with a distribution that made acquiring the extra packages beyond aolserver+pg+tcl as painfree as possible... this is probably either debian or gentoo, because of the way they handle dependencies so much better than rpm. By the time I get around to doing it, Fedora's apt-get might actually work well enough, but I suspect debian's will always be better/more supported. Anyway, I'm slightly more familiar with debian, so that's probably what I'll start with.
The second change is to migrate from VMWare desktop to the open source coLinux virtualization software. coLinux is implementing a lot of VMWare Workgroup feature required to actually *run* production Linux services on your Windows box, as opposed to just developing, trying or testing them.
I haven't had a chance to do any hands-on work with it yet, but I think it's rapidly approaching the maturity required for me to make the switch.