I am consulting on a software project which is database intensive and
the interface is web-based. Users can download an installation package
which, if necessary, installs Microsoft IIS, some free Microsoft
database server (I think it's a stripped-down version of MS-SQL) and
machines and only works in IE. Oh, and it needed certain tweaks or
patches to make it work under Vista; the version which worked under XP
didn't work 100% in Vista.
As one who appreciates standards and not being tied to one technology,
especially browsers, and having seen the database design and the
actual app in action, plus lots of insight into how difficult it is to
maintain, upgrade, etc., my immediate thought was: it must be possible
to do it better by adhering to web standards as much as possible
(rather than as little as possible), break the dependence on MS
I'm a huge fan of RoR but still relatively new to it, but based on my
readings (Agile Web Dev for Rails) and investigations, I thought that
this app would be perfect for RoR.
But, before I suggest making a switch which will take lots of time and
cost lots of money, I need to know how easy it would be for anyone to
take a basic office computer with just XP or Vista (or Mac!) and
install all that is necessary: a web server, a database, Ruby and
Rails, and the app itself?
What would need to happen is:
1. User downloads my-app-install.zip
2. User unzips download
3. User runs install-my-app.bat or something like that.
4. User opens any browser and enters: my-app.local (or whatever) and
the app starts.
Is there a way to do this with a RoR solution?
Note: This web-based app would only be run locally, not as a general
website available to all.
I'd be really interested if anyone has done something like this or if
anyone has some thoughts on the matter.
If I'm not being clear, please let me know - I'll try to rephrase.