I was thinking of a solution to the difficulties of building the latest HISE version and an app export of one´s instruments on all 3 platforms (win, linux, mac). It took extensive digging to just install the Mac version for me, even though I am an advanced mac user.
The solution I´ve been thinking of is a virtual machine environment, like a macOS or Linux / Windows made with VirtualBox. It´s free and one can install an os from a ISO file and compress the completed and pre-installed operating system´s files using 7zip for small sharing sizes.
(this will just be the pros/cons I can think of and my thoughts on easier dev down the line, using VMs. Feel free to punish my notes )
Virtual Machines / Virtual Operatingsystems / VMs
If you are not familiar with VMs (virtual machines, which most of you probably are) the host operating system is the machine that VirtualBox is running on. The guest operating system is the virtual one running in a window displaying the entire operating system as an app on your computer.
As a virtual operating system can be set to have a minimal size and only use the amount actually used by the guest OS. That way, once the required software has been installed (IPP, xcode/MS Visual Studio/Linux equivalent, VST/AU libs) and HISE has been built, the VM can then be shut down and compressed into a .7zip document and posted to a place on the internet where it will remain for the longest time possible. Either to a torrent network or to a free account of a sync app that do not delete inactive files. Such as sync.com.
- anyone could spin up HISE in a newer version than he/she has on his normal machine, without having to upgrade or change files
- anyone could test HISE out in a proper environment, discarding audio drivers (which are normally the issue in VMs)
- anyone could build HISE in ANY of the 3 platforms that it is supposed to be able to be built on, without the extensive knowledge of handling... say a linux environment coming from Windows (which would most likely be quite a journey)
- testing HISE builds in revisions would be easier, given you got enough space on your SSD (or HDD :/) to keep revisions and versions
- exchanging builds of an entire build environment is possible and usable to all, with the proper documentation.
- when working with others, a developer could build on all systems for a client to test out directly
- getting into Virtual Machines could prove to be more lengthy than building HISE natively, for some people.
- a virtual machine does not constitute a complete computer in terms of audio input/output for real-time testing
- installing a virtual machine is not always straight forward and there are many formats available
- downloading torrent files from other builds online would be a risk in general use, as malware could be installed. (for existing torrents that are not from this community)
So, I know lots of you probably already use either a virtualized environment or tripple-boot your systems or have separate ones on either different hard drives or systems entirely. But for a lone gunman with nothing but one laptop and even a single partitioned system form Apple stock-style, that could prove to be impossible.
I use virtual operating systems along side the partitioning on my machines to run multiple versions of macOS, but I have only once been able to install a Linux virtual machine. I guess settings matter when installing a VM but the point here is to bypass as many of the unnecessary steps in that as possible, by making one basic file, a fresh OS for each platform, for all to use and then build on if or when you need a new build or try out your work in a specific version of windows, mac or Linux.
Moreover, this is not something one person will be able to maintain, it would just be a growing number of verifiable builds down the line, as new updates come all the time to all platforms.
Licensing and stuff
Your Macintosh computer comes with your own license that is downloaded from your own mac from your apple account, making that available to all would be risky for the person in mind, the account owner. I do not think, however, that the DMG file inside the macOS installer retains any info of who you are as the originating account holder. The OS is most likely entirely "retail fresh" if you make a bootable installer using some tool, or the terminal. And thus the OS could be delivered as that same DMG to the community for use with a VM of your choice or using a pre-packaged VDI made in VirtualBox. I´m sure that this could be found on other forums as a trustable starting point.
Apple do not allow you to download older versions of macOS if you did not click on the download link in App Store application during the time when it was shipping or was in use and development, so unless that was the case there is no legal way for you to download that older version form Apple itself. Insane, I know. But if you did you can re-download it again as an .app installation file and test your product out in earlier versions of macOS and something like Logic Pro 10.3 or below.
These are things I know little about, apart from the Linux Manjaro Gnome I just installed on an older PC a few days ago. I know that most Linux distros share a lot, but that there are major releases and distros that are more pivotal in their content directions, like Suse, Debian, Ubuntu (is Debian? ). Well you see, where would a Mac-owner begin? Or a Windows dev? A preset environment would no doubt be very usable for a build for me and here´s where the licensing is already a non-issue.
Anyone in possession of a VM for a working build environment for a semi-new to new Linux environment is more than welcome to PM me.