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SourceForge's Hottest Five Apps 141

Posted by kdawson
from the top-of-the-heap dept.
davidmwilliams points us to his story up on IT Wire about the top five most active open source projects on SourceForge. (Sourceforge.net and Slashdot are both owned by SourceForge Inc.) He writes, "It explains what they do and why they're useful. Most of these will be new to most people but all are definitely bursting with potential."
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SourceForge's Hottest Five Apps

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  • by The Real Toad King (981874) <toadking@toadking.com> on Thursday June 21, 2007 @10:38AM (#19594469) Homepage
    All they did was take the most active projects this week [sourceforge.net] and commented on them.

    What was the point in this?
  • Stellarium (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ajs (35943) <ajs@ a j s . com> on Thursday June 21, 2007 @10:47AM (#19594625) Homepage Journal
    Stellarium is right up there with Celestia [shatters.net] for outstanding astro simulations. I use the two together when planning a night of stargazing or meteor watching in the mountains, and highly recommend them to anyone. Both have somewhat odd UIs to get used to, but it's one of the rare cases where the app itself is so uniquely useful that the UI is a secondary concern.
    • Seriously though.... no scripted screen caps? That would have saved me hours of work for my Astronomy class this semester.
  • SourceForge is too big now. If you start a project and have a support request--good luck getting it answered. Having fought with their CVS implementation for a few weeks, I abandoned sourceforge for GoogleCode. Much easier.
    • by liquidpele (663430) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:04AM (#19594873) Journal
      Not just that. They have about a million dead/junk projects, but those all still show up in the searches! Projects that have NO CODE show up in the searches! How the hell does that happen?

      As an example, search for "calendar". 2 of the first 3 returned have no code, and no website.
      • by Otter (3800) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:12AM (#19595035) Journal
        As an example, search for "calendar". 2 of the first 3 returned have no code, and no website.

        Yes, we refer to those as "Outlook killers".

        Stellarium, by the way, is a superb piece of software and it's good to see it get attention even via a route as clueless as this article.

      • by _xeno_ (155264) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @01:02PM (#19596777) Homepage Journal

        The problem is you can't cancel projects. I know I've got a few projects on SourceForge that I never intend to do anything with. One of them even has some code.

        In any case, I've long since lost both the password for that SourceForge account and no longer have access to the email address I used to create it, so those projects will remain forever, clogging up SourceForge despite the fact that they're long dead.

        I don't think SourceForge should just delete dead projects, but it would be nice if they'd move them into a "SourceForge Archive" or something after a project fails to see any activity or downloads for, say, a year. Leave them accessible, but stop returning them in searches unless a "search archives" option is set.

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by jiriki (119865)
          Well there is: "Development Status : 7 - Inactive".
          This is probably exactly what you are searching for.

          (Won't help you with your login though...)
        • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward
          Actually, last February, SourceForge implemented a policy to reduce the number of dead projects. It works something like this. When a project has no activity at all for (something like) 6 months, a notice is sent to the developer(s). I think they have something like 30 days to respond to keep the project active. Beyond that it is removed from the actual database but can be reinstated upon request for a certain period of time. Beyond that time the project is permanently deleted. (Note: I'm pretty sure I saw
        • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward
          If the project has no other members and no code, or nothing other than the initial CVS check-in, they will delete a project if asked. I've done it.

          Of course if you can't log in to do so, then their reasons for not deleting the project are pretty obvious. At any rate, SourceForget's searching and browsing completely sucks, and their activity measurement metric isn't very good either. You get what you pay for I guess.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Sorry, but your spreading incorrect information here:

          First of, it *is* possible to cancel projects. In the admin section, there is a whole section dedicated specifically to "Project Removal". In addition, you can takeover existing orphaned projects, there is a support document explaining how.

          Secondly: If you lost your password or do not have access to your old email address anymore: They have a whole support document dealing just with that topic, too: .

          Finally, projects which never made any code rel

      • That's because the SourceForge CEO liked to give talks boasting about how many projects they hosted.

        Most of the dead projects ought to be moved to something like "SourceForge archive", where they remain as a historical record and are searchable, but can no longer be updated and are just static pages.

        • by idontgno (624372)

          Hmmm. Maybe our little town could have avoided annexation by the big city next door if we could have counted the inhabitants of the local graveyards in our population.

          C'mon, SF, get it together. Dead is DEAD. A project with no activity and no ability to contact the principals needs to AT LEAST get "archived".

          Geesh. That's why I never search SF itself for anything; I take pointers from external sources like recent mail-list traffic. That way you know the project mentioned isn't merely dust and a bad smell.

    • by anomalous cohort (704239) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @02:14PM (#19597835) Homepage Journal

      Having fought with their CVS implementation for a few weeks

      I recently started a project [sourceforge.net] over at sourceforge and I think that what they provide is really great. They give you all kinds of features like forums, news, trackers, and web site statistics via RSS. They will host a web site to promote your project. That hosting includes the ability to run a web application written in perl and access to your own database on a MySql server. With that much capability, I implemented the project web site using the source code of the project itself.

      You also get ssh, sftp, and cvs (via ssh) access. I haven't run into any problems with updating the content. There is a web interface for downloading code but you have to use cvs for uploading. I don't know what problem the original poster was running into but I found no difficulties with it.

      • Okay, I'll elaborate. Granted, SF gives you a lot of bells. But, although I got my SF site to store my key, I could not get a connection. I sent in a support request to SF and they replied RTFM. Well, I followed up with that manual, and it led to three more. That's all fine but it just did not work for me. GoogleCode--on the other hand--was just plain easy to use. If it worked for you--great--but it didn't work for me. I've used SSH and CVS for years but this was hosed up. In any case, I'm happy at GoogleCo
        • I guess that it doesn't really matter since you moved on but just in case anyone else is running into this, did you set the CVS_RSH environment variable to ssh? Also, there is no need to store your key at SF.

          I'm using a RHAT 9 machine when I connect. That might also make a difference.

          • Wrong you are. SF expects you to upload your SSH key. Please refer to this link [googlepages.com]. The only way SF allow you to access their site as a developer is by setting your public key with SF and then trying to connect using PuTTY. Pain in the ass. I could never get a connection and when I asked for some support, they basically ignored my request. They have that right--granted--as I'm not paying for any services. But I also have the right to take my project elsewhere--as I chose.
            • I guess you are now going to explain to me how I can easily check in my changes without uploading that key? Since you are the one who can never get the connection and since I am the one who has no problems, maybe you're the one who is wrong. As they say, the proof is in the pudding.

              The advantage of using shared SSH keys is that you don't have to type in your password with each CVS command. It is not a requirement, however.

              • Obviously, if I didn't get in, something was wrong. But the way I read it--to have developer access to your CVS tree, you must upload that key. They did not offer me any alternative. I tried for weeks to get through that. In the meantime, I heard about GoogleCode and then I was very easily able to upload my source using SVN. Did you check out the image I linked to? That is the actual page where they show the key I was finally able to upload. But it did not work. In short, I was only offered to use the SSH-g
      • I have a small project on sourceforge as well and I had a lot of problems learning the CVS system. The program Tourtoise CVS helped me a lot!
  • by Joe Snipe (224958)
    SourceForge.net and Slashdot are both owned by OSTG [ostg.com].

    Also, this is neither news (let alone for nerds) or stuff that matters.
    • Actually its no longer the OSTG. Apparently they renamed themselves yet again and they're now SourceForge Inc.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by dintech (998802)
      News from CEOs, stuff that flatters.
    • SourceForge.net and Slashdot are both owned by OSTG.

      Alternatively, you could RTFSummary which said the same thing (but more accurately). You know, in case you forgot.

  • Go Azureus! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mattgreen (701203) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @10:58AM (#19594785)
    Let me tell you, I've always wanted a Java P2P client. My biggest irk with uTorrent is it doesn't take up enough resources. Honestly, I can't believe the developers of uTorrent had the nerve to not put an entire plug-in architecture into it. They're totally missing the boat here.

    Besides, everyone KNOWS that the more design patterns you use, the better your program is!
    • Re:Go Azureus! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by twistedsymphony (956982) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:52AM (#19595783) Homepage
      Despite your snaky cynicism (which is probably what got your the flamebait mod) I tend to agree with you sentiment. I ditched Azures months ago for uTorrent due mostly to it's unnecessary bloat. Are there even any worth while plug-ins for it?

      For the type of app that generally runs consistently in the background bloat is the last thing you want, similarly a pretty interface isn't all that necessary based on the amount of time most users will actually spend looking at it.
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Silentknyght (1042778)
        I thought the benefit was that Azureus was blatantly open source, where you could (potentially) see the code and ensure that it wasn't doing anything shady. I've heard uTorrent slandered because it is not open and that the (new?) owner of uTorrent has some dubious associations with anti-P2P associations.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          Funny you should mention the Open source aspect. I'm all for open source (I even make donations to several projects) but on more than one occasion I received tips from various sources to "not upgrade to the latest Azureus because of..." it seems that regularly people would slip trojans, viruses, spyware and other nasties into the official releases. It was enough make me turn off the auto-update feature and wait for the "all clear". Though I never really looked into any of those claims, it certainly made by
        • by Res3000 (890937)
          The new owner of uTorrent is BitTorrent, Inc.

          So uTorrent is now owned by Bram Cohen [utorrent.com], the one who wrote the protocol.

          • So uTorrent is now owned by Bram Cohen, the one who wrote the protocol.
            And since it does not appear to be open source, and since Brahm Cohen has aided the MPAA in the past, http://www.slyck.com/news.php?story=1006 [slyck.com] , that leaves me to be extra cautious / paranoid. Use your own judgment, of course.
    • by Kalewa (561267) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:53AM (#19595809)
      Tell me about it. I switched to uTorrent awhile ago and now all of my RAM is just...sitting around. It's not even doing anything. I mean come on, where's the bloated interface and memory leaks I'd become so accustomed to? Hell, I don't even have to change processor priority on uTorrent when I want to play a game. I want a program I have to maintain.
      • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

        by Shotgun (30919)
        Since the summary says that it only run on Windows, I'm sure the virus writers are at your door to fulfill your request.

        • by BobNET (119675)

          Since the summary says that it only run on Windows, I'm sure the virus writers are at your door to fulfill your request.

          Thanks to WINE, uTorrent is running on my Linux box at this very moment. And it's still using fewer resources than Azureus would...

    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Let me tell you, I've always wanted a C++ P2P client. My biggest urk with Azureus is that it's just not fast enough. Some people may like to open their P2P client and let it just sit in the background, but I like to open and close it all day long, so that startup time is very important to me. I also like looking at my system resources and marveling and how much RAM I'm not using, so it's very important that my P2P client uses 500 kB of RAM rather than 4 MB when it's minimized. Why, that's almost enough
      • Mod parent up.
    • by Builder (103701)
      Yeah, but... Azureus has one awesome thing going for it. I can have it running on my server at home, and using a widget on my mac, I can kick off a new torrent. So I have all the happiness of my mac, but my machine at home is doing the downloading, and next time I'm in the world, I can pick the stuff up.

      If I didn't have that, my link would be REALLY busy one week in 4, and totally idle the rest of the time.

      I'm also prepared to live with Azureus because it offers me a feature neither ktorrent nor utorrent of
  • by jshriverWVU (810740) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:05AM (#19594881)
    I've only heard of 3 of these, and only used 2. The rest seem more geared toward businsess and not the end user.

    Would be nice to see a top 10 user geared list.

    • by kalirion (728907)
      What do you mean "Not for end user"? Every project that's meant to be used is geared towards an end user. If a business uses it, the business is an end user. If the developers use it, they are the end users.
      • End user being average joe sixpack sitting at home typing an email. Perhaps there's a better term for that.
        • by th3space (531154)

          End user being average joe sixpack sitting at home typing an email. Perhaps there's a better term for that.

          Hmmmm...Joe Sixpack, perhaps? ;)
        • by rduke15 (721841)
          So you feel the article should have been about 4 email clients and a beer opener?
  • nothing new (Score:3, Informative)

    by asabjorn (903413) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:38AM (#19595529)
    For me Datamations list was much more interesting since they spend time digging up new and upcoming projects I did not know about like kdenlive (kind of like the Diva video editor, but not a dead project). http://itmanagement.earthweb.com/osrc/article.php/ 3678071 [earthweb.com]
  • by shadowrat (1069614) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:40AM (#19595553)

    "Azureus is the #1 application on SourceForge today. It needs little introduction and is both known and used throughout the world. "

    Well, that's all the information i need to know! Where do i sign up?

  • Is anybody using this in a production environment? I've been trying to get HP OpenView implimented and it is one big fat PITA. All I really need to do at this point is monitor server disk/partition usage. It would also be nice to inventory the network but that is a secondary objective. Any suggestions for an easy to use tool. Will Zenoss do it?
  • Most useful from SF (Score:3, Informative)

    by tkdtaylor (1039822) on Thursday June 21, 2007 @11:49AM (#19595723)
    The one program I always download from SF is filezilla [sourceforge.net] (client) and recently I set up the server version to replace the broken default IIS FTP server.
    Both client and server are working great, highly recommended free open source FTP client and server.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by TClevenger (252206)
      Yup. My big three (that I put on any Windows machine I own) are:

      1. FileZilla. Great FTP and SFTP client.

      2. TUGZip. Excellent WinZip replacement.

      3. PDFCreator. Makes PDFs out of the output of any program with a "Print..." option.

  • Their CSS failed to load for me. If nothing else, it's a nice demonstration on how CSS can fail gracefully...
    • Yup, mine too - I'm not sure if its because of NoScript or not, though I kinda doubt it, as I've had for example the HP site do this without NoScript installed (hell, this was before I even found noscript)...
  • Whoever submitted this should be shot, whoever accepted it should be tarred and feathered.
  • From the article's explanation of Ajax:

    Google Earth is a web app. What makes it so snappy is Ajax.

    I've never actually used Google Earth, but I was under the impression that it does NOT run inside a web browser. So why would it use javascript? Maybe they meant to use Google Maps as an example?
  • No way. (Score:3, Funny)

    by thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) <marc...paradise@@@gmail...com> on Thursday June 21, 2007 @06:32PM (#19601437) Homepage Journal
    This can't be a real web site. Where are the ugly colors, the Flash, the heavy graphics, for the gods' sakes, WHERE ARE THE ADS?!
  • I really like sourceforge.

    I know that when I'm searching, googling if you will, for an app to do something, if a sourceforge link comes up, the software I get from there will be open source, and (maybe I am making a big jump here) virus and spyware free as a result.

    Am I lazy because I can't be stuffed researching too much about the apps I need? Maybe. But sourceforge is double plus good if you ask me.
  • Never heard of zk before, but their demos [zkoss.org] are very uninspiring.

    Now this is an impressive ajax framework demo [nextapp.com].
  • is what they ought to call it. Takes forever to load no matter where I'm browsing from.

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