If the author issues a new version, all he need do is update the products.html file to point to the new zip, cmossv33.zip. In theory then, all obsolete copies in the universe will eventually be automatically updated.
The PAD (Portable Application Description) file contains the masterdistribution site, plus other information. So it supeceeds this notion.
If the author wants to totally obsolete a program, rather that update it, he can redirect the URL to a dummy file called discontinued.zip which must actually must exist on some website.
End users can then check if they have the latest version. Install software can automatically check if it has the most recent version. Automated checker programs might just insist on a zip file name match, or a more precise date/time/size match. It is possible for a program to determine this without actually downloading the potentially new version. If the current version is obsolete, the new version can be automatically downloaded.
The scheme also works manually without any special software. The end user just views the MasterDistribution.site URL in his web browser and decides for himself it is newer and read about the new features to decide if he wants the update.
A redistributor can periodically check if it has the latest version of all the zips he distributes. If not, it can automatically delete the old and download the new, which includes a potentially different MasterDistribution.site URL.
For this to be fully automated, any descriptive information (e.g. keywords, *.DIZ) must be embedded inside the zip so that it too will be automatically updated. One major problem is different redistribution sites want different descriptive information. We need a global format that is easy to prepare, that permits embedded HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) for pretty formatting the descriptive information and that allows for site-specific extension keywords.
The scheme also allows for virtual redistributors. They don’t have any files on their webserver to download. They just post the URLS from the various MasterDistribution.site zips they want to distribute. They don’t need do anything to maintain a link to the latest version.
The scheme has several weaknesses.
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