ORB executables – Common questions

What is an ORB executable?orb_logo_127x127

An executable file that works natively on most modern Linux distros.

The goal is to create “next-gen smart Linux executables”

What is an ORB (on a technical level)?

An ORB acts as a “container” to easily deliver Apps to Linux systems.

An ORB is an ISO with an “autorun” script inside. It also has en ELF binary embedded into the ISO Header, to make it appear as a native executable on Linux distros.

For more info see: ORB Specification

Is ORB intended to replace package managers like apt/dnf?

No. Not at all.

In fact, we are 100% behind the idea of package managers.

Its just that some things can’t be done with package managers, like Portable Apps, so we want to provide an addition to the existing Linux infrastructure.

How does ORB compare to SNAP/Flatpak?

Different projects with different goals: Our goal is to have “next-gen user-friendly executables”.

Both SNAP and Flatpak work with the concept of “packages” that need to be “installed”, ORBs can just be runned/executed (without haivng to install anything on the system), which allows for things like Portable Apps

Having said that, we support both SNAP and Flatpak and think they are great projects

We will also be adding support for both SNAP and Flatpak files in ORB Creator.

Is ORB designed/intended to replace “traditional” ELF binaries?

Not at all.

“Traditional” ELF executables are great from a technical point of view. The goal of ORB is simply to build on top of that and have an user-friendly executable format that is easy to use both on the web and offline (via CD/DVD/USB/etc)

Do I need to install ORB Launcher to run ORB executables?

No, ORB Launcher is 100% optional.

ORB executables behave like native Linux executables, see instructions on how to run an ORB

Does an ORB contains all the dependencies of a particular program?

No, not necessarily.

An ORB is just a “delivery format”. Think of it like a physical CD.

In fact, an ORB might not even contain any program code inside: an ORB might contain just a script to install a particular program from the “official repositories” or a script to add a PPA/repository to the system and install the program from there.

Will you keep supporting Native/Basic Mode?

Yes, we plan to keep supporting the Native/Basic Mode “forever”.

How can I package my software into an ORB?

You can use ORB Creator