Worst/Best/Wishes for GETTING Packages

Hi All,

We are working away on improvements to the package manager and want to make sure your voices are heard. Any comments you might have on what works, what doesn’t work, what would you like to see in the process of GETTING packages (issues around publishing are on a seperate thread)?

Thanks Much

The Dynamo Team

  1. Would love to see an update process. Something like "a new version of Clockwork is available".
  2. Better handling of dependencies. If a user has the latest version of the dependency installed, it would be great if Dynamo knew that.
  3. Graphs that let you know they have dependency and prompt to download or embed the nodes?
  4. Hyperlinking in the package description. GitHub, blogs etc.
that's a few of the ones I had in mind :)

I’d like the ability to “subscribe” to packages for updates (options for email notification and auto-update capability).

Also, the ability to download to a separate network location in addition to Appdata/Roaming folder (for the BIM manager crowd to download packages to one location for entire office) rather than having to copy manually from default download location.

Ben, I may be mistaken. But I think you can set your primary path as the network location and it will automatically download there.

yep the ability to know when packages have been updated. Currently the only way to find out is to search for the package each day and check. Kinda like the problem with the ‘notify me of follow-up replied via email’ button on the forum. Never works and needs to be fixed.


Also fixing the interface so its clear where to download, expand the menu and vote. There are a lot of negative votes simply because its confusing which makes it hard to tell the useful packages from the duds.

This is my (rather longish) wish list. Most of it has already been filed as an issue on GitHub:

  • [As mentioned above] Notify user that a package is deprecated or that there's a new version available or, as suggested above, a subscription mechanism (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/484 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/971 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/4384)
  • [As mentioned above] Stop installing outdated package versions without asking me first (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/3433 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/4384 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/5487)
  • Search filters for the package manager (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/793 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/2889 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/4384 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/5731)
  • Introduce a voting system that doesn't suck (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/3920)
  • Make the installation process for packages with dependencies less confusing (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/671)
  • [As mentioned above] Automatically find missing packages on opening a graph (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/1171 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/4474)
  • Include package manager search in node browser search - this would help you find nodes that you need but do not have yet. This would, of course, require the package manager search to also search through all individual node names and descriptions.
  • I'd like to know if a package contains binaries before deciding to install it
  • Easier access to package data sets (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/3261 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/5731)
  • Overhaul of the package manager website. Provide static URLs for packages and their maintainers. Make the site accessible to search engines. Also, some minor stuff mentioned here: https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/974 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/1121 & https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/1291
  • Deprecated packages should be represented differently in search results (https://github.com/DynamoDS/Dynamo/issues/481)

First, thank Zach for this space.

It may want to suggest certain packages to users. This could help the less experienced.

Ricardo Freitas

I think most guys cover most of the good points here.

I just want to add that there should be a compatibility check for the version of Dynamo vs the version of the package. If it isn’t compatible there should be a push notification.


How about getting rid of all the packages with “test” in the name? Right now they’re just cluttering things up. If deleting them straight away is too rash, maybe you could send a letter to the package maintainer notifying them that if they don’t reply within a week, the package will be deleted?

Once you’re done doing all those things, and not before, how about somehow evaluating node functionality in comparison to what has been published in other packages? It is not unheard of for a programmer to re-invent the wheel. Badly. But how would our poor programmer know a similar or better method existed if he called it by a different name, and used it for a different purpose? Right now that depends on happenstance, or very thorough searching. I for one do not always search while I’m thinking. I use what I know to make what I think, and in the process I sometimes find some new method already exists or find I now understand the description of a node where I passed it over before. Not an easy problem to tackle I think. Integration of uninstalled package nodes in standard search UI would go a long way.


I hate to disagree with you, as what you are proposing is going down a rabbit hole. There is too many ways to skin the cat as they say, so trying to filter out “the best” is not a viable exercise for the Dev team. I don’t think it’s time well spent. I might be wrong though. I would instead embrace the fact that you might do something one way, only to realize that someone has done it better or faster some time down the line, and come back to it. It’s a learning process. Skipping steps is never a good idea. :slight_smile:


Well, the OP did call for the WORST ideas as well, somethong the other suggestions were failing at in a rather spectacular way. I agree it is a rabbit hole. The problem is, I am no rabbit. I have no idea weather or not it would be navigable. Just asking the question.

But while we are on the subject of the attainable: could the UI do suggestions? Something like: "other people who used this node also used this node, in this configuration. "?

Looks like just another rabbit hole to me!

i’d like to “plus one” the suggestion for some sort of notification that a package has been updated. I’d also like to advocate for better descriptions of the packages (or at least links to descriptions)–I’m not in Dynamo every day and I forget what half the packages I have do (yes I could google it, but it would be handy to have this “inline”)