Ardour on Windows: help make it real
Thanks to several years of slow and steady work, Ardour now compiles and runs on all versions of the Windows operating system. For several months, we've offered ready-to-run versions via our nightly build site . We're almost ready to release Ardour 4.0, which will make it the first major release of the program that could run on Windows. We'd love to see Ardour running on Windows more and more.
... there's a problem. We don't want to just give Windows users the ready-to-run version of Ardour and then cast them aside. We'd like to offer them the same personable, timely support that users on Linux and OS X have received for years. The problem is that the existing Ardour developers and community cannot do this. We do not have the time or expertise to assist Windows users with Windows-specific problems.
So, we're looking for a new community of users who are willing and capable of bootstrapping a support environment for Ardour on Windows. You will be able to replicate any parts of the existing online infrastructure that we use - web sites, forums, IRC channels, mailing lists - in any way you wish (without any costs). But there will need to be people around who will answer questions in whatever online channels you establish, enough people to cover a significant part of the world's timezones. People who will respond in a timely manner to email and web forum questions. You know the rest.
In exchange for this, we can discuss how you can get some slice of whatever extra income we receive from Windows users. I don't have any firm numbers in mind yet, and it is far from clear how much extra income there will be. All we know for sure is that Ardour on Windows will be a LOT more successful if users on that platform have interested, personable, helpful and timely support.
Ideally, it would be a group of 3-4 people with spread-out timezones and/or personal time habits. You don't need to know a lot about Ardour itself - general questions that are not platform specific are things we can handle with our existing support infrastructure - but you do need to understand installation, device usage and other platform-specific issues that can arise when using Ardour on Windows. If you're interested, please join the ardour-dev mailing list and send us a message. If enough of you can step up and get coordinated, we can make the Windows build official releases and help make Ardour on Windows a useful reality for lots of people.