After playing with this plugin framework for a bit I just realized that I've completely misunderstood how it all works. I assumed that my plugin BPL would just bloat with all the libraries it needed and my EXE would be nicely bloated with all the libraries it needed and that was that. But of course that's not the case at all and I'm going to have to distribute 50 - 100 + bpl files to get the two to work together and these are all going to have to be maintained each time I upgrade my TMS, NexusDB, DevExpress, Report Builder Pro and many more. This is a logistical nightmare and makes going back to EXE addons that use command line params etc seem positively fun. Please tell me I've got the wrong end of the stick.
The TMS Plugin Framework is built around the concept of applications working with runtime packages where the plugin system itself is one of these runtime packages. This means that it follows the rules of deployment of any generic Delphi app with runtime packages.
Yes I now understand that, and at some point in the distant past I already knew it and have forgotten how it all hangs together. Its my mistake, but I think the marketing of the TMS Plugin Framework should make it very obvious that implementing it will require a significant re-think of of how the main application will be have to be deployed and maintained. As it is, this is going to introduce more problems than it solves for me right now and so I'm going to try and write my own framework using old fashioned DLLs. Sorry to be negative - I do like the concept but its just not very practical.