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To: gentoo-dev@g.o
From: Cedric Veilleux <cedric@...>
Subject: Re: GUI installer
Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2003 05:23:26 -0400
Why not simply use gentoo's livecd?

The livecd can boot the user into a fully loaded console or X workstation, 
with all the tools needed.

The installer could be an additional tool on the liveCD system.. Anybody knows 
a GUI abstration toolkit that can generate either terminal based or X based 
interface, depending on what's available at runtime?

This way the same installer could be used if X is not working or can't be 

In both environment (terminal / X), multitasking would be possible so 
experienced users could perform manual tasks while the installer is waiting 
for input..

Just my 2 cents,


Le 13 Avril 2003 04:49, Jeff Rose a écrit :
> Well, I'm glad to see that people are interested.  After doing some
> initial research I have some thoughts.  First, we should decide on whether
> we want to have a terminal or X based installer.  Does anyone know how
> well the generic vesa driver works for X?  I personally have battled with
> X so many times that I'm not sure I think its worth it for an installer.
> (Although we could just use the RedHat stuff for autodetection etc. if we
> want to go that direction.)  Besides X we could use ncurses dialog
> widgets or another terminal gui package.  I was thinking it would be cool
> to use somethine lighter than X like svgalib.  I have no experience with
> it and don't know how cross platform (or cross video card) it is, but it
> could be a cool solution if a decent widget set is put on top of it.  I'm
> not sure if this would lead to more or less work than using X.
> 	As for choosing stages, that should be a decision made by the user
> at install time.  We can very briefly explain how the system works and let
> them do what they please.  For the complete novice we can basically have
> the "do everything for me" button.  For the supreme hacker we can let them
> have it all while still taking care of mundane details.  (For example,
> they could choose what file systems they want to use on what partitions,
> but that would just be a selection dialog rather than having to type the
> commands etc...)  It might be nice if the installer can be exited at any
> point so people have the ability to get things rolling quickly but then
> tweak things out to their hearts content once its where they want it.
> 	One of the major pains in the redhat like installers deals with
> package selection.  I think it is ridiculous to give people a list of a
> thousand packages and tell them to pick.  Especially since the package
> documentation is horrible.  Most people probably wouldn't know that its
> important for them to have the e2fsprogs installed, for example.  So, this
> is the portion of the installer where I see the most room for innovation.
> Especially since gentoo has such a unique package system, we should really
> try to enable the user as much as possible, rather than just hucking a
> bunch of packages into the mix.  I'm still working on ideas, but we should
> experiment with all kinds of stuff to get this stage really smoothed out.
> 	This idea of processor detection makes me think that a whole lot
> of detection could go on if we wanted it to.  The thing is detection is
> useless unless you can act on what you have detected.  Changing some CPU
> related compiler flags is one thing, but what about detecting network,
> sound, video, raid, scsi, firewire, printers etc.  This could all get very
> tricky real fast.  What about using RedHats kudzu?
> Peace,
> Jeff
> On Sun, 13 Apr 2003, Derek J. Belrose wrote:
> > The only problem I see with doing this is how to represent it in a user
> > friendly, yet power user accessible fashion.  Maybe if you are using
> > anaconda, you could have the power user abilities under "Amazing super
> > power user" setting :)
> >
> > Grabbing the processor isn't difficult, build a small database of known
> > processors and compare it to /proc/cpuinfo.
> >
> > At this point, what would you use for a install?  Stage1, 2 or 3?  Stage
> > 3 would be the quickest in my opinion as well giving the user a really
> > good launching pad for an optimized system.
> >
> > Cliff Free wrote:
> > >I think a GUI installer would be great if done correctly.  The
> > >interface, obviously, should be easy to use, but in the spirit of
> > >Gentoo, shouldn't limit the user with what he can do.  On a side note, I
> > >also think it would be cool to have the ability to detect the processor
> > >type(s) and include some optimization flags for the detected
> > >processor(s) (I also feel this feature should be able to be toggled so
> > >hard-core power-users would still have the option to fine-tune to their
> > >heart's content, and that by default the feature would be OFF.  Maybee
> > >the detection system would only augment CFLAGS and CXXFLAGS in
> > >make.conf. and/or make.conf settings would override what's detected.)
> > >Just my 2 cents worth.  Doing this correctly could prove to be a
> > >daunting task.
> > >
> > >On Sun, 2003-04-13 at 01:38, Derek J. Belrose wrote:
> > >>Is the Mandrake install system based on RedHat's anaconda?  If it is,
> > >>it's nicely written python...but you'll have to seriously hack it to
> > >> get rid of the neat little rpm stuff :)
> > >>
> > >>I'd be willing to help out a bit on this too...gotta get it going for
> > >>Gentoo-Sparc :)
> > >>
> > >>Derek
> > >>
> > >>Justin Whitney wrote:
> > >>>I think some or all of Mandrake's install system is under GPL as well,
> > >>>so you might want to check that out.
> > >>>
> > >>>--Justin
> > >>>
> > >>>On Fri, 2003-04-11 at 19:04, Jeff Rose wrote:
> > >>>>Hello,
> > >>>>	I'm pretty new to gentoo, but I am an instant convert.  Just a
> > >>>>few months of emerge bliss and now I'm an avid supporter.  Anyway,
> > >>>> I'm thinking about starting a summer project and I'm pondering the
> > >>>> idea of a gui installer.  I've been looking around a bit and it
> > >>>> doesn't look like anyone is working on one.  Is that true?  If there
> > >>>> isn't already a project then I think I'll give it a whirl.  I know,
> > >>>> I know, gentoo is so great because it allows you to customize and
> > >>>> tweak the hell out of everything. That is completely true.  So, an
> > >>>> installer would have to allow just as much but it could take care of
> > >>>> the mundane details for those who aren't interested or knowledgable
> > >>>> enough.
> > >>>>	I haven't been around to see what people discuss in terms of the
> > >>>>installer so I'm sorry if this is all stuff that you have gone over
> > >>>>hundreds of times.  Even more minimal than a gui installer, have you
> > >>>>thought about adding more scripts to do the standard directory setup,
> > >>>>download, chroot... type of stuff?
> > >>>>	What do you think?
> > >>>>
> > >>>>-Jeff
> > >>>>
> > >>>>
> > >>>>--
> > >>>>gentoo-dev@g.o mailing list
> > >>>
> > >>>--
> > >>>gentoo-dev@g.o mailing list
> > >>
> > >>--
> > >>gentoo-dev@g.o mailing list
> >
> > --
> > gentoo-dev@g.o mailing list
> --
> gentoo-dev@g.o mailing list

gentoo-dev@g.o mailing list

Re: GUI installer
-- Derek J. Belrose
Re: GUI installer
-- Jeff Rose
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