The new Gentoo installer project is underway. This email should serve as
a quick rundown of where we're at, what we've done, where we want to go,
and how we're going to get there.
The initial infrastructure for the installer project is just about
there. We now have a mailing list (if you hadn't noticed), and an
official channel on IRC (freenode) - #gentoo-installer. As of yet,
there's no project page, but I'm sure that will come in time. Maybe
we'll hijack a member of the documentation team to help with that.
Currently, we have a number of people, Gentoo devs and non-devs,
involved or interested in the project. Two of the three installer
projects have "signed on" to work together and hopefully the third will
as well. Our two desktop co-leads are also involved in defining features
and requirements, as well as other Gentoo devs from server, portage
tools, and other teams. A number of non-developers (and / or soon to be
developers) are also helping in various ways.
What We're Doing:
You probably know the idea - we're trying to bring together three
projects and create a complete installer that covers desktop systems as
well as automated server deployment.
As it stands, we've hashed out a number of requirements and features as
well as some potentials for the installer. While an official list is not
complete, here's a very brief (and most certainly INCOMPLETE) list of
what we have:
- Pluggable front ends (text, ncurses, gtk, qt, whatever)
- Pluggable, override-able architecture support (x86, ppc, sparc, etc.)
- Automated deployment (ala RH's Kickstart or Sun's Jumpstart)
- No loss (or as absolutely little as possible) of flexibility from the
- Atomic run of all commands so users can freely experiment with
options prior to installation.
- Intelligent defaults.
We have a few documents that cover what is going on. I STRONGLY
recommend that you read them if you're interested in the project as a
spectator. If you want to contribute, please consider it required
reading as it will answer some initial questions that you will have.
What We Need:
We need to do the following...
- Solidify the team, both operational and development, and their roles.
- Get a team of willing testers.
- Get some people willing to do documentation, either from our doc team
- Get a code repository going. Since non-devs may (as in "might," not
"can") participate in actual development, the repository may need to be
hosted on non-Gentoo servers.
- Decide to what level non-devs should participate (mainly, can they
- Complete high(er) level design documents that all devs agree on.
- Code like the wind.
- Test like the dickens.
Hopefully, this will help get the ball rolling, so to speak. Most of
this stuff is just rehashed from #gentoo-installer (which, once again,
we invite you to join), but it should help as a nagging reminder.
No doubt this is a button-pusher of a topic. We ask that all comments be
constructive and respectful, even if you disagree, as at times we all
(Oh yea, and please read that doc!)