Re: ISO download difficult
- Date: Tue, 05 Dec 2017 22:10:14 -0800
- From: Russ Allbery <rra@xxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: Re: ISO download difficult
Paul Wise <pabs@xxxxxxxxxx> writes:
> Of course not, that would be a ridiculous suggestion.
> I would wager that most devices have another OS installed before
> installing Debian. I propose that the process of installing Debian could
> be made easier if the Debian install process started with an app on that
> OS instead of manually choosing which d-i to download. These apps could
> also do all the setup that users currently have to do manually to get
> d-i to start. For example on Turris Omnia routers, you have to update
> the shipped u-boot before you can boot d-i off USB. On BIOS systems you
> have to press a magic key or navigate BIOS menus to figure out how to
> boot d-i.
> For devices that don't ship with an OS or Debian doesn't yet have an
> install bootstrap app, obviously d-i ISOs would still be available and
> users could manually download and run them, with or without the needed
I'm certainly fine to put work into this for those who want to use it, but
I never boot any existing OS before installing Debian, and I'm sure I'm
not alone. It's extremely useful to be able to install Debian on bare
metal (or a newly-replaced factory hard drive) or on a system whose
existing OS install is hopelessly broken.
We should also help people find easier-to-use non-free install images with
the required firmware to be able to bootstrap networking. The firmware
sideloading mechanism is inherently arcane and complex, even for
experienced Debian developers. I don't think asking people to use an
existing OS install is a sufficient alternative.
I'm of course 100% in favor of clearly labeling those images as
undesirable and pointing out the problems with them, but the current state
of the market (even apart from the acknowledgement that a lot of our users
do not regularly buy new computers at full price) makes non-free firmware
the only available choice for a lot of people.
Russ Allbery (rra@xxxxxxxxxx) <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>