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Re: Finding firmware (and SHA sums etc), was Re: Linux Mint, Ubuntu, Arch Linux recognize my Acer Aspire S wifi, debian does not

On Wed 15 Mar 2017 at 20:27:08 (+0000), Brian wrote:
> On Wed 15 Mar 2017 at 13:44:39 -0500, David Wright wrote:
> > (Posted to debian-www as well.)
> > 
> > On Wed 15 Mar 2017 at 12:21:14 (-0500), Nicholas Geovanis wrote:
> > > Is it just me, or are the "unofficial" images hard to get to? For example
> > > the FAQ says "Sometimes, someone is kind enough to create unofficial
> > > non-free CDs. If you cannot find any links on this website, you can try
> > > asking on the debian-cd mailing list." Yet there is no link there to the
> > > unofficial pages. Yes Google finds them....
> > 
> > You are not alone. The problem as I see it is that it's easy to find
> > this page:
> > 
> > https://www.debian.org/distrib/netinst
> It is also just as easy to find
>  https://www.debian.org/CD/

Well, let's see how you get to the first of these two pages (call it
A) from Debian's home page. The first principal paragraph on the home
page starts:

        "Getting Started

"If you'd like to start using Debian, you can easily obtain a copy,
and then follow the installation instructions to install it."

What's more natural than to click on "obtain a copy".
Then you see "Download an installation image" and click on that,
to arrive at:


In contrast, to get to the other page (B), you have to read through
the menu options (in fine print), and _not_ click on "Network Install"
(which would take you straight to A), but choose the next item,
"CD/USB ISO images". When hovering over that link, the sight of
"https://www.debian.org/CD/"; might cause people to avoid it
because they don't want to burn a CD.

> and then
>  https://www.debian.org/CD/http-ftp/

Shame about the heading, no mention of USB images. Now scroll down
that page, and avoid clicking on the "network install" link (although
that might be your aim). Keep going to the paragraph headed CDs, with
the architecture links. No mention of USB here.

> which leads to
>  http://cdimage.debian.org/debian-cd/current/i386/iso-cd/
> without any right clicking or rubbing out. 

That's right. Page B is a better route to take, but the links to it
are less prominent, and less clearly labelled for someone who wants to
install over the net rather than burn or purchase CDs.

But irrespective of that, it would be sensible to make it as easy to
get from page A to http://cdimage.debian.org/debian-cd/current/i386/iso-cd/
without any right clicking or rubbing out, in the event that you get
drawn down this path. Whether that's a small proportion of people or a
large one seems irrelevant.

> > on which three options are given. When you click on an architecture,
> > the 2nd and 3rd options take you to directory pages. However, the
> > (most popular?) first option has ISO links¹ which you certainly don't
> > want to click on if you're playing by the rules.
> What rules are these?

Go back one page to https://www.debian.org/CD/http-ftp/ and
read the first paragraph. The one that's boxed, shaded and
has a lightbulb to draw attention to it:

"Please do not download CD or DVD images with your web browser the way
you download other files! The reason is that if your download aborts,
most browsers do not allow you to resume from the point where it failed."

> > If you copy the ISO link (right click it) into a browser's address bar
> > and rubout the ISO name itself, you'll get to (for i386):
> > 
> > http://cdimage.debian.org/debian-cd/current/i386/iso-cd/
> > 
> > This difficult-to-find page will not only satisfy those searching for
> > SHA sums, but it also has a paragraph headed:
> It is shown above that it is not difficult to find.

Relatively it is, if you have been seduced down the path to page A.

> > Non-free Firmware
> > 
> > which gives you a link to firmware-inclusive versions, daily/weekly
> > builds etc etc.
> > 
> > ¹ Bad design IMO. They ought to take you to
> > http://cdimage.debian.org/debian-cd/current/<architecture>/iso-cd/
> > This page has links which make it obvious what they're pointing to—
> > huge files!
> The netinst ISO is hardly huge.

A reasonable test is "Can I email it? No? Then it's huge". And there's
no warning by the link of its size.

A lot of people who need firmware are likely to download the other
one first, so you can double its size on that score.