Web lists-archives.com

Re: Debian iso installation incorrectly sets sources.list

On Wed 10 Jan 2018 at 11:34:57 (+0000), Steve McIntyre wrote:
> hosack410@xxxxxxxxx wrote:
> >
> >This is a bug report. I tried to use the reporting system, but it did not
> >seem to be appropriate. So, I will give a narrative:
> >
> >This is what happened.
> >I decided to install Debian on my small machine (Asus eeePC 900A, 1GB
> >ram, 4GB storage).  So I selected debian-9.3.0-i386-xfce-CD-1.iso and
> >put it onto a flash memory stick.  Installation went ok, but
> >later on when I did "apt install gcc", the installation program
> >requested the insertion of the installation disk in the drive
> >/media/cdrom. Why?
> >
> >Examination.
> >The /etc/apt/sources.list file had "deb: cdrom:[<installation>..." as
> >the first entry, and was not commented out. My installation medium
> >was wrong!
> >
> >Solution.
> >Comment out "deb: cdrom:[<installation>..." in sources.list.
> >
> >Discussion.
> >There are 2 problems:
> >(1) Installation should not put the installation medium in the
> >sources.list, at least not without asking the user,
> >since the medium may be reused.
> This is a long-standing design decision that probably merits
> re-examination, yes. The current logic assumes:
>  * if you've used a "netinst" to install, then you won't want to use
>    it again later, so it will be used by d-i then commented out later.
>  * if you've used a bigger (set of) image(s), then you most likely
>    will want to use this again in the future. This is to support
>    people using CD/DVD media sets for installations. We should
>    probably drop this for the single-CD xfce media at least.

That sounds sensible …

> >(2) Installation should keep track of the installation medium;
> >if necessary by asking the user.
> >	(2) reflects a wider problem: Debian has a legacy of
> >assuming CD or DVD installation. But much is now done by
> >flash memory sticks. Debian should change to reflect this.
> >For example, the iso file names might be "large" (or "full")
> >or "small" (or "base"), not "DVD" or "CD". References
> >to "CD" or "DVD" should be replaced by  reference to the
> >"installation medium", unless "CD" is actually necessary. Etc.
> Agreed, yes. The way we use USB media in the installer at the moment
> is to make them appear just like CDs. That works, but leads to odd
> messages. We should fix up those messages, at the very least. It's on
> my list...

… but you can almost never win at this game because there'll always
be someone who assumes or wants the opposite.

eg they do a netinst but leave out a package necessary to get
connected to the internet after they reboot;
or they install from a full DVD but then decide their connectivity
is good enough to rely instead entirely on the internet.

Perhaps /etc/apt/sources.list could have a one-line pointer to a text
file that explained the options available and how to achieve them.