Failing to be of help with boot floppies
Sorry to take so long to reply, but I'm very busy at the moment, and this
business is what prompts me to make the following statements:
I tried to provide specific feedback on an item in the install that, from
my point of view, is simply a broken concept. I made a clear description
of what was happening and why it was unnecessary, and got replies like:
"It doesn't do that any more."
"Find doesn't work on NFS mounts."
Well, the first is simply false and the second is completely irrelevant.
I don't have the time to help if the responses are going to be so idiotic.
I'll try one more time, and then I'm out of here...
During the installation of the base system (what I call the first stage
install) there are two principle steps in the install.
1. Installing the Kernel and Modules
2. Installing the Base System
which exhibit the broken behaviour.
When you select these steps, the first screen presented is the "media
selection" screen. Here I choose "cdrom". For step 2 the next screen asks
me to insert the CD into the drive, which is perfectly adequate. In both
steps, the next screen is titled "Choose Debian Artchive Path" and askes a
useless and confusing question with the default value /instmnt
provided. If you accept the default by pressing enter, you are presented
with yet another useless screen called "Select Debian Archives Path" which
provides 3 options to choose from: the default path, a list of paths, and
manually. Choosing "defaults" starts the actuall installation process
going. Choosing "list" produces yet another screen with all the possible
sources listed, and "manually" adds yet another screen where you get to
put the actual path to your location.
"Choose Debian Archive Path" and "Select Debian Archives Path" are both
redundant, confusing, and unnecessary.
As I said before, if you don't find it in the default location, and a
search of the CD doesn't locate it, then a failure message is appropriate,
but at no time should the user be asked these useless question.
You, the installation designer, have all the intimate knowledge about CD
layout and file locations. The typical new user is not at all familiar
with these things, and asking them for this information is obnoxious to
say the least.
If the boot floppies team is incapable of understanding my reasons for
rejecting this particular design, then I'm afraid that there is no hope
for the installation process, and it will always be a sticking point for
the Debian product. I don't dare express my feelings about anXious and its
inclusion at the last minute without any real functionality that can be
relied upon, given the reaction to my other complaints.
>From where I sit, it doesn't seem that there is any reasonable logic being
applied to this design, and every release a new team comes in to put their
own muddy finger prints on the current flawed design. At this rate we are
loosing ground and I see no hope of fixing anything.
More than a bit frustrated,
_-_-_-_-_- Author of "The Debian Linux User's Guide" _-_-_-_-_-_-
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