Re: mass-installing Debian
On 19 May 1999, Dean Carpenter wrote:
> I've been thinking a bit about the need for mass-installations. Having
> done a few of them, it gets to be a tad tedious ...
> Currently, the preinst and postinst scripts ask the user questions, and
> make changes according to the responses. Instead of that, we need a
> general service script that processes a package-specific file containing
> questions and answer-variables. The results of this get appended to
> an installation response file that each package can source to retrieve
> the answers it needs. Hrmm, got that ?
For the admin:
As a start, why couldn't you just 'expect' the first installation, make
expect part of base, and use that session to control the entire thing
(from selecting the correct package retrieval method on).
For the developers:
On a related note, couldn't we have an environment variable set at
installation time, e.g. "NON_INTERACTIVE_DPKG=TRUE", and have the
maintainer scripts check this to see if they should ask questions or not?
If this variable were set to TRUE, I'd like to see packages which require
configuration send mail to root with a message like:
"To finish configuring bind, please run /usr/sbin/bindconfig"
If you don't like the idea of sending mail (maybe mail is not yet setup),
then have the maintainer scripts write their config commands to a single
script, like so:
echo "/usr/sbin/bindconfig" >> ~root/debian_postinstall_config.sh
Then the sysadmin can run this single script to complete the install at
Perhaps some mechanism like those above can tide the user community over
until we have a new tool(set).
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