Re: Installing Debian
> Well first of all IMHO most of the defaults make sense.
> The problem here is you trade off power for ease of use. And I
Exactly - the more you "simplify", the more choice you lose.
> have yet to see a really good way around this. Maybe the best
> way would be to make "levels" of install like RH has. Novice-Deity
Definitely - give newbies an installer with some bells and whistles,
that does some automated choosing, but keeps the ability to go to a
higher-level if necessary - as well as get the documentation to
understand the advanced settings.
> or something like that but I can see how that would be hard to
> maintain. In short I think the best thing to do is to continue to
> work on FAQs etc. To help people with coming up with something
I think the most important thing is to have comprehensive, relevant
docs in the installer itself, as well as available afterwards. Having
an easily-accessible, comprehensive help system is nearly as good for
a newbie installer as a "smart" installer that makes all the decisions
The key there is "easily accessible" -- remember one of the key things
is to teach the newbie user HOW to RTFM, and WHY they should. If
good, relevant documentation is available at the newbie's fingertips,
there's no excuse for them not to use it. Then, it's just a matter of
GETTING them to use it.
> that will work. Maybe something along the lines of a list of nice
> reasonable options, what they mean and other places to look for
> them. Really now that you can do the simple option on a install
> the rest of it is just knowing what to do. I think I just found
> a project thanks.
Advanced - "I already know what to do, and how to do it, just let me
at the configs."
(allows you to directly edit a config file)
Intermediate - "I know the configs, just show me where to put them."
(menu-based forms for various config options - explain which settings
are going into which configuration files, etc...)
Novice - "I'm entirely confusled by this - give me some help!"
(attempt to autodetect where possible - where impossible, do some
handholding - and always explain exactly WHAT is going on, and WHY)
At any of these categories, you should be able to switch to any other,
as well as access any relevant manpages/howtos.
At least that's how I envision an installer "done right". =)
OK - I've ranted long enough. Back to work...