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Re: debian-installer on arm status

On Mon, Feb 23, 2004 at 05:49:57PM +0000, Wookey wrote:
> +++ Peter Naulls [04-02-23 13:07 +0000]:
> > In message <20040223104910.GA15886@azure.humbug.org.au>
> >           Anthony Towns <aj@azure.humbug.org.au> wrote:
> > 
> > > It's time to get debian-installer ported to arm; all the major porting
> > > work should already have been done getting it to work on other arches,
> > > so what's left should be fairly straightforward.
> > > 
> > > If you can't get this working, arm's status as a supported arch will
> > > have to be reviewed: there's no point releasing a distribution that
> > > can't be installed. (It'd be possible to release arm with a different
> > > installation toolset than d-i, but I can't imagine that'd be any easier
> > > or much more useful than getting d-i ported)
> You're right of course, and as you observe it really is getting to 'make it
> work or have arse kicked' time. Part of the problem is of course that arm
> installation has always been somewhat 'distributed'  - there is a special
> version of bootfloppies for most 'supported' machines because the default
> one doesn't actaully work, and an awful lot of people using debian-derived
> stuff don't use either b-f or d-i to get things installed - they use some
> random bootloader for the board in question.
> So in fact debian-arm remains useful to a lot of people even without a
> working debian-installer.
> That's not really an adequate excuse for not making it work on at least the
> suitable machines, and hopefully it will be better suited to weird hardware
> than b-f was. We'll see.
> > However, before I resubscribe to debian-boot, and part of the reason
> > I've avoided this issue somewhat, is that I'm far from familiar with D-I
> > (although know b-f quite well).  Can someone list the various issues
> > that need to be resolved, and point out if anyone is working on
> > anything for ARM d-i currently?  Vince?
> ditto. 
> I've got as far as downloading d-i from CVS a few times, but now it's moved
> so I need to change my config to get the new version. I haven't managed to
> spend any useful time actually working on it yet, but am uncomfortably aware
> that _someone_ needs to.
> Poor old vince has found he can't do the kernel _and_ D-I - there aren't
> enough hours in the day.

While true to some extent I did get D-I to the point where I had
working tftp images for winder, bast, riscstation. I tried to talk to
#debian-boot about autobuilders and kernel-image builders and (as
usual) got blown off, this was several months ago and my tree is now
very very out of date so needs to be done again...

One point, I was going to use the kernel udeb image thingy but in its
current form adding all the ARM sub arches would make it generate an
additional 40odd packages from the one source...this seemed grossly
excessive and I wanted to find a more elegant solution.

One issue which was being cleared up but hadn't been resolved was that
the final image stuff wanted to put a single vmlinuz file down for all
sub arches...with several subarches to choose from we ended up without
a sensible kernel for the bootloader to start except for one target :-/

> I'm mostly doing Emdebian things at the moment, and have some stuff pending
> on that from FOSDEM, but I'll try and at least have a look at what's what
> this week.

I checked some stuff in but not nearly enough.

Regards Vincent

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