[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Any news about Blends in tasks selection (Was: Debian Installer Jessie Beta 2 release)


On Wed, Oct 15, 2014 at 09:31:36AM +0200, Andreas Tille wrote:
> You belong to a majority if I might conclude from my experience.  I have
> no idea whether I should feel responsible for this but I'm fighting on
> several fronts like the extensive documentation[1] and countless
> talks[2] as well as trying to push newcomers into the topic by
> sponsering their packages[3].

Yes, I noticed.  Thanks for all that work!

> For the moment the way to install Blends is to use the plain Debian
> installer and afterwards install a bunch of metapackages.

Ah, and that's what you want to change now.  That sounds like a very
good idea.

> The lack of a missing installer for all other Blends is a frequently
> criticised problem and I personally think this should be fixed by the
> integration into the official boot cds since this fits to the nature
> of Blends which are a subset of Debian.

Yes, I agree.  For the documentation, I think the main thing that is
missing is "how to start and stop"; important for every documentation.
"Stopping" isn't really relevant in this case (but it doesn't hurt to
mention that the metapackage can be uninstalled).  But "To use a Blend,
you need to install its metapackage" would have clarified it for me.
Once it is possible, it would be very nice if "there is an option to do
this during system install" could be added to that.

>   - Blends are a way to advertise Debian in specific fields of interest
>     I personally started from a point where I wanted to reach a status,
>     that if somebody wonders what distribution to use for biology and
>     medical care the natural answer should be "Use Debian"  We could
>     easily reach this goal for other fields of interest if all our
>     dedicated experts we had in Debian would work on this direction in
>     their own field.

On occasion, I've needed a single-use system; something that boots up
into an application and that shuts down when that application exits.
(Having the full power of Debian in the background is a nice feature,
but mostly unused.)  For example, for dancing rehearsal I want the
instructors to be able to switch their computer on and have the sound
program start up without any interaction.  It isn't hard to set this up,
but if I want to tell other dancing instructors how to do this, it
requires more steps than I would like.  I've tried making custom live
CDs, with a special package that does these things.

Would this use case also be a reason for creating a personal blend?  Or
even an official one?  What would be the easiest way for people to
install a non-official blend?  Should I create my own installer?  Should
the installer be changed to allow entering a URL (for an external apt
source) before it presents the list of available blends?  (I think this
might be a good idea, but it shouldn't be in there by default; only when
the user selects "back" on the blend selection menu.  Or perhaps there
can be a button in that menu for opening the dialog, but if it's for
adding any apt repository, the blends dialog is not the right place for

> There might be additional apt sources but it is not only about apt
> sources.  For instance (as far as I'm informed) all packages in Debian
> Edu are inside Debian and there was just a need to change some
> configuration change of some *other* packages which conflicts with
> Debian policy (I'm pretty sure Jonas will respond in detail to this mail
> - so I save my time here B-)).

So it installs a package which changes configuration of other packages
when it is installed?  That sounds very ugly...  Isn't there a better
way to preconfigure a system?

> I hope I added some more points to this summary.

Yes, thank you.

> > Examples of the target audience would be useful.
> Hmmmm.  I had thought / hoped that this is documented in[5].

It is, but I think it's too much text and too far away.  It's good that
it's there, but I think it would be good to have on the first page
people are pointed to (which one is that anyway?  The one in the wiki?)
a one-line explanation that is understandable.  The definition of "Pure
Blend" on https://wiki.debian.org/DebianPureBlends is "a subset of
Debian that is configured to support a particular target group
out-of-the-box."  That does not give me enough information to know if I
should be interested enough to read any further.

Oh, and I have another question; this seems very similar to "tasks"; how
is it different?

> Enhancements / patches(source is in package source of blends source
> package) are always welcome.

I might write a patch, but knowing myself I probably don't get around to
actually do that.

> > I admit I didn't spend a lot of
> > time trying to find answers to these questions, but I think it shouldn't
> > require a large time investment.
> Do you think I should add these answers to the Wiki page with the
> relevant links?

Yes, that would be good.  But it should be as short as possible; less
text is better.  However, currently it is not enough text, I think,
which is of course worse.

> Hope this additional explanation helps

Yes, thanks!

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: Digital signature

Reply to: