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Re: Failing to be of help with boot floppies

Dale Scheetz <dwarf@polaris.net> writes:

> I don't have the time to help if the responses are going to be so idiotic.

I apologize if my remarks were hurried, inadeqeuate, whatever.

There's no need to be insulting, Dale.  I don't think you understand
the quantity of my time it takes to maintain this stuff. 

In fact, I guess it's questionable why I should deal with this at all
if it's not in the form of a bug report.  But I shall continue and try
to suppress my baser urges.

> 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
> and 
> 2. Installing the Base System
> which exhibit the broken behaviour.

I agree these steps suck massively.  The review at dukeofurl mentioned
the same stuff.

I would like to see them improved.  I have no time and no one is
volunteering to fix them, so I am somewhat doubtful they'll ever get
fixed in boot-floppies.

> 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"

Let's hold it right there.

There is supposed to be logic such that this step gets skipped when we
are booting an official cd.

Looking at dbootstrap's util.c and choose_medium.c, it seems that it
will not (should not) ask this question if either the file
'/cdrom_image' or else the 'cdrom' argument was passed.

Furthermore, if it finds the dists dir off the root (we're booting off
cd, remember) then it should automatically use '/', otherwise, it uses
the mount point ('/instmnt')

This is not happening?  Either dbootstrap is buggy in the test (and
needs an Important bug) or else the debian-cd is buggy, and needs an
Important bug.

> and askes a useless and confusing question with the default value
> /instmnt provided.

No, it's asking where the debian archive is.  "/instmnt" is the
default because that's the root of where the media is mounted.

We used to not have this but just prepend this string to the answer
from the user but bugs were filed because of that because poeple got
confused.  Probably an improved message is needed here.

> 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.

If you boot with the 'quiet' argument, this step is skipped and we
just run with 'default' (if it can find that).

> "Choose Debian Archive Path" and "Select Debian Archives Path" are both
> redundant, confusing, and unnecessary.

Well, in the official cd rom case, yes.  In the other cases,
confusing, yes, maybe even redundant, but not 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.

Agreed, and the work is already done, but there just seem to be bugs.

See above.

I do not have an official Debian CD to test with, sad to say, so I
cannot assess where the problem lies, nor can I test it.

Please be a responsible Debian well-wisher and file appropriate bugs.

.....Adam Di Carlo....adam@onShore.com.....<URL:http://www.onShore.com/>

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