[D-I] The impact of a new language on Debian Installer
I have made some tests to check what is the exact impact of a new
language added to Debian Installer.
The procedure was the following:
- identify which packages included in a netboot i386 initrd are
- recompile these packages from a fresh d-i checkout
- in another branch, run l10n-sync after commenting the new language
in packages/po/PROSPECTIVE. This adds all xx.po files to the d-i
- activate this language in languagechooser
- recompile the initrd packages from that branch
- in both checkouts:
- copy the recompiled udebs to "localudebs" in installer/build
- "make build_netboot"
Then I compared the size of the uncompressed initrd images.
The result when activating Vietnamese is:
-rw-rw-r-- 1 bubulle bubulle 8567808 2005-04-29 22:22 initrd-novi-trunk
-rw-rw-r-- 1 bubulle bubulle 8585216 2005-04-29 22:22 initrd-vi
As we see, adding the Vietnamese language has added 174087 bytes to the
So, as a rough estimate, we can probably assume that adding a language
costs us about 18kb in the initrds.
About the memory impact:
I have booted mini.iso images in qemu up to the languagechooser
screen. Then I switched to VT2 and issued the "free" command:
With Vietnamese: 15524kb of memory are used
Without : 15460kb of memory are used
At kbd-config step:
With : 15580
Without : 15520
At ethdetect step (I can't go further as for some reason my mini.iso
fails to load the net driver):
With : 15756
Without : 15716
So, funnily, the difference seems to decrease with the progress of the
various steps...:). Joey probably had a good explanation for that, but
indeed it seems to me that the major impact is on initrd sizes but it
is still quite manageable.