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Re: Can we still support 32MB installs?

Christian Perrier wrote:
> > As to the 14k, we're currently too big for 32 mb memory installs and
> A few days ago, I made a few tests in VmWare to detect which memory
> size we currently support.
> So I added memory to a virtual machine, 4MB by 4MB....starting from
> 32MB.
> The first machine which was working was the 44MB machine.

FWIW, it might be possible to get machines with less than 44 mb of
memory to work trivially by tweaking settings in lowmem, notably in


These numbers have to be determined by experimentation; level1 is where
d-i enters lowmem mode at all, while at level2 it takes some extra
measures to save even more memory at the cost of some usability and min
is the point where it gives up and refuses to run. So increasing level2
to take effect at whatever point level1 stops working might make things
work for 40 or so mb of memory.

(Note that there's a kernel fuzz factor on some of these memory numbers,
so you have to read the rest of the source to figure out what's really
going on.)

> Of course, this is a single test, with the default install (hence 2.6
> kernel) on an i386 machine...so we cannot generalize.

Other thing is that i386 lowmem is currently still tuned to the 2.4
kernel, which after all does tend to use less memory than 2.6. It would
be possible to have different sets of numbers for the two kernels.

> But this test makes me think that I'm unsure whether we can still
> imagine supporting 32MB installs unless very new methods to save RAM
> are implemented.

IIRC Sylvian has gotten 16 or 20 mb installs to work recently with a
hacked version of the installer.

see shy jo

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