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Re: Verification of installation-guide-i386 docs regarding alternative installation method

I took my time, but I did a methodic test of the alternative installation
method. I have encountered similar gotchas as with new Ubuntu Edgy and
I'm glad I have had a previous experience - because the solutions were
pretty much similar.

First off, I'd like to point out my goals and method of validation.

My main goal with manual installation using bootstrap was to install
a basesystem only, with equivalent settings that the debian-installer
does using official installation media. This included:

* preparation of mountpoints (mainly cdrom)
* timezone selection
* choice between UTC and local clock
* ethernet settings (including /etc/hosts)
* setting apt repositories (including security reposiories)
* setting up locales
* setting up console and font
* setting up /etc/kernel-img.conf options for automatic kernel update
* grub boot manager installation and configuration
* enabling shadow passwords

My method was as following. I installed Debian Etch by using official
Beta 3 netinst CD first. I've used "installgui" to get an overview of
typical options and to get to know what to expect.
Next, I've installed Debian Etch by using the same netinst CD, but this
time I've used "expertgui" to have a fine control over the installation
Then I've installed Debian Etch by using debootstrap method, as described
in the Installation Guide. I compared the steps and results with the
outcome of the previous two installations.

Several brief observations. Even though I've installed Sarge several
times (especially during its testing phase), I was very keen to see the
graphical GTK frontend to the debian-installer. The process and the end
result was very similar to the console/framebuffer installer, but anyway
it was still done by the means of X11 and a mouse. A very refreshing
experience, although not revolutionary at this moment.
But the very best part was after installation of "desktop" task.

In a word: EXCELLENT !!!!!!

Given the experience with Sarge, both during the installation and the
ongoing maintenance, this release looks very strong in my opinion.
Solid GNOME 2.14, automatic update notifier, clean GTK theme, very good
default fonts (at last!) - the overall feeling was very impressive.
I'm proud that I can contribute something to this release as well :-)

Now to the results of my efforts.

I decided to separate my general comments concerning the validation of
the alternative installation method (this message) from concrete bug
report against installation-guide package, as asked by Frans Pop [1].
A bug report will be posted immediately after this message.

I hope this would be useful for the Debian project, as I've tried to
describe problems along with my suggestions of how to improve on them.
It's been fun comparing Debian Etch and Ubuntu Edgy, only to conclude
that the new Debian 4.0 compares pretty well against new Ubuntu (yes!).
I appreciate the hard work that the whole Debian developers community
did and I welcome a constructive criticism of my feedback.

With best regards,
Wiktor Wandachowicz

[1] http://lists.debian.org/debian-boot/2006/10/msg00729.html

Registered Linux user #390131 (http://counter.li.org)

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