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Bug#494466: [patch, RFC] Allow to select driver inclusion policy for initramfs-tools

Package: base-installer
Version: 1.93
Severity: wishlist
Tags: patch

With the default initrd now being over 6 GB on amd64 and the fact that 
lilo has structural problems with large initrds, I think that 
implementing something like the attached patch for Lenny is almost 

It is also needed for e.g. arm where in some cases the initrd is getting 
too big for the flash memory it needs to fit in.

My personal guess is that selecting MODULES=dep for x86 is unlikely to 
result in unbootable systems. As I've no idea about other architectures 
the default can be set per architecture (to be determined by their 

Note that the patch adds a new dialog (at medium priority).
Note that this will also need to be documented in the installation guide.

Index: debian/bootstrap-base.templates
--- debian/bootstrap-base.templates	(revision 54931)
+++ debian/bootstrap-base.templates	(working copy)
@@ -62,6 +62,23 @@
  The package ${GENERATOR} that was selected to generate the
  initrd is not supported.
+Template: base-installer/initramfs-tools/driver-policy
+Type: select
+Choices-C: most, dep
+# :sl3:
+__Choices: generic: include all available drivers, targeted: only include drivers needed for this system
+# :sl3:
+_Description: Drivers to include in the initrd:
+ The primairy function of an initrd is to allow the kernel to mount the
+ root file system. It therefore needs to contain all drivers and supporting
+ programs required to do that.
+ .
+ A generic initrd is much larger than a targeted one and may even be so
+ large that some bootloaders are unable to load it but has the advantage that
+ it can be used to boot the target system on almost any hardware. With the
+ smaller targeted initrd there is a very small chance that not all needed
+ drivers are included.
 Template: base-installer/kernel/failed-install
 Type: error
 _Description: Unable to install the selected kernel
Index: debian/templates-arch
--- debian/templates-arch	(revision 54931)
+++ debian/templates-arch	(working copy)
@@ -18,6 +18,14 @@
 Description: for internal use; can be preseeded
  Package to use to generate initramfs
+Template: base-installer/kernel/linux/initramfs-tools/driver-policy
+Type: string
+Default: most
+Default[amd64]: dep
+Default[i386]: dep
+Description: for internal use
+ Default driver inclusion policy for initramfs-tools
 Template: base-installer/kernel/linux/extra-packages
 Type: string
Index: library.sh
--- library.sh	(revision 54931)
+++ library.sh	(working copy)
@@ -512,7 +512,7 @@
 		# initramfs-tools needs busybox pre-installed (and only
 		# recommends it)
-		if [ "$rd_generator" = "initramfs-tools" ]; then
+		if [ "$rd_generator" = initramfs-tools ]; then
 			if ! log-output -t base-installer apt-install busybox; then
 				db_subst base-installer/kernel/failed-package-install PACKAGE busybox
 				exit_error base-installer/kernel/failed-package-install
@@ -549,6 +549,29 @@
+		# Select and set driver inclusion policy for initramfs-tools
+		if [ "$rd_generator" = initramfs-tools ]; then
+			if db_get base-installer/initramfs-tools/driver-policy && \
+			   [ "$RET" = "" ]; then
+				# Get default for architecture
+				db_get base-installer/kernel/linux/initramfs-tools/driver-policy
+				db_set base-installer/initramfs-tools/driver-policy "$RET"
+			fi
+			db_input medium base-installer/initramfs-tools/driver-policy || true
+			if ! db_go; then
+				db_progress stop
+				exit 10
+			fi
+			db_get base-installer/initramfs-tools/driver-policy
+			cat > /target/etc/initramfs-tools/conf.d/driver-policy <<EOF
+# Driver inclusion policy selected during installation
+# Note: this setting overrides the value set in the file
+# /etc/initramfs-tools/initramfs.conf
+		fi
 		info "Not installing an initrd generator."

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