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Re: cdebconf-gtk-udeb: G-I no longer working with serial mice

On Thursday 13 August 2009, Uwe Bugla wrote:
> a. as default installation I always use expert install
> b. the NTP question I always answer with "Yes". The installer tells me
> that my local time zone is "Europe / Berlin"
> c. The UTC question I always answer with no, without having some crap
> like Windoze installed on my HD. The question of what makes sense and
> what does not I do leave open.....

Using local time for your hardware clock when you're only running Linux 
really makes no sense at all.

The most obvious example is a notebook that you travel around with. If the 
hardware clock is set to UTC you can take the notebook anywhere around 
the world and always have the correct local time simply by changing the 
time zone.

But even for systems that don't travel local time does not make any sense. 
Why would you want to change the hardware clock when summer time 
starts/ends? It does not improve the way the system is used in any way.

> d. After the installation is finished the clock setting of my BIOS was
> trimmed by 2 hours which I wanted to avoid.

I agree that what you describe looks like a bug.

I suspect that the cause is the following:
- the installer itself has no knowledge of timezones, it just runs in
  "current" time, taken either from the hardware clock or rdate
- rdate always updates the system time to UTC
- we update the hardware clock from the /target chroot *after* configuring
  the chroot to reflect that the hardware clock is supposed to be in local
  time, but the time that gets written is the system's current time, which
  is UTC.

So basically finish-install.d/10clock-setup is wrong and should run 
hwclock --systohc --utc _before_ changing the local/utc setting in
But that should be done *only* if rdate was run successfully. In fact, I 
don't think there is any reason to write the hardware clock at all if the 
system time was not updated by rdate.

Uwe: please file a bug report against clock-setup with the details of the 
problem, including the description of the choices you make during 
installation and my analysis.

> Serial mouse issue:
> If there are some special parameters necessary for booting the system
> using serial mice those special parameters should be visible as
> cheatcodes, as not too many people read specific manuals before using
> the latest Debian Sid installer........

OTOH, almost *nobody* uses serial mice anymore and cheatcodes only make 
sense if they are needed by a fair number of users (or else you'd drown 
in cheatcodes, which makes them ineffective). If you have very uncommon 
hardware that you can expect to need specific configuration (which IMO is 
the case for serial mice), it's not that strange that you may need to 
read official documentation.


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