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Replace discover by isenkram in d-i, better integration with virtualizations/clouds

[ Please respect reply-to, let's have this discussion on debian-boot ]

Hello everybody,

debian-installer is using discover[1] to install some packages based on the
hardware it discovers. Unfortunately, discover is dead upstream (Debian is
the upstream really) and the hardware->package database is not maintained
at all.

In the last years, Petter Rheinholdtsen worked on isenkram[2] with a
similar but a bit broader goal. I noticed it has better support
of clouds and that it will install some virtualization/cloud-related
packages automatically whereas discover does not. It also makes it easier
to install the appropriate firmware packages.

I would thus suggest that we consider replacing discover by isenkram-cli.

Last time I discussed this with Petter, he was willing to do the ground
work on the debian-installer side but he did not want to lead this
discussion. I'm thus starting the discussion myself.

I see mainly benefits to such a move. The only downside is that it would
pull python by default. This entirely depends on whether we want to keep
it installed or not. We could install it just to do a single scan and install
pass during installation and then get rid of it (this would then likely
be made configurable with a debconf preseed).


[1] https://tracker.debian.org/pkg/discover
[2] https://tracker.debian.org/pkg/isenkram
Raphaël Hertzog ◈ Debian Developer

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