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Re: Installer annoyance - a bug?

On Sun, Jun 06, 2021 at 07:48:06AM -0500, Richard Owlett wrote:
> There is *functional/quality/?* difference between an install from a
> physical CD/DVD and from an "equivalent" flash drive.

There's no functional difference: the .iso image is exactly the same.
An install from a physical CD/DVD boots from the boot sector there:
an install from a flash drive to which the image is copied boots from that.

> I have a very atypical use case:
>   1. internet is *not* available to support installation.
>   2. my goal is what I consider a minimalist GUI
> When I first used Squeeze:
>   1. an internet install was impractical as I was on dial-up.
>   2. physical CD/DVDs were readily available
>   3. after booting into a minimal command line system my custom
>      system could easily be installed using apt-get
> Although I now have high speed connectivity, my data cap is low enough to
> strongly discourage ANY installation related internet usage.
> I can easily install a command line system. BUT installing desired GUI
> components via apt-get is impossible because it searches for a
> *non-existent* physical CD/DVD.

This has been covered in detail on debian-user in various posts to/from you
and replies there.

If you use a physical DVD: at one point in the install, it asks if you want
to add another CD/DVD. If you physically eject the DVD at that point and 
put in a second DVD, the installer will read the index files from a second
or subsequent DVD. That's _exactly_ the same as "apt-cdrom add"

If you install from a single DVD image on a flash drive - you can complete 
the minimal command line GUI-less install without using the network.

In order to access the first DVD .iso on a flash drive afterwards, you need to use 
loop mount - that allows you to "read down" to the .iso file system, as 
it were.

If you have several CD/DVD images on one flash drive - you can mount any of them
using loop mount, use apt-cdrom add to add them and install files from them.

If you have a complicated install like GNOME and several other packages, you 
may be prompted to "insert" DVD2, DVD3 - loop mount them to the appropriate 
mount point - probably /media/cdrom -and then install from them.

If you use one of the larger images - the 16G iso image / the BD images - 
those are equivalent to a "large DVD" and can be written to media / a flash
drive. To create those, you (or someone else you trust) will need to use
jigdo files to build them because we don't routinely distribute images of
those sizes. It will act effectively as a large DVD.

Ask whoever provided you with phsyical DVDs to provide the files on a 
USB stick?
> An install using a preseed file is possible but I find it cumbersome.
> Is there some way, during the initial installation, to drop to a terminal to
> specify additional packages to be installed. As preseeding can do
> essentially the same thing the required framework must exist.

All best, as ever,

Andy C.

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