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Re: Suggestions from debian-user

Forgot to cross-post (this might be interesting here too). If you reply
you might consider CC'ing debian-www

On Tue, 11 Apr 2006 00:24:52 +0200
Richard Atterer <richard@2006.atterer.net> wrote:

> Hi Andrei,
> I'm the one who wrote much of the stuff under /CD/, so it's all my fault... 
> ;) Thanks for the remarks. I've read through the thread at 

As said in the subject, these are merely suggestions. But thank you
anyway for taking the time to read and answer.

> The page that is supposed to tell people about this is 
> <http://www.debian.org/CD/> - the first bullet about netinst CDs tries to 
> tell people that they do not need the full CDs. IMHO it is pretty clear - 
> any ideas on how to improve it?

It's pretty obvious to me and others who actually read the text!
I don't know... maybe surfers are so much used to flashy stuff jumping
into their eyes that they cannot read a simple text :)

> In <http://lists.debian.org/debian-user/2006/03/msg01524.html>, Chris Lale 
> makes a similar point:
> > You certainly have to plough your way through the Debian website to 
> > understand what you need to do. A prominent "How to get started with 
> > Debian" page might work. Just short and sweet, but explaining all the 
> > different ways of getting a system set up - buying CDs, downloading 
> > (jigdo), burning isos, net install, etc.
> ...but that page exists, it is /CD/  :-|

True, but ... the section 'Getting started' from www.d.o has no
link to /CD/ but instead links to /ditrib/ where the first option is
'Buy a set of CDs' (the full set i guess)

> TBH, sometimes my impression is that users first download *everything* they 
> can get their hands on and only then start to actually read the website.

Many people just don't care about bandwidth. Only one year
surfing/downloading on a 5kB/s (if your lucky) dial-up connection can
cure that ;)

> Andrei Popescu wrote:
> > I can imagine this might have scared off many potential new users. Some
> > info like: "For a typical Desktop install you need CD1 and 2" would be
> > the least to provide.
> True - at the moment, it is only explained in an entry of the CD FAQ. Hmm, 
> what do you think, maybe I should provide a link to the FAQ entry on each 
> of the pages /CD/jigdo-cd/, /CD/torrent-cd/ and /CD/http-ftp/ ?

That might help
> In <http://lists.debian.org/debian-user/2006/03/msg01556.html>, Andrei 
> Popescu wrote:
> > A quick peak at debian-cd shows that there are discussions about having a 
> > Desktop install with as few CDs as possible. This is the development 
> > part. The site developers should present this accordingly. Something 
> > like: "For a Desktop install you need at least CD1 and 3".
> This is a bit difficult in practice. "Desktop install" means different 
> things to different users ("What - no application XYZ? You suck!"). 
> Furthermore, a notice about this wouldn't be that simple because it would 
> have to distinguish between stable and testing images. Finally, the testing 
> images change too frequently - if the information in such a notice were too 
> exact, it would also become outdated too quickly.
> I think the fairly general "you probably only need the first two CDs" from 
> <http://www.debian.org/CD/faq/#which-cd> is about as definitive as we can 
> get ATM. :-/

What about this:

"For a typical Desktop Install you need ONLY the first two CDs. Even if
you might need more than that, it is very easy to download later only
the packages you need". 

Of course, by typical Desktop Install I mean the Desktop Task.

> In <http://lists.debian.org/debian-user/2006/03/msg01565.html>, Neil Dugan 
> wrote:
> > Another thing that might be handy is to have a web form with the major 
> > packages on it that you can tick off to get a list of iso files needed to 
> > install those packages.
> Something similar to this is available (though admittedly somewhat hidden) 
> via <http://www.debian.org/CD/jigdo-cd/#search>. However, it only works for 
> individual packages, not tasks. It would be tricky, but not impossible, to 
> implement the task-based version you seem to envision.
> From time to time, I toy with the thought of a general download form which 
> also helps you pick the right mirror. This is made difficult/impossible by 
> the incomprehensible restriction of having no scripts on www.d.o. :-\ Also, 
> I do not have the time/energy to implement it, someone else will have to do 
> it.

Of course I am not the inventor of the wheel :)

> In <http://lists.debian.org/debian-user/2006/03/msg01831.html>, Andrei 
> Popescu wrote:
> > Or maybe use jigdo to build your own CD-set according to task and/or 
> > individual package selections?
> That way lies madness IMO! This can go wrong in too many ways, we would 
> have to support a million different CD variants, users' problems with 
> individual images would be difficult to track down, there'd be big 
> confusion of what a "Debian CD" actually is etc... people should just use 
> the netinst CD which contains a nice installer to guide them through the 
> package selection process!  [Besides, jigdo cannot really do what you 
> suggest.]

I know too little about jigdo. And imagination has no limits :)

Just try to "stick it in their face" :) that they only need the first
two CDs and direct them to debian-user for further questions. We have
high traffic anyway, and most subscribers will give a decent answer if
the poster is not rude (or worse)

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough.
(Albert Einstein)

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