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Reiser4-enabled Debian Unstable (Sid) netboot iso

Niltze, all-

I have been building iterations of Debian-Installer (d-i) enhanced
with Reiser4 4.0.1 kernel, disk and filesystem utilities. Thus far I
have used a local build on Debian Sid of VirtualBox 5.0.10 environment
to test multiple Reiser4 installations.

For flexibility, especially if you are testing in a VM, the following
d-i options may help:

-Network-console: continue installation remotely using SSH
-Openssh-client-udeb: secure shell client for the Debian installer


d-i offers three(3) choices:

Jessie (stable)
Stretch (testing)
Sid (unstable)

I have verified that *all* can be installed from my custom Reiser4
d-i; Nevertheless Jessie (stable) needs access to testing and/or
unstable repositories added at /etc/apt/sources.list in order to
fulfill dependencies of the unstable kernel in my d-i. Jessie (stable)
also needs to have newer Reiser4 4.0.1 packages because d-i downloads
the older (stable) version. I have covered *all* of Jessie conditions
by building newer unstable versions of its requirements. The downside
of it is that a user needs to manually intervene at the shell,
possibly at the expert level.

As for Stretch and Sid, manual intervention is required only to modify
/etc/initramfs-tools/modules file by adding at the end:


*before* installing the custom Reiser4 kernel, thus:
dpkg -i linux-image-4.3.0-1-amd64_4.3.3-5_amd64.deb

so that initramfs can be appropriately updated *before* rebooting the
new Reiser4 installation.

Note that GRUBX does not support booting from /boot Reiser4
filesystem; accordingly, a small partition must be provisioned for
booting into a Reiser4 -formatted root (/) partition. The d-i
partman-reiser4 will format Reiser4 partitions thus:

mkfs.reiser4 -yo "create=reg40" <your selected partition>

Additionally, user may want to provision a /tmp in a non-Reiser4
partition if the intention is to run MariaDB (MySQL) because -- at the
very least -- the DB will complain about /tmp issues if it is
formatted in Reiser4 --personal experience ;-)

With the above said and warning that this is an alpha effort *without*
any explicit and/or implied guarantee that will be risk-free, here is
the current yield of of Reiser4 effort:

Reiser4 -enabled Debian-Installer (d-i) netboot mini.iso renamed as:

Reiser4 -enabled kernel & modules.README_1st:

Reiser4 -enabled Debian GNU Parted packages (install at the end of
installation procedure); please note that those packages under
reiser4-parted_3.2-12/misc are optional):
(after untarring above referenced, install as)
cd reiser4-parted_3.2-12
dpkg -i parted_3.2-12_amd64.deb libparted2_3.2-12_amd64.deb

Next resource is only needed if Jessie was installed. Package below
will replace the older Reiser4 file utilities:

Although I have created patches for most (or all ;-) of the above at
GitHub, I realize Debian Unstable (Sid) is a fast moving development
effort and within a couple of weeks the kernel referenced above will
be outdated and d-i will refuse to install.

With the previous statement said, and if anyone is willing, try the
above Debian-Installer (d-i) resources while the kernel is fresh...

Feedback and/or suggestions welcome.

Best Professional Regards

P.S I am already preparing some images for Google Compute Engine (GCE)
< https://cloud.google.com/compute/ > to add to currently testing
Reiser4 images created last year.
Jose R R
Try at no charge http://b2evolution.net for http://OpenShift.com PaaS
from our GitHub http://Nepohualtzintzin.com repository. Cloud the easy way!

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