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Debian Installer Buster Alpha 1 release

The Debian Installer team[1] is pleased to announce the first alpha
release of the installer for Debian 10 "Buster".

Important notes for this release of the installer

 * On the graphical installer side, a workaround has been applied to
   retain the historical rendering, since the default rendering
   changed heavily in recent fontconfig and freetype releases. It
   isn't bit for bit identical to what we had in Stretch, but it looks
   very close. Later, we'll need to figure out how to compare both
   renderings (improvements, regressions, different issues, etc.) for
   as many languages as possible. This is going to be tracked in
 * Since mips64el has been suffering from toolchain issues for several
   weeks (#871514), it was decided not to publish any images for this

Improvements in this release

 * debian-installer:
    - Build against buster.
    - Stop build-depending on *-pic libraries, due to the switch to
    - Bump Linux kernel ABI from 4.9.0-3 to 4.12.0-1.
 * network-console:
    - Create an sshd user to cope with privilege separation, which
      became mandatory in recent OpenSSH releases.
 * os-prober:
    - Fix EFI check for ID_PART_ENTRY_SCHEME: look for "dos" instead
      of "msdos" (#817023).
 * partman-auto-lvm:
    - Fix check by using -e instead of stat (#759553).
 * partman-auto-raid:
    - Allow using a logical volume as /boot when
      partman-auto-lvm/no_boot=true (See: #610377).
 * partman-base:
    - For systems that are known to have their boot firmware on an
      mmcblk device, protect the firmware area on all mmcblk devices
      (and not only on mmcblk0) from being clobbered during guided
      partitioning (#854822).
 * partman-partitioning:
    - Make get_real_device() both simpler and more generic by
      mimicking the linux kernel's disk_name function (See: #820818).
 * rescue:
    - Invoke search-path by absolute path in chroot_has (#867564).
 * rootskel:
    - Create /run on non-linux too, for screen support.
 * rootskel-gtk:
    - Increase font size of mr_IN locale (#863952).
 * systemd:
    - Fix missing 60-input-id.rules in udev-udeb, which breaks the
      graphical version of the Debian Installer, as no key presses or
      mouse events get processed (#872598).
 * user-setup:
    - Cope with a different disabled root password ("!*") in
      /etc/shadow as well as the normal unset one ("*"), fixing a
      major bug in the live installer (#866206).
 * win32-loader:
    - Replace all mirror URLs with deb.debian.org

Hardware support changes

 * debian-installer:
    - Drop orion5x-qnap images.
 * flash-kernel:
    - Add a machine db entry for the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B (#869488).
    - Add a machine db entry for the Firefly-RK3399.
    - Add a machine db entry for the Radxa Rock 2 Square (#868166).
    - Add machine db entries for various sunxi-based systems that are
      (at least partially) supported in kernel 4.12 and u-boot
      v2017.07-rc3: Banana Pi BPI-M2-Plus, FriendlyArm NanoPi M1,
      FriendlyARM NanoPi NEO Air, Lichee Pi Zero, NextThing
      C.H.I.P. Pro, Xunlong Orange Pi Zero.
    - Add a machine db entry for the BeagleBone Green (#866822).
 * grub-installer:
    - Really add support for JBOD systems with a large number of discs
 * libdebian-installer:
    - mips: Add support for checking the "isa" field, and use it as
      fallback for unknown CPUs (#865425).
    - mips: Drop unsupported subarchitectures.
 * linux:
    - [armhf] udeb: Replace imx-ipuv3-crtc with imxdrm in fb-modules.
    - [armhf] udeb: Add sunxi_wdt to kernel-image (#866130).
    - udeb: Add dm-raid to md-modules (#868251).
    - [arm64,armhf] udeb: Ship usb3503 module in usb-modules, needed
      for e.g. Arndale development boards (#865645).

Localization status

 * 75 languages are supported in this release.
 * Full translation for 25 of them.

Known bugs in this release

 * The installer will be using the Stretch theme for a while.

See the errata[2] for details and a full list of known issues.

Feedback for this release

We need your help to find bugs and further improve the installer,
so please try it. Installer CDs, other media and everything else you
will need are available at our web site[3].


The Debian Installer team thanks everybody who has contributed to this

 1. https://wiki.debian.org/DebianInstaller/Team
 2. https://www.debian.org/devel/debian-installer/errata
 3. https://www.debian.org/devel/debian-installer

Cyril Brulebois
on behalf of the Debian Installer Team

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