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points on future installation disks development

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My ideas on boot-floppies' future:

- rewrite dinstall in C - reasons:
  - runtime improvements
    - don't run fdisk -l that often
      - todo: make a libsfdisk from sfdisk
    - more complex datastructures (avoid using sed often)
  - more complex input masks and consistent user interface
    - network configuration: everything in one screen
    - selecting base directory in one screen
    - use :
      - ncurses and libdialog (from FreeBSD), or
      - slang (ncurses shouldn't be needed then, slang is said to have
        a curses emulation), or
      - turbovision (licence OK?), or
      - something else (suggestions welcome)
  - easier i18n (see below)

- new features
  - installation via serial terminal
    - for blind users
    - for automated testing
    - use lilo in order to drive the serial line early (or modify syslinux ?)
      (what about GRUB ?)
  - an extra command-mode installation ?
  - installing base via ftp and smbfs (and from tape ?)
  - mouse support ? (gpm, or derived from gpm)

- i18n plan
  - i18n for C files: use GNUish standard method ? (is this gettext ?)
  - i18n for shell scripts (swapsetup) (is there a good way for doing this) 
    or rewrite them in C
  - i18n for busybox (is it worth the work and disk space ?)
  - try to keep i18n and localization separated
    - how many locale data sets will fit on floppy root.bin ?
    - bigger root.bin for loadlin booting
    - for floppies: make extra locale file that can be copied to Rescue Disk
  - assign versions to original and translated text in order to keep
    them in sync (and automatically find out when they aren't)

- localization
  - translate text files
  - translations for the i18n'ed parts

- minors
  - better 'make bootable': MBR isn't that self-explaining

Related topic: I expect to have much less time for Debian for the
remainder of this year. So I definitely need help here; especially for
the UI part.

Sven Rudolph <sr1@inf.tu-dresden.de> ; WWW : http://www.sax.de/~sr1/

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