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Re: "Official CD" screwups (Was: Why only one non-free section?)

On 15-Sep-1998, Darren Benham <gecko@benham.net> wrote:
> On 15-Sep-98 Joseph Carter wrote:
> > All right, I am REALLY becoming annoyed at seeing this.
> > 
> > Infomagic, Cheapbytes, and LSL have all managed to over the small course of
> > Debian history that I am personally aware of totally SCREW UP the Debian CDs
> > and call them "Official" anyway.  And it's just them that I know about! 
> > This is EXTREMELY frustrating.
> I've used LSL's Bo and Cheapbytes Hamm CDs and had no problems.  When it came
> to dselect and the dist. directories, I just switched to another terminal and
> logged in to look.... 

May I suggest that there be an official file on the CD which simply
gives the location of the relevant Packages files on that CD,
and a description of each one.  This file should live on the root
directory of the CD, and have a standard name. 

Installation tools can parse this file, and present the user with a
list of possibilities.  For example:

    CD Label: Vendor Y Debian GNU/Linux 2.0 Disk 3

    Packages: debian/hamm/contrib/binary-i386/Packages
    Description: Packages from the contrib section of Debian 2.0
    These packages ... blah blah blah.

    Packages: debian/hamm/non-US/binary-i386/Packages
    Description: Packages from the non-US section of Debian 2.0
    These packages ... blah blah blah.

    Packages: extras/binary-i386/Packages
    Description: Vendor YYY packages, including product X.
    Product X .... blah blah blah.

Insert a CD, ask apt to scan it, and it will present a list
of package lists, you select the ones you want to add to your sources,
it will add them, and when you want to install them, it will prompt
you to insert the CDROM labeled "Vendor Y Debian GNU/Linux 2.0 Disk 3".

This allows us to provide "update" CDs, specialized distribution CDs,
add-ons, and have a management system (you can even remove sources at a
later date if you no longer have the CD).

FTP sites and the like can be handled in much the same way.

(This system is kind of similar to the Windows driver installation
system, although hopefully we can avoid the constant "where is your
Win95 CD, where is your driver CD, where is your Win95 CD..." routine).

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.     - Benjamin Franklin

Tyson Dowd   <tyson@tyse.net>   http://tyse.net

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