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Re: PROPOSAL: automatic installation and configuration

From: Massimo Dal Zotto <dz@cs.unitn.it>
> From the user perspective the proposed solution is not different from the
> current installation method. The only difference is that it would use a
> dialog interface by default, if available, but this can be easily disabled
> by the user, making the question appearance identical to the current one.

That's one reason I like the general direction - it isn't worse than
the current situation, and has a chance to help improve the process
later on.

> I agree with you that many pop-ups could be annoying to the user but this is
> a limitation of the various dialog programs. We need an user interface which
> could display forms with many fields but at the moment I haven't found one

I don't have a personal experience with actually writing this, but
even the kernel's config scripts seem to be a possible start.  Don't
you think?  From looking at the config language
(/usr/src/linux/arch/i386/config.in) it looks like it is scriptable,
but all the conditions and actions there seem to be easely expressable
in some static form.

> and can't ever write it. Consider also that often a question is conditioned
> by a previous answer, so it must be serialized.

I though about this too.  That's why I directed my questions to the
chap who did the "survey" of the current situation - if the relations
between conditional questions can be expressed in a form of a data
(then we can avoid the need to express the conditions in a script
form.  Avoiding this will allow several tools to be applied to the
same conditions and react differently to them (command-line
vs. full-screen text vs. X11-GUI, for instance)

> We could group questions inside a begin-end block that, when a form-capable
> dialog will be available, would present all the questions in one single
> form, but this is beyond the scope of my proposal. If we decide that this
> is important we could provide dummy begin/end commands which will be
> implemented later.

Right.  At least it won't hurt the current tools and may help in
automatic transition when better tools are available.



--Amos Shapira                  | "Of course Australia was marked for
                                |  glory, for its people had been chosen
amos@gezernet.co.il             |  by the finest judges in England."
                                |                         -- Anonymous

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