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Re: Are we losing users to Gentoo?

* "Joel Baker" 

| > (I can think of one trivial example--devfs makes it really easy to tell
| > which disks are available to the partitioning program. Can you describe
| > a simple method to do that, which is guaranteed to work on any kernel?
| > Likewise, can you describe a kernel-independent way of parsing the pci
| > device table and loading relevant drivers?)
| To run with your example... I could care less how it's done on a Linux
| kernel, if the API says "Calling this routine will return a list of device
| names which can be safely handed to the partitioning subsystem". Maybe
| that's devfs on Linux, a Perl script on NetBSD, and green cheese on some
| other system. *As long as the API does not assume anything about the system
| underneath*, it *becomes* the 'simple system to do that on any kernel'.
| That's all I'm asking for - careful API design, that tries very hard to
| *not* make any assumptions about such things, and breaks things down far
| enough that one can safely encapsulate OS-specific ways of doing it such
| that they can be replaced.

Yes, that's a goal, eventually.  We are not there yet.  First, get
things working, then make then work and look nice.  Trying to do two
things at a time will make you fumble and not do any of them well.

| On the other hand, if it *is* supposed to support non-Linux ports, all I'm
| asking for is that people try to be mindful of such assumptions and keep
| them hidden as implementation details, rather than core assumptions.

The core assumption in d-i is debconf and some implementation of
dpkg.  Apart from that it is all modules which can be switched at
will.  Yes, there are linuxisms and i386isms in the code.  Yes, they
will be fixed.

Tollef Fog Heen                                                        ,''`.
UNIX is user friendly, it's just picky about who its friends are      : :' :
                                                                      `. `' 

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