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[Freedombox-discuss] don't write code - user-friendly configuration



On Wed Sep 01 18:19, Jonas Smedegaard wrote:
>> On 09/01/2010 01:07 PM, Jonas Smedegaard wrote:
>>> It is a *much* slower process to convince a Debian package maintainer 
>>> to implement reliable packaging configurability for our needs than to 
>>> hack ourselves on top of an installed package, but all hacks we 
>>> invent we must *maintain* too, which is too likely to bit-rot down 
>>> the road.
>>
>> That's a tough one. I think it'll take too way much time and hassle  
>> for our config changes to reach FB users.
>
> Skolelinux instructs its users to reinstall to newer major releases  
> rather than upgrading.  I find that unacceptable for FreedomBox.
>
> I would prefer a very simple FreedomBox - e.g. providing only routing  
> and a single web page with Web-ID and Webfinger - which was upgradeable,  
> over one with e.g. filesharing and a CMS which could not reliably be  
> fully automatically be upgraded to next major Debian release.

Another comment on the "off-the-shelf" subject - it's very common for
'embedded' devices to have upgrades which are "reflash the whole firmware with
the new image". I'm not yet convinced that this is a bad model for FB to take.
Of course, this is nothing like "reinstalling your OS" - it's a point-and-click
solution which retains all of your state. People understand that and won't have
a problem with it.

If we do have rolling upgrades (and we may want them more frequent than Debian
stable releases, I don't know), then they must be completely bulletproof.  No
questions asked by debconf, no "oh, but now you need to do X", no "oops, it
broke in your specific config setup".

This isn't something which is aimed at "normal computer users" - it's an
appliance. It's like your washing machine, or your TV.

That said, it's probably not a goal for the first, second or even third
iteration, but please keep it in mind

Matt
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