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Re: Why are the Squeeze images so much larger?

On 08/02/11 06:58 AM, Daniel Baumann wrote:
> if you need a cd sized image, you can always build one yourself, see the
> live-manual at http://live.debian.net/manual/ for more information.

In particular, check out this example where the topic of size reduction
is explored:


Ideally, if Debian wants to formally support CD-sized live images, we
need cooperation from maintainers of the various desktops to provide us
with 'tasks' that are produces images of that size (both for i386 and
amd64 at least) and still have room for the live installer to be
included on the same image. To be honest, because of the issues Daniel
already mentioned, I don't think that's going to happen.

However, I have discussed with some others on irc before that we would
welcome another example in the manual if someone has a simple, easy to
maintain configuration that produces a usable subset of packages for
CD-sized media for one or more desktops. Without support from the
desktop maintainers, I would not expect the Debian Live project to
produce official CD images from this, but would maintain this in the
manual for example purposes only. Also, being an example, it would not
be guaranteed to always produce images of the desired size, since the
archive does change over time.

Some things to consider:

The example should be instructive, with the intended audience being the
user of live-build who wants to make such an image, *not* end-users of
that image.

I do not think simply disabling recommends is by itself good enough, as
this has far-reaching consequences, removing lots of things that a user
might need with no regard at all for how big they are. It also has high
overhead for the developer trying to work around unwanted omissions by
manually adding them back to the list.

We present the idea of "blacklisting" packages via APT pinning at a
negative pin priority here:


This could be useful for dropping some very large packages from the
media. However, take care when selecting such packages about the
tradeoffs you are making. For example, it is tempting to remove
openoffice wholesale because it is huge, but many users expect an office
suite to be there. That being said, it may be sufficient for demo
purposes to include some subset of openoffice.

And finally, take care about the other tradeoffs we could make that
would give the user a different user experience with the CD-sized media
vs. DVD. For example, --binary-indices false could save some space, but
at the cost of the user having to update the indices before they can
even do an "apt-cache search". And if they're demoing the live image
offline this may be a major inconvenience!

In conclusion, I'm not at this time interested in spearheading such an
optimization effort, but as I said, I would welcome additions into the
Examples section of the manual, provided the example is carefully
thought out.


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