Live System images and Pure Blends
Hello Debian Project and CD-Team,
I have been started to look into live system generation
(live-build), Be honest, I have never been used a Debian Live CD.
Few days/weeks back I looked into the live CD which are provided
by Debian (live-wrapper).
I also think, it is very important to provide live-systems also
for the next releases.
I have been looked into:
* debian-live-11.4.0-amd64-standard.iso (1,1G / 800 packages)
* debian-live-11.4.0-amd64-xfce.iso (2,5G / 2270 packages)
* debian-live-11.4.0-amd64-gnome.iso (2,7G / 2572 packages)
I'm wondering if we should refine those images. Maybe the Debian
Project and the users can benefit from it.
One of the live images is called "standard". What does standard
means? What can the user do with the "standard" image? I looked
into xfce and gnome. The gnome image also includes few games,
evolution and thunderbird. xfce doesn't have a mailclient at all.
I think one person at the BoF said, it's not necessary to build a
image for every desktop manager. Personally, I agree.
I asked myself:
* Who will use the live system?
* Why will somebody use the live system?
* When should we provide a Debian Pure Blend?
Who will use the live system? Everybody!
Why will somebody use the live system? Everything!
It may helpful we the project defines some images with a scope.
Maybe something like this,..
# Rescue Disk Image
An image for a live system to rescues a broken system. It may
have a set of useful tool, but may not have a X-Server. Powerful
editor, maybe also gnu compilers and manpages and screen / tmux.
This is not just a 'small' Rescue Disk Image this will be a real
powerful Debian system (without X).
Live System to provide the Calamares-Installer. The live system
can be used to install Debian with Calamares.
(I haven't used it - I can not give much feedback, yet)
# Debian Desktop / Office
Debian Desktop / Office Live System could be used to try Debian
on a personal PC at home or as system at office. Also Debian
Junior could be a live system for kids.
We need to provide a set of applications the users may need. E.g.
like a E-Mail client, office suite, browser, Jabber Client,...
The use case is: "Let's try Debian and see what it is". The
result: "It's awesome!" To achieve this result, we need to have a
good set of pre-installed applications.
Now, pure blends come in. I think the goal of the pure blends is
exactly what we need for Desktop / Office / Junior / Med / ...
The 'experts' (blends team) knows which packages are required /
helpful / working.
One idea would be to provide packages like
Those packages will include a well defined structure to build the
live-system images via live-build.
Let's say we are using the pure blends framework to provide
meta-packages for those live-systems. We may define a
Those meta-package will include all important packages for the
pure blend project. If the user will install this package or the
live-system will use this package, we will have a good set of
packages for the project (blend system).
I think it would be also nice to use it for the Debian Installer
see #851555. I'm not sure if a "hierarchical" tasksel is
mandatory for the first step. Divide et impera. I think it would
be nice to have something like below - where we can reuse the
[ ] Debian Desktop - desktop-base-system
[ ] Debian Office - office-base-system
[ ] Debian Junior - junior-base-system
[ ] Debian Med - med-base-system
We may install for those blends quite the same as we would use in
the live CD. The user is able to install more blend packages, if
necessary. We will not confuse the users. If the users tries a
live-system and later will install the pure blend, they will get
the same environment.
On the other side, Debian Project knows every well what has
been offered to the user and knows the live-system and the
debian-installer will use the same packages.
Personally, I think it would be much better to provide "soon" the
possible to access to the pure blends, instead to "wait" a long
time until we are able to find a nice solution for a hierarchical
selection. Sure, if somebody is able to provide a solution, it's
We should also work on a README.html / pdf file as a first
"Welcome" and guide new users where they can get more help. Links
to pre-installed documentation, Debian Wiki pages, Debian Local
I have created a small example of a Debian Desktop live system.
The packages are split in different files:
Those files can be used to define the meta-packages.
Very important is to provide a "Welcome" file on users desktop: