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boot-floppies dselect acquisition methods

On Fri, 22 Jan 1999 09:19:35 +0000, Enrique Zanardi <ezanardi@ull.es> said:
> On Thu, Jan 21, 1999 at 05:56:43PM -0700, Jason Gunthorpe wrote:
>> That was what we are talking about, they simply would not be on the
>> boot floppies but would be packaged seperately to advoid
>> confusion. Ie we have 2 cdrom methods, 2 nfs methods, 4 'disk'
>> methods, 3 ftp and 2 http !

> The base system currently includes dpkg, dpkg-mountable,
> dpkg-multicd and apt.
> dpkg provides cdrom, nfs, harddisk, mounted and floppy
> dpkg-mountable provides mountable dpkg-multicd provides multi_cd,
> multi_nfs and multi_mount

Then where do ftp, http, and ??? come from?

> I guess dpkg-mountable may be removed from the base system.

Based on current reality (i.e., I *hope* that redundant, useless
methods are removed, to lower user hesitation, confusion, and wrong
choices), and based on text from Steve McIntyre (thank you!!) I have
included below the current text about the acquisition methods from the
dselect-beginner document in the boot floppies.

Please review this text and give me hints.  More information is needed!

.....Adam Di Carlo....adam@onShore.com.....<URL:http://www.onShore.com/>

2.1. ``Access'' 

     Here's the access screen: 
dselect - list of access methods
  Abbrev.        Description
  cdrom          Install from a CD-ROM.
* multi_cd       Install from a CD-ROM set.
  nfs            Install from an NFS server (not yet mounted).
  multi_nfs      Install from an NFS server (using the CD-ROM set) (not yet mounted).
  harddisk       Install from a hard disk partition (not yet mounted).
  mounted        Install from a filesystem which is already mounted.
  multi_mount    Install from a mounted partition with changing contents.
  mountable      Install from a partition named in fstab
  floppy         Install from a pile of floppy disks.
  ftp            Install using ftp.
  http           Install using http:, ftp:, and file: URLs.
  apt            APT Acquisition [file,http,ftp]
     Here we tell `dselect' where our packages are. Please ignore the order
     that these appear in. It is very important that you select the proper
     method for installation. In the following list, we describe the
     different methods. 

          Quite large and powerful, this complex method is the recommended
          way of installing a recent version of Debian from a set of
          multiple binary CDs. Each of these CDs should contain a full set
          of "Packages.cd" files (one for each of the archive sections) in
          addition to the traditional Packages files as used by the other
          methods. When you first select this method, be sure the CD-ROM
          you will be using is not mounted. Place any of the set in the
          drive and answer the questions you are asked: 

             * CD-ROM drive location

             * Confirmation that you are using a multi-cd set

             * The location of the Debian distribution on the disk(s)

             * [ Possibly ] the location(s) of the Packages file(s)

          Once you have updated the available list and selected the
          packages to be installed, the multi-cd method diverges from
          normal procedure. You will need to run an "install" step for each
          of the CDs you have in turn. Unfortunately due to the limitations
          of dselect it will not be able to prompt you for a new disk at
          each stage; the way to work for each disk is 

             * Insert the CD in your CD-ROM drive.

             * From the main dselect menu, select "Install".

             * Wait until dpkg finishes installing from this CD (it may
               report installation successful, or possibly installation
               errors. Don't worry about these until later).

             * Hit [Return] to go back to the main dselect menu.

             * Repeat with the next CD in the set...

          It may be neccesary to run the installation step more than once
          to cover the order of package installation - some packages
          installed early may need to have later packages installed before
          they will configure properly.

          Running a "Configure" step is recommended, to help fix any
          packages that may end up in this state.

     multi_nfs, multi_mount
          These are very similar to the multi-cd method above, and are
          refinements on the theme of coping with changing media, for
          example if installing off a multi-cd set exported via nfs from
          another machine's CD-ROM drive.

          One of the best options for installation from a local mirror of
          the Debian archive, or from the network. This method uses the
          ``apt'' system to do complete dependancy analysis and ordering,
          so it's most likely to to install packages in the optimal order.

          Configuration of this method is straight-forward; you may select
          any number of different locations, mixing and matching `file:'
          URLs (local disks or NFS mounted disks), `http:' URLs, or `ftp:'
          URLs. Note however that the HTTP and FTP options do not support
          local authenticating proxies.

          If you have proxy server for either http or ftp (or both), make
          sure you set the `http_proxy' or `ftp_proxy' environment
          variables, respectively. Set them from your shell before starting
          dselect, i.e.: 
               # export http_proxy=http://gateway:3128/
               # dselect

          You will be asked to supply the address of an ftp site, whether
          you want to use passive mode (for proxied ftp), a
          username/password combination, the path to the debian directory,
          the list of distributions you are interested in and a place to
          download the binary package files to (relative to

          The setup script will then immediately attempt to connect to the
          remote server to grab the Packages file(s) etc., then dselect
          will reconnect later when you actually start installing packages.

          If you need to work through a firewall this method should work
          well, and is ideal for people without much local disk space.

          Similar to ftp, but will use a mixture of `http:', `ftp:' and
          `file:' URLs to find the Debian files. You can set it up to use
          different proxies for `http:' and `ftp:' URLs if necessary. Very
          useful if a local proxy will cache the package files for multiple
          users, or if a mirror only allows http access and not ftp.

          This is a simple installation method, with simple requirements:
          give it the address of the NFS server, the location of the Debian
          distribution on the server and (maybe) the Packages file(s). Then
          dselect will install the various sections in turn from the
          server. Slow but easy; does not use proper ordering, so it will
          take many runs of the ``Configure'' step. Obviously only
          appropriate for NFS based installation.

          Caters for those people without CD-ROM or network access. Not
          recommended as a viable installation option any more if you are
          using traditionally-sized floppies, but may work better for
          LS/120 or Zip drives. Specify the location of your floppy drive,
          then feed floppies. The first one should contain the Packages
          file. This method is slow and may be unreliable due to media

          Supply the block device of the hard drive partition to use, and
          as usual the locations of the Debian files on that partition.
          Slow and easy. Does not use proper ordering, so it will take many
          runs of the ``Configure'' step. Not recommended, since the
          ``apt'' method supports this functionality, with proper ordering.

          Simply specify the location(s) of the Debian files in your
          filesystem. Possibly the easiest method, but slow. Does not use
          proper ordering, so it will take many runs of the ``Configure''
          step. _FIXME: How is this different from harddisk?_

          A more complex method than the above, and a good deal faster - it
          will scan only the packages needed. It gives more control over
          the installation options than some of the other methods, but
          requires more setup.

          Designed for single-CD installations, this simple method will ask
          for the location of your CD-ROM drive, the location of the Debian
          distribution on that disk and then (if necessary) the location(s)
          of the Packages file(s) on the disk. Simple but quite slow. Does
          not use proper ordering, so it will take many runs of the
          ``Configure'' step. Not recommended, because it assumes the
          distribution is on a single CD-ROM, which is no longer the case.
          Use the ``multi_cd'' method instead.

     If you run into any problems -- maybe Linux can not see your CD-ROM,
     your NFS mount is not working or you have forgotten which partition
     the packages are on -- you have a couple of options: 

        * Start another shell. Fix the problem and then return to the main

        * Quit `dselect' and run it again later. You might even need to
          shut down the computer to solve some problem. This is quite ok
          but when you come back to `dselect' run it as root. It will not
          be run automatically after the first time.

     After you choose the access method `dselect' will get you to indicate
     the precise location of the packages. If you do not get this right the
     first time hit _Control-C_ and return to the ``Access'' item.

     Once you are through here you will be returned to the main screen.

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