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Re: install -- netboot vs netinst vs businesscard Debian installer CDs

On 20100102_103617, Stephen Powell wrote:
> On 2010-01-01 at 23:45:08 -0500, Rick Thomas wrote:
> > I'm pretty sure it was not the lenny installer.  I installed in  
> > "expert" mode and it offered a menu to let me install stable, testing,  
> > or unstable.  This is something that the lenny installer doesn't do,  
> > if I'm not mistaken.
> I'm going from memory here; but if I recall correctly, which releases it
> lets you install depends on which "Release" files it finds on the Debian
> mirror you point it to, for a netinst or netboot install.  It doesn't
> necessarily mean that the installer you are using will work for the
> release you are trying to install.  For example, I earlier attempted
> to install Squeeze using the Lenny installer (although I didn't know
> at the time that it was the Lenny installer).  I also installed in
> expert mode, and it gave me a choice of which releases I wanted to install.
> I chose Squeeze (testing).  It mostly worked, except when it came time
> to install the boot loader.  Installation of grub failed, and I had to
> install lilo instead.  That's because Lenny uses grub (what Squeeze calls
> grug-legacy) and Squeeze uses grub (what Lenny calls grub2).  The Lenny
> installer tried to use grub1 methods to install grub2 and it did not work.
> It also installed some packages (such as console-tools on the i386
> architecture) which are deprecated, and which the Squeeze installer
> presumably wouldn't have installed.
> > In any case, I got the iso from this URL:
> > 
> >    http://http.us.debian.org/debian/dists/sid/main/installer-powerpc/current/images/powerpc/netboot/
> > 
> > And the particular iso I downloaded was:
> > 
> >    Index of /debian/dists/sid/main/installer-powerpc/current/images/ 
> > powerpc/netboot
> >    [ ]	mini.iso	17-Dec-2009 05:34 	13M
> >    Apache/2.2.9 (Debian) Server at http.us.debian.org Port 80
> I forgot to check Sid.  I saw that the Squeeze installer was a duplicate of
> the Lenny installer, but I forgot to check Sid.  It does appear that this
> installer is newer than the Lenny installer, and might work correctly to
> install Squeeze.
> > 
> > I don't know why the date is 17-Dec-2009, not something more recent.
> > Maybe that's why it worked?  More recent ones are broken?
> > 
> > I'm fairly sure it ran the Sid d-i.  It's behavior was identical to  
> > the behavior
> > of the "businesscard" install CD from this URL:
> >    http://cdimage.debian.org/cdimage/daily-builds/sid_d-i/arch-latest/powerpc/iso-cd/
> > when the businesscard install works (which it doesn't, right now...)
> They've had some build issues in the last several weeks.  See the debian-cd
> mailing list archive for discussions on these build issues.  It seems to
> me that the graphical installer, or lack thereof, was the cause of the
> build issues somehow.  Let's hope that they get this straightened out soon!

My impression is that the *installer* is a computer program that may
or may not be burnt onto a particular install CD. For businesscard,
the install program is not on the CD, only the code to effect
downloads from a repository and a specification of where to find the
*installer* program on the repository. If this is the case (a big IF,
since I'm no expert), the behavior of businesscard installs *from the
same CD* can vary over time as bug fixes and stylistic issues are
changed/updated in the "installer" code in the repository.

Again, if this is correct, it may not be useful to study what happened
too closely. Whatever happened may not be reproducible. Still, it's
interesting to try to minimize the magicical thinking about installs.

Paul E Condon           

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