IMHO, coLinux will always be a fringe thing for the simple thing that
the kernel of Linux itself is never stable. For this reason alone, we
will always encounter some form of bug in coLinux because something
will always change somewhere that we will miss.
Short of putting coLinux on a CD(s) with a given Linux distro, coLinux
will never be stable, and as such, I don't believe it should be given
that sort of publicity. For all we know, coLinux maybe not work in six
months due to a Linux kernel restructure somewhere, making our stable
only work backwards. How do you explain that to a newbie? Are they
going to get "I'm sorry, your going to have to upgrade coLinux to
support this kernel." or are they going to get a stream of errors
when they try something new?
So I agree with Peter, the product is coLinux and thats what we're
here to provide. If we turn into building newbie friendly stuff, we'll
be spending more time tweaking that so its bug proof than actually
working: thats someone elses job.
Two final items, when you build an automated installer of any variety
two things happen:
1) People become dumber.
2) People lose options.
Elaborating, (1) people become dumber due to the simple fact that they
don't have to learn anything. I've seen friends of mine, barely
computer literate, bragging that they installed Windows XP on their
machine. Windows XP is perhaps one of the most automated OS installs
around with the best hardware driver library available: you don't need
to know anything to get it done, from partitioning to monitor
adjustment, its done automatically. People don't know about
partitioning, file systems or drives (they don't care), so when
something goes wrong, they have less of an idea because they don't
know how they got there to start with. Then support systems need to be
introduced to handle the automated installs where the people probably
know less than what they think. IT support is a tricky business, and
frankly, its not something imo we should be doing.
Secondly, (2) people lose options in what image they might use and
what amount of virtual ram they might use or where it may be put or
perhaps even what kernel they would like to use. A coLinux installer
would be mated to a specific kernel branch, and even then some
companies alter the kernel and apply their own modifications. What if
someone downloads the coLinux installer (that was released six months
ago on an old kernel), and they pick up a KNOPPIX cd (that was
released a month ago) with a new kernel. There is that dire
possibility that the system would malfunction and not work, no matter
how automated you made the install. A computer can't be substituted
for hands on experience, as I've stated in the first point.
So a few thoughts on the matter,
On Sun, 9 Jan 2005 21:14:55 -0000, peter green <plugwash@...> wrote:
> my belief is that colinux itself should remain pure and clean without crud
> to directly support newbies
> the task of maintaining colinux itself and the task of providing systems for
> newbies built around it should be seperate imo just as the task of maintaing
> the normal linux kernel and the task of building distros round it are
> btw i did have cloop working with older versions of coloinux but i never
> manged to build it against a 2.6 colinux kernel (though i have a feeling
> this may be an issue with building knoppers source against vanilla linux
> rather than debian kernel sorce pacakges and could probablly be fixed quite
> quick by someone who properly
> also im sorry but requiring multiple gigabytes to do a normal install of
> something is just insane. those kind of requirements WILL turn people away
> and get you accusations of megabloat hard drives of only 30 gigs or so are
> still verry common especially in laptops (which are the time when running
> linux and windows in paralell on the same host is most usefull)
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: colinux-devel-admin@...
> > [mailto:colinux-devel-admin@... Behalf Of A.Alper
> > Atici
> > Sent: 09 January 2005 13:51
> > To: colinux-devel@...
> > Subject: [coLinux-devel] Re: colinux in the german press (C't magazine)
> > Hi,
> > On Fri, 7 Jan 2005 17:56:57 -0500, Ian Bonnycastle wrote:
> > >I personally think coLinux is ready for any user that is ready to
> > >handle Linux as a standard operating system. Then again, if you're
> > >talking about installing and maintaining the binaries rather than the
> > >OS itself, then thats debatable. There isn't a "standard windows
> > >installer" yet (or is there?) as far as I know, so it requires a
> > >little more advanced skills to maintain the "current level" of
> > >binaries.
> > >
> > I agree coLinux requires too much "attention" after its current
> > installer does its work. Dealing with TCP/IP settings, disk
> > partitions, custom built root disk images, having to install Cygwin to
> > see some X desktop, getting along with config.xml... collectively put
> > up a nice and major barrier for the uninitiated user.
> > Firstly, I think coLinux should be based on a well-built,
> > comprehensive, widely known root disk image. Fortunately, there's one
> > such work called Knoppix, as most of you know. The immediate
> > side-effect of this is integration of cloop module into coLinux
> > kernel, but why waste CPU cycles for on-the-fly decompression on a
> > platform with lots of free disk space? Now that we have cofs in
> > coLinux (ref. recent snapshot), I think it's possible to put up a
> > sophisticated installer that boils down to: "make sure you have 5GB
> > free space, have your Knoppix CD ready and I'll do the rest for you."
> > Behind the scenes, I envision a custom initrd that contains statically
> > linked extract_compressed_fs, ash to drive the linuxrc and probably
> > nash (from Red Hat) to fill in where ash lacks such as losetup.
> > Once linuxrc decompresses KNOPPIX (thanks to cofs) onto disk and them
> > mounts it, one will have almost all the commands in hand. After that,
> > linuxrc can create an empty root disk with dd, format it with
> > mkfs.xxxx, copy decompressed KNOPPIX image, tune/add rc scripts (e.g.
> > add an ifconfig for eth interace, start vncserver, etc), whatever...
> > Note that, this is basically a twofold process where windows part of
> > the installer installs colinux itself first, and then hands over the
> > rest to coLinux with a specific initrd and startup parameters.
> > Windows installer can also configure TAP with WMI scripting and a
> > vncviewer in listen mode, so we get a complete setup.
> > So, what do you guys think? Any taker?
> > --
> > A. Alper Atici OpenPGP KeyID: 0xB824F550
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