Hey, come on.
The review is "different" than the rest.
I took some idea for improvement from it (and little from the candy ones, really).
Here are some:
also then copied the file tree from each ISO to my /home/public directory.
I planned to install the systems from there because of my flaky and undependable CD drive on my test box.
He is not a newbie, or ordinary tester. He knew what he was doing.
the Vector developers have eliminated that part in the installation process where
the end-user can install from a manually selected external directory.
Ok, we did eliminate this.
Specifically the script was looking for the SETUP.CONF file within the veclinux directory. I verified the directory existed although as I merely copied the entire file tree from the ISO image I knew the directory existed. After studying the setup script, ....
Damn .. he is a hacker.
How many of us has done this before
Lesson to learn: Some users are genius, don't try to outsmart them.
After surfing the web for clues, I began to wonder whether I could install directly from the ISO image. There is a script included with the distro called vinstall-iso. I’m no shell scripting expert and the best I could garnish from reviewing that script is the program installs the entire ISO image. I got the feeling the script is intended more for reinstalling Vector rather than any initial installation. The documentation for the script is scant and when I read that using the script was a “piece of cake,” I knew right then that the opposite was true. I never did figure out how or when to use that script.
Ck ck ck ... he really-really dig deep.
Lesson to learn: Our documentation need upgrading !!!
I was beginning to get frustrated, but after much trial and error I succeeded. The trick was to install the ISO image to the root directory of any drive or partition. Likewise with the extracted file tree from the ISO. I had extracted the file tree to a subdirectory in my /home/public directory, much like any organized person would do. Similarly, my ISO image was located in a subdirectory called Vector, located on an external hard drive where I store all of my ISO images. Temporarily moving the ISO image to the root of the external hard drive file tree finally satisfied the setup script. This is an example of really crappy programming and nearsightedness.
Well, I was the crappy programmer
To be honest I was thinking like him too, but I ignored it.
I did not implement the feature he talked about because:
- It is a lot of easier to just mount the media, then looking for the ISO / veclinux directory in the root
- the "dialog" program inside the isolinux installer does not support file open dialog (it is, but not so good)
Lesson to learn: don't be lazy. If your heart say it is crap, other people will. So fix it as far as you can.
I believe the Vector developers have the right idea to install from the ISO image,
something I want to see fully supported in the stock Slackware and Zenwalk.
Yeah ... one compliment at last
AFAIK, no other distro can do this.
Why the developers limited the search pattern to the root directory is beyond me. Also, why did they modify that portion of the stock Slackware setup script where a user merely types a known external location? All of this left me cold. I think the Vector developers have tried to be too smart for their own good. They ought to restore that feature and when the user wants to install from an external directory, to avoid typing mistakes, use the pick list idea that they incorporated elsewhere.
See ... he gave a good suggestion.
Lesson: Always spare the hardway for the hardcore people
The setup dialog box instructed me that that I had to have at least a 512 MB swap partition. That is nonsense and unacceptable. Any box with 256 MB of RAM needs almost no swap partition at all.
That is true, for any common old box.
New boxes use /tmpfs, which requires some extra swap space.
And read somewhere, a database server asks for 2 MB swap.
Lesson to learn: He did not know, or ignored, that special systems really need special treatment.
So do we. Our installer was based on asumption that VL will be installed by ordinary people
on ordinary computers.
We will see that most of his problem was, because his system is not ordinary.
Read on ...
understand the need to empty a partition before beginning an installation, but I did not like the tone of the message.
Ok ok ... let's change the "no matter what" message.
Any suggestion ?
again ran into the nonsensical requirement to format the swap partition. Dammit, any box with an existing swap partition already has that partition formatted.
Well, room for improvement.
We tried to skip the swap file reformatting when it is already exist, but it was causing some problem.
We decided to "always reformat" the swap partition when we were testing VL Dynamite 5.x.
I remember vec said something like "I'm sure the system will be alright when the format swap dialog took a long time".
Right vec ?
No sooner was I feeling better that I again was back to feeling uneasy. I was able to map my partition scheme using the pick list, but I was not allowed to map my /usr/local partition, where I store all of my personal scripts and programs not installed from a distro package.
I also was denied any opportunity to map the /boot directory to my dedicated boot partition. This is where I maintain my kernels and GRUB files.
Quite a sophisticated system he had, didn't it ?
The actual installation went quietly. Nothing dramatic happened for 20 minutes or so
Hey ... maybe we can play some music while installing,
instead of the boring "running developers".
By the way, 20 minutes is quite long,
not to mention that he is installing from an ISO in the hard disk.
It would be take longer if he was installing from a CD.
Without informing me, Vector had installed a nominal KDE directory to my /opt partition.
When I selected my target partitions, I mapped /opt to its own partition.
This is what I have long done with Slackware and recently, with Zenwalk.
Dough ...., did I say his system is not ordinary ?
When I investigated the stock Vector /usr/local, I discovered the directory filled with many files. Another WTF moment. The file system hierarchy standard specifically allocates the /usr/local tree as being reserved for the end-user, not for the vendor. Installing files in my /usr/local file tree is a huge no-no.
We discussed this matter, didn't we.
So, who made that naughty packages ?
Yet, now I was really mad with Vector.
Quality control and consistency obviously is not a significant idea with the Vector people.
Any objection about this statement ?
I'm with him.
Lesson to learn :
This distro would not happened without the contribution of the community,
however, it is also hard to keep the consistency between many vectelopers.
I knew it when I was the chief of VL SOHO 5.0.
I received many contributed packages, some of them without the proper PREFIX,
CFLAGS, nor the description-pak (only the dafault made by checkinstall).
To check the consistency, I got to explore the package one by one (using mc).
That was a time consuming process, and when I found inconsistency,
most of the time I got to recompiled the package.
So for vectelopers, please follow the guidelines.
If we cannot maintain the consistency, we are no more than Slackware + www.linuxpackages.net