[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: An easy-to-install Hurd distribution

From: Robert Marlow
Subject: Re: An easy-to-install Hurd distribution
Date: Thu, 30 Nov 2000 00:26:25 +0800 (WST)

Hash: SHA1

On Wed, 29 Nov 2000, Robert J. Chassell wrote:

>    > I am batting around the idea of a Hurd distribution, like Red Hat and 
>    > all the rest do their own Linux distributions.
> This is a wonderful plan.  Please go for it!
> I will install the Hurd if it comes as a good, not-too-hard-to-install
> distribution.

Debian GNU/HURD is intended to be just that - a Debian operating 
system which utilises GNU and HURD rather than, for example, GNU
and Linux in the currently popular Debian GNU/Linux distribution.
Debian GNU/HURD should consequently be available with basically
all the functionality found in Debian GNU/Linux.

This is what is currently being worked on. Debian GNU/HURD is
not currently stable or software supported enough yet to be 
distributed as confidently as Debian GNU/Linux is. In my mind this
goal would be acheived more quickly and efficiently if efforts
were directed to getting GNU/HURD completed first before branching
off into other distributions. A combined effort is more productive
than a scattered one.

> 1. Specify the appropriate deb line in my 
>         /etc/apt/sources.list 

This file is typically more useful when customised for you global
locality. Examples are provided on how to configure this file as
well as manpages. Perhaps it could be improved by providing 
configurations for the list of currently known mirrors but this is
more of an apt issue than a HURD distribution issue.

>    file on a Pentium 100 machine currently running Debian GNU/Linux,
>    including X Windows, on 23 Mbytes of RAM.

This file is not dependant on the specs of the computer it is 
located on.

> 2. Let me run the following on that machine under Debian GNU/Linux,
>         apt-get install task-hurd
>    and download via my existing telephone dial up no more than 20 or
>    30 megabytes of .deb files that then install themselves.

Dependency issues make this type of setup difficult. It is not just 
an issue of downloading 20/40MB of .debs and expecting them all to 
install, the .debs must ensure that all packages required for 
installation are also present. This generally involves the majority
of the packages apt attempts to download.

> 2a. perhaps, in the process, offer to repartition my hard disk if
>     needed, with good explanations and reasonable suggestions, both
>     for the current drive in the machine (850 Mb) and for a different,
>     larger drive (5.2 Gb).  You can assume that the current Debian
>     GNU/Linux distribution on this machine takes up 550Mb.

The Debian GNU/HURD distribution will likely ship with disk 
partitioning utilities just as GNU/Linux is. GNU/HURD will be
independant of GNU/Linux however so providing assumed defaults for
a linux distribution which may not be there may create more
unecessary confusion than it solves.

> 3. Reboot the machine with a choice at the boot prompt of running
>    either Linux or Hurd.

This is already possible using GRUB. Again, assuming Linux on the
machine is perhaps not the best strategy though.

> 4. Boot successfully when I choose Hurd, and incorporate into the Hurd
>    configuration files the the PPP and other such kernel-independent
>    configuration information that the current Debian GNU/Linux already
>    has so I don't have to retype the information.

Not a bad point - making available the choice to obtain system
configuration information from a Debian GNU/Linux partition or
whatever may speed the process for such users at no big cost. Any
thoughts on this, anyone?

>    which will take the sources for Debian GNU/Linux 2.2 (potato)
>    that I have on three CDs and build them into GNU/Hurd applications.
>    Compute ahead of time approximately how long the build will take
>    (on this machine, possibly several days). 

If you like Debian on CD then maybe purchasing GNU/HURD on CD when
it becomes available would be a valuable investment. It would be 
quicker alternative to the several months that you are likely to 
expect from compiling each required package on your pentium 100.

- --

da Bobstopper
(Public Key available at

Version: GnuPG v1.0.4 (GNU/Linux)
Comment: For info see


reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]