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Debian Operating Systems Software Linux

Debian Lenny Installer RC1 Arrives 81

Posted by timothy
from the not-lenny-from-of-mice-and-men dept.
nerdyH writes "It appears that Debian 5.0 (aka "Lenny") will soon take its big binocular eyes out into the wider world. Only two months later than expected, the Debian project has completed the first release candidate of Lenny's installer. Featuring much faster installation from "live" CDs, and expanded support for ARM-based devices such as NAS servers, Lenny has gestated for 19 months, compared to 21 months for the previous "Etch" release. Lookout, world, Debian releases are picking up speed! The download is here."
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Debian Lenny Installer RC1 Arrives

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  • by thermian (1267986) on Thursday November 13, 2008 @06:36PM (#25754005)

    Lets be honest, almost everyone interested in Debian won't be put off by its already excellent text based installer. Has it suddenly become 'old fashioned' or something?

    Anyone of the livecd liking type is likely to be better off with Ubuntu. Well I think so anyway.

    • by squisher (212661) on Thursday November 13, 2008 @06:46PM (#25754135)

      Nope, I disagree. I have no problems with a text installer, but I still think the live cd installer is a useful feature. I'd prefer to use that if I have the option.

      I just think it is nice to have the option to do something with the computer while it's installing. Installing is I/O heavy, so i.e. surfing the web or playing a little game does not slow it down.

      • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Thursday November 13, 2008 @07:03PM (#25754343) Journal
        I'm inclined to agree with you on that one. I have nothing against text based installers(heck, I don't mind the bit in the OpenBSD installer where it recommends a calculator); but LiveCDs are really useful on occasion, and making a LiveCD that can also be an installer is an obvious convenience measure. I wouldn't mind having the LiveCD installer just be the text based installer in a window; but LiveCDs are an obvious good, and once you have a LiveCD, adding an installer is simple and useful thing.
      • I just think it is nice to have the option to do something with the computer while it's installing.

        Debian comes with a complete implementation of Mine Sweeper inside the Aptitude installer itself.

        Or if you really need it, virtual terminals are also working. You can simply [CTRL]+[F#] into another one and "links" Slashdot.org. Or ssh into another box and play nethack.

        Debian installer CD is as close to a LiveCD as possible in the realm of textmode/console apps. :-P

    • by renegadesx (977007) on Thursday November 13, 2008 @06:48PM (#25754151)
      Knoppix: "Hey, I'm still alive you know!"

      Poor old Knoppix, really was the first to prefect the whole LiveCD thing and now its commonplace amongst distro's most people forgot where it really came from.
      • by rcw-home (122017) on Thursday November 13, 2008 @06:56PM (#25754259)

        most people forgot where it really came from

        Yggdrasil? [wikipedia.org]

        • Yes I know Knoppix didn't start it thats why I said "prefected". It was when Knoppix got popular that distro's started doing live CD's and live installs.
          • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

            by TeknoHog (164938)
            [OT] The first time you wrote "prefected" I suspected a typo. I'm sure you meant "perfected". You could also leave out the apostrophes in plurals and use "distros" and "CDs" instead. Though I guess a real Grammar Nazi will now follow with the possible correctness of "CD's" ;)
      • I still use Knoppix on a regular basis because of its excellent hardware detection. However, having once tried using the Knoppix installer to convert the live CD to a Debian install, I would never do it again. The result is ugly, whereas the newer desktop oriented distros do this really well.
        • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Klaus himself discourages using Knoppix as an installer, recommending Debian instead.

          However, as a standalone livecd (now exclusively a livedvd), Knoppix remains unbeaten in OOB functionality and compatibility.

    • by mpapet (761907) on Thursday November 13, 2008 @06:51PM (#25754195) Homepage

      I've been a Lenny user for at least 6 months and performed a number of server and desktop installs with some versions of the new installer.

      The most important part of the installer that has changed for the better is you can easily start the installation by selecting from gui and text options from a menu. The Etch installer you had to type something to start the installer.

      The Lenny installer runs circles around the Ubuntu installer. Among other cool details you can configure LVM, or software raids prior to the disk formatting and installation.

      I got KDE4 packages from http://kde4.debian.net/ [debian.net] Absolutely the best way to go for kde4.

      • What your are calling features are WHY ubuntu is more popular than debian. Your average user doesn't know about LVM, raid arrays, encrypted partitions, etc, these options are there for the alternative installer though.

        Now dont get me wrong i have nothing against debian showing these options but criticizing ubuntu for meeting its goal of being easy tp use is a bit unfair, it would be like criticizing Gentoo for compiling too much.

      • by Mkx (614118)

        The Lenny installer runs circles around the Ubuntu installer. Among other cool details you can configure LVM, or software raids prior to the disk formatting and installation.

        Ubuntu Server Edition installer also allows you to configure SW RAID and LVM. It's just Ubuntu Desktop Edition that makes things easy for lusers.

      • by daveewart (66895)

        The most important part of the installer that has changed for the better is you can easily start the installation by selecting from gui and text options from a menu. The Etch installer you had to type something to start the installer.

        Thank goodness for that. Now I can install Debian on all my systems which don't have a keyboard. Phew!

      • I didn't have a problem with the old installer being text-based. I just wish it had given you more control over program installation. It'd be nice to have the program choices broken down into categories with the default noted for beginners.

        I normally install just the base then set up the repositories, install the stripped down kde and aptitude. Boot and just use aptitude to install the rest.

      • Install via SSH has to be the best part about the debian installer. I get it to the point where SSH is enabled then go watch TV with my laptop and let the installer finish.

    • Pardon my off-topicness and my old fogieness, but I still can't help but laugh when someone says "excellent installer" in reference to Debian. It used to be the absolute worst and was known far and wide for being the absolute worst to do a clean install with. I remember printing out installation instructions off the web that were 8 pages long with a regular-size font! Followed those instructions to the letter, made sure I had compatible hardware, the instructions were written by a dev and were linked to fro
      • by setagllib (753300)

        Why not fire it up in a VM and see? Even Ubuntu uses Debian's installer as its "Alternate" installer, the preferred method for power users. It's a pretty good product now.

        And I agree, the old installer sucked. Especially dselect. Argh.

        • I don't have a machine to spare right now to experiment with. But I always upgrade the hardware every summer, by which time Lenny should be a final release so I'll try it then.
    • Text installer is fine, but LiveCD is not only useful for installing the OS.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by somersault (912633)

      Anyone of the livecd liking type is likely to be better off with Ubuntu. Well I think so anyway.

      You don't need a full LiveCD to do a graphical install, so I don't see what that has to do with anything. Has it occured to you that it might be nothing to do with the installer?

      I have gone through plenty of text based installers over the years without issue, they're basically exactly the same as the graphical installers, just the graphical ones aren't as fugly. What's wrong with wanting to make things look better? Not 1337 enough for you?

      For me it's always been about being able to test out the distro with

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 13, 2008 @06:39PM (#25754051)

    It has very poor mouse support.

  • Ok, am I the only one who read Lesbian Denny?
    I should cease my attempts at speed reading...

    • by jonadab (583620)
      > Ok, am I the only one who read Lesbian Denny?

      Yes. I'm pretty sure every other regular reader of slashdot was already very much aware, before seeing this story, that Lenny is the codename for the upcoming release of Debian. In fact, given that the words "Lenny" and especially "Debian" are a good deal more important to most of us, and are words we see and use much more often, than the words "Lesbian" and "Denny", I imagine that if the article had been misprinted as "Lesbian Denny", a lot of us probably
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Ecuador (740021)

        My bad. I guess not many /.ers would like to read about lesbians rather than debian...
        I would swear there would be Ubuntu & Opensuse fans here ;)

      • given that the words "Lenny" and especially "Debian" are a good deal more important to most of us

        You realise you're talking about a bunch of geeks who stereotypically have never seen a real life woman? Slashdotter's, new poll:

        [ ] Lesbian
        [ ] Debian

        We'll let the masses decide.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by jimicus (737525)

      Ok, am I the only one who read Lesbian Denny?

      Thanks.

      I administer a whole bunch of Linux servers and I'm never going to be able to get that out of my head.

      I'm going to be ringing up hosting providers and asking if they support "Lesbian Denny".

      I'm going to be emailing software vendors and asking if their product runs under "Lesbian Denny".

      I'm going to be posting on mailing lists asking if anyone's succeeded in installing the latest build on "Lesbian Denny".

  • What about release critical bugs? Currently there are 173 of them:
    http://bugs.debian.org/release-critical/ [debian.org]

    I thought that they won't be releasing next version before they are fixed. And even with optimal speed it looks like it would take at least 1,5 months to get them all fixed.

    And some estimate that it would be 2009-06 before the release happens:
    http://blog.venthur.de/2008/10/07/lennys-release-date/ [venthur.de]

    • Re:What about bugs? (Score:5, Informative)

      by jonadab (583620) on Thursday November 13, 2008 @07:30PM (#25754631) Homepage Journal
      > What about release critical bugs? Currently there are 173 of them:

      Most of those bugs are not in the installer. If you read the summary (not even the actual article, just the summary) carefully, you'll note that this is a release candidate of the *installer*, not of the whole distro. I would imagine the distribution as a whole is probably still on schedule for the originally promised timeframe of "when it's ready".
    • What about release critical bugs?

      Oh, come one...like that's ever stopped Microsoft or Apple from releasing an OS. Case in points: Windows Vista, OS X Leopard. Both of these had serious issues on launch, to put it mildly. The only difference is that with Debian, we can look up what the bugs are because Debian is honest. Anyway, if Debian fixed all those bugs, then they'd never release anything -- look at what those bugs are, most of them are in packages in debian, which relies on the package maintaine

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      > What about release critical bugs? Currently there are 173 of them
      Better take a look at http://bts.turmzimmer.net/graph-large.png [turmzimmer.net], which provides more accurate stats.

      > I thought that they won't be releasing next version before they are fixed. And even with optimal speed it
      > looks like it would take at least 1,5 months to get them all fixed.

      Packages with RC bugs can either be fixed or removed, it's always been that way.

      • Packages with RC bugs can either be fixed or removed
        or ignored, just because someone has marked a bug as serious or higher severity doesn't nessacerally mean the release team consider it critical to fix before release.

  • Only two months later than expected, the Debian project has completed the first release candidate of Lenny's installer.

    Unfortunately, an installer RC is not the final distribution release.

    Lookout, world, Debian releases are picking up speed!

    I don't think so. It'll still take a couple more months before the final Lenny release will be out. There will yet be another installer release candidate (RC2), and that will also need some further testing before the final release.

    Still, I think the Lenny release will be

    • by Braino420 (896819)

      Debian doesn't put out half-assed and buggy releases just to meet arbitrary release dates, like Ubuntu does.

      I'll bite. They're called release cycles, and many open source projects, such as gnome and the linux kernel, also do it.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        Also Debian has release cycles, you know. But while Ubuntu's release cycles are inflexible and tied to arbitrary release dates, Debian's release cycles are more flexible and they can afford to wait until the release has actually become stable and ready.

        You mention GNOME and Linux as examples that other projects should follow, but you should remember that the early GNOME2 releases were unusable crap, as were were the early Linux 2.6 releases. KDE4 also makes time-based releases now, and so far their releases

  • Using Lenny now (Score:4, Insightful)

    by chrome (3506) <chrome.stupendous@net> on Thursday November 13, 2008 @08:27PM (#25755275) Homepage Journal
    Been running Lenny on my servers, and its been pretty solid. I notice a lot of people suggesting Ubuntu for servers. I'm not keen, for several reasons. Mostly, because Ubuntu generally keep things 'fresher' they also tend to drop in beta or alpha quality versions of things that they shouldn't. Case in point was the DRBD packages recently were broken on Ubuntu because they dropped in an unstable development version. Oops. Ubuntu is great for the desktop, and Debian is great for the server farm.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      debian is great for everything.

      ubuntu is great for laptops that want an easier way to get 2.6.27 running their wireless until testing gets un-frozen.

      that's the only reason i'd recommend ubuntu for longer than a week

  • by Matt Perry (793115) <perry.matt54@[ ]oo.com ['yah' in gap]> on Thursday November 13, 2008 @10:10PM (#25756321)

    Do the versions of Apache and OpenSSL support SNI so we can have virtual hosts with SSL?

    • by Lennie (16154)

      The answer to that question seems to be yes.

      Why do you care so much ? From the Apache manual: "At this time no web browsers support RFC 2817."

      For example Mozilla/FireFox has it on there brainstorm page:

      https://wiki.mozilla.org/Firefox/Feature_Brainstorming:Security [mozilla.org]

      But there are problems:

      The problem is that the security depends entirely on the server deciding
      not to serve the content over plain unencrypted HTTP . The client has no
      control. If the server is misconfigured, or there is an MITM, the client
      will go

      • Why do you care so much ? From the Apache manual: "At this time no web browsers support RFC 2817."

        That is the RFC for StartTLS which is something different. I'm talking about SNI [wikipedia.org] which is already supported in Firefox 2, Opera 8, and IE 7. It is also in Apache 2.2.8 [apache.org] and OpenSSL 0.9.8f [openssl.org].

  • i tried the testing net install a month or so back. i'd been running on the same debian install for a couple years and wanted to start fresh. anyway, it was the first time in about 8-9 years that debian had left me with a unusable system.

    i ended up going with ubuntu.
    not perfect, but real close.

    i hope they got what ever the problem was fixed.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by X0563511 (793323)

      The net installer keeps breaking when they play with the repo signing keys. Don't use a net installer for testing. Try this RC instead.

  • Carl?

If Machiavelli were a hacker, he'd have worked for the CSSG. -- Phil Lapsley

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