[arch-general] Fifa: Flexible Installer Framework for Arch linux

Dieter Plaetinck dieter at plaetinck.be
Thu Oct 30 18:05:46 EDT 2008

Hi all,
at first I wanted to make an automated installer for Arch Linux (with
scripts that specify all the specific aspects of the system).  When
starting to build this, I looked at the archboot scripts (/arch/setup
and /arch/quickinst on the install cd) and noticed that I could re-use
lots of code if it would have been split up more (eg I can't just source
the useful functions in /arch/setup, I have to source the whole thing
and hence, start the installer).

So I started writing "Fifa: the Flexible Installer Framework for Arch
linux" : http://github.com/Dieterbe/fifa

It's designed to be a general, flexible framework for installations.  
It uses the concepts of 'phases' and 'workers'.  There are 4 phases
(preparation, basics, system, finish), which can each invoke workers (to
get a package list, install packages, install boot loader etc etc).  The
workers and phases can be overridden by creating profiles.  So the whole
idea is you can create whatever installation procedure you like
(prescripted, autodetection, interactive,...) and you can combine
functionality from different profiles and you can reuse lots of code.

Keep it mind it's still very, very early in development.  It doesn't
work yet, but if you look at the code you'll see the basic ideas (and
the code is maybe simpler then the explanation).

Right now I'm still working on better understanding the archboot
scripts, refactoring that code to make it reusable and building an
automated, prescripted installer for
myself.  ( Once the basics are working, it should actually be very
simple to port the current archboot scripts to this system. )

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