[arch-releng] Helping with AIF

Dieter Plaetinck dieter at plaetinck.be
Tue Jul 31 12:11:16 EDT 2012

On Tue, 31 Jul 2012 15:24:38 +0200
Alexander Rødseth <rodseth at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi,
> 2012/7/27 Jeremiah Dodds <jeremiah.dodds at gmail.com>:
> > I find the "configuration bundles" idea interesting, but I wonder how
> > much of it is needed on a per-machine basis. I haven't run into many
> > machine-specific issues, but then again I'm sure they exist.
> I've encountered a lot of machine-specific issues, setting up (Arch)
> Linux on several computers. Especially laptops often need extra
> modules loaded to make the sound card, network card or video camera to
> work, possibly with a couple of firmware-packages thrown into the mix.
> Specifying all it takes to set up a machine in a single, easy to read,
> text file, shared among Arch Linux users in the same fashion as
> AUR-packages is shared, would be an improvement, IMO.

there's a bunch of configuration management tools written for this use case already.
like chef, puppet, ansible. many of these concerns are relatively easy to abstract for multiple distributions,
so writting a new tool that only targets Arch is not a good idea imho.

> > The end-result I'm working toward is providing a service that allows
> > people to generate linux live and install images that have what they
> > want on them already -- I've written a proof-of-concept webapp that
> > installs a package on a live and install cd that I intend to start a
> > kickstarter with[1]. My goal is to allow college kids and newer linux
> > users to create something that will give them access to the system
> > they need or want in case of failure or circumstance, and allow it to
> > perform (if desired) unattended installs.

an installation of any system should put only the basic system in place (incl. a config management tool),
everything else should be done by configuration management.
this makes it easier to alter the configuration of a machine long after it has been installed.

> In either case: no matter the approach and no matter the authors, I'm
> looking forward to the next generation of installers.

configuration management should not be tied to only the installation process.

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