[Mageia-discuss] Suggestions

Dale Huckeby spock at evansville.net
Tue Oct 26 16:00:32 CEST 2010

On Tue, 26 Oct 2010, Michael Scherer wrote:

> Le mardi 26 octobre 2010 à 02:28 +0200, Wolfgang Bornath a écrit :
>> In the individual package selection at system installation all these
>> descriptions are missing completely.
>> If somebody wants to pimp his installation and searches for
>> applications to be installed at system installation time all he sees
>> is the category (example: office), the package name and version and
>> then a mere "useful" or "important" or "comfortable.", etc. Nobody
>> tells him (examples:) what bvi is and how should he know what
>> "alexandria" does (is it an egyptian font?). This is where the
>> descriptions are missing completely although they are available in the
>> packages!
>> So, here the task is to include the descriptions in the installer and
>> providing the translations as in rpmdrake.
>> As we can see most parts of the package description issue are not
>> related to packagers, rather to developpers of rpmdrake and the
>> installer - and to the translators, of course.
> To the defense of the drakx developpers, I do not think that choosing in
> the installer is really a so good idea :

It might not be a good idea, but I like to do it, anyway. I ALWAYS check
individual package selection, I like to install stuff to check out, and
I find it difficult to make choices when description is lacking.

> - during installation, you do not have web access. Thus, you will have a
> hardtime to really find information on what does a software. If you use
> rpmdrake, you can ask to friend, ask on forum, ask on a search engine.
> - during installation, you do nothing except looking at installation.
> That's fine, but IMHO, it is better to have a fast installation, and
> later be able to listen to music, etc, while installing software.

Can't speak for others, but it's not better for me. I'm NOT in a hurry
during installation, and I'm not concerned about listening to music
or otherwise entertaining myself. The installation process IS the
entertainment for me, although I realize I might not be representative.

> - looking at software in drakx or in rpmdrake will likely take the same
> time. If you take 1h to select rpm in drakx, you will likely spend 1h in
> rpmdrake. The computing is taking less time that the human mind to
> decide. Of course, people will perceive differently ( ie they will feel
> the installation is incomplete if they need to do thing after the first
> boot, even if they have to do the exact same task taking the exact same
> time in drakx and rpmdrake ), but then that's just a perception.
> Unfortunately, perception is what count more than reality.

It's my perception that I like cherry pie and lemonade and it's my 
perception that I like to have descriptions of packages when I'm doing
an install. If that's not feasible, or if it's not fair to a majority
whose needs it conflicts with, that's one thing. But telling people
what they ought or ought not to like is spitting in the wind.

> So why don't we have this description. I am not sure about this, but I
> think drakx use synthesis hdlists, ie a shorter version oof the packages
> index. And parsing description is one of the reason rpmdrake is spending
> time at startup. Synthesis is 750 k big, hdlist is 46 m big. There is a
> huge gap. This would take place on the cd, this take place in memory,
> and this make drakx be slower when solving dependency ( even if I do not
> know how much slower it would be, maybe that's negligible with nowadays
> computer ).
> Then, in order to accelerate the installation for the people who do not
> select package one by one at install time ( that's IMHO the common use
> case of drakx ), part of the confort of those that does was sacrified,
> mainly because this feature is aimed to advanced users more than new
> users discovering Linux ( who would and should take the easiest road of
> keeping default selection ).
> I think drakx could implement the required behavior, but I do not think
> it would come with problem by itself. And so, we need to evaluate the
> rpos and cons of the change ( and as I said, I think the current
> situation is better for a majority of users ).

Whether or not the points you make are valid, and I can see some sense
in them, in the three paragraphs above you address the relevant issues 
of space utilization (on the DVD) and the wishes or needs of perhaps
the majority of users.

> Finally, in order to mitigate the issue, I would propose to add a
> warning or a label saying "this is for advanced users, we suggest you to
> do the customization after installation, as we would be able to show
> more informations about packages". This would not solve anything for
> people who still want to do it in drakx, of course, but at least, it
> will explain how to have a better experience for the new user. I am not
> sure if we should add explanation about why it is like this ( maybe too
> technical ).

Don't have any problem with that.

Dale Huckeby

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