Subject: pkg_* tools and doc (was Re: new i386 snapshot uploaded)
To: Tom T. Thai <>
From: Alistair Crooks <>
List: current-users
Date: 09/03/1997 02:32:37
> Redhat4.2 has a really nice install script, BUT I think it's overkill.  A
> shell script would be perfect and small enough to fit on the floppy.
> While you are at it, could you do a package installation script so new
> users can install precompiled bins easily? :)

This (pkg installation of pre-compiled binaries) is being worked on at
the moment. However, there's enough in-place in the -current source
tree to allow us to use the pkg_* tools to do it. This was one of the
original motivations in importing this functionality from FreeBSD. More
as and when it happens.

Should there be a two-level installation procedure? One for people who
(think they) know what they're doing, similar to the bare-bones shell
script that's done us proudly since 0.8 days (but enhanced so that it does
the disk sector arithmetic for you, please!), and an X11 interface
that has you clicking at it all day, but is really just:

	1. partition disk to standard sizes
	2. install bootblocks, kernel and binaries
	3. loop displaying random gifs, announcing various mailing list
	addresses, displaying gifs of core, composing random licence
	texts, splitting off to form breakaway installations because it
	doesn't like the responses it's getting back from the Ethernet card, etc

This third step doesn't accomplish anything, but as you've been working
so hard with/at it all day, you feel a huge sense of achievement. I
feel that's what we've been missing with previous releases.

Having said that, Perry's SSTO stuff in -current is heaps better than
the old ways - thanks, Perry.

Perhaps all this should go to tech-install?

> Related to this, I'm itching to do a pretty comprehensive HOWTO
> documentation project for NetBSD.. anyone having the same itch?

Take a look at the FreeBSD doc project, if you can - they're using some
fancy SGML-based stuff that sounds like it's nice, nice, nice. Looks like
we can learn from them here as well.