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Revision 94 as of 2007-12-13 21:15:49
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Revision 95 as of 2008-02-14 16:39:02
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 * '''pointrelease''' A cdebconf-gtk-entropy plug-in is needed if we want to be able to install on encrypted volumes using random keys with the the GTK frontend too.  * A cdebconf-gtk-entropy plug-in is needed if we want to be able to install on encrypted volumes using random keys with the the GTK frontend too.  [http://people.debian.org/~lunar/fe_gtk-plugin-entropy.c Code has been written] but needs integration and testing.
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 * Try to find a way to present information in columns despite using a proportional font. This may require extensions to the debconf protocol. This should also be generally useful for frontends used in the installed system for configuring packages. This idea could be extended to providing basic support for buleted or numbered lists.  * Try to find a way to present information in columns despite using a proportional font. This may require extensions to the debconf protocol. This should also be generally useful for frontends used in the installed system for configuring packages. An [http://lists.debian.org/debian-boot/2007/10/msg00400.html implementation has already been proposed] but needs a little more work before being integrated.
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 * Touchpad support in linux_input was added to DFB in CVS and then backported to 0.9.25-5 via a patch i wrote; Ville Sryala produced an updated, better, patch which we weren't able to include in our sources because of time constrains.[[BR]]As we want to give best support possible to laptop users Ville's patch should be fixed and backported in our sources. [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=400579 #400579][[BR]]This issue will get automatically fixed when we switch to DFB 1.0, which natively includes the fix.
 * Diagnostic tool dfbinfo is now provided by libdirectfb-udeb, later we should move it to a specific udeb, possibly with the df_input tool [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=390437 #390437]
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Candidates for inclusion need to have a limited set of dependencies, preferable only those that are already included in g-i, use directfb for graphics, eventually using SDL, sound should be optional, and not need more input device than already detected by g-i. The [http://lists.debian.org/debian-boot/2007/08/msg00560.html cdebconf-gtk-tetris] udeb is a start, but having a separate entry in the menu does not seem the best way to do it.

Other c
andidates for inclusion need to have a limited set of dependencies, preferable only those that are already included in g-i, use directfb for graphics, eventually using SDL, sound should be optional, and not need more input device than already detected by g-i.

Introduction

This is an overview of some of the bugs and issues left open or workarounded only in Etch and that i hope will be fixed later in a point release.

Items tagged as pointrelease are desiderata for next Etch pointrelease (mainly bugfixes), all other items refer to issues which will be addressed in Lenny only.

This is no way meant to be an exhaustive list of every bug somehow related to the graphical installer: for a complete buglist see packages [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/pkgreport.cgi?pkg=cdebconf-gtk-udeb cdebconf-gtk-udeb], [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/pkgreport.cgi?pkg=directfb directfb], [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/pkgreport.cgi?pkg=libdirectfb-0.9-25-udeb libdirectfb-0.9-25-udeb], [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/pkgreport.cgi?pkg=libgtk-directfb-2.0-0 libgtk-directfb-2.0-0], [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/pkgreport.cgi?pkg=libgtk-directfb-2.0-0 libgtk-directfb-2.0-0-udeb], [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/pkgreport.cgi?pkg=rootskel rootskel], [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/pkgreport.cgi?pkg=rootskel-gtk rootskel-gtk]

?TableOfContents([2])

Architecture independent issues

Per-architecture issues

We're trying to inventory bugs affecting the g-i on a per-architecture base, architectures considered here are i386, PowerPC, AMD64 .

i386 specific

  • For historical reasons the vga16fb module is still loaded even if a framebuffer device is already provided by vesafb: this forced us to check that DirectFB actually accesses the framebuffer device provided by vesafb , better would be not starting at all two fb devices concurrently (this also wastes little memory). [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=401685 #401685]

  • Some popular video chips, like intel i810, are not supported by the vesafb framebuffer module and hw-specific modules are not available in the installer, so we cannot currently support those chips. We need to either build into the kernel or provide as loadable modules hw specific framebuffer modules, and load them on the base of the found hardware [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=405737 #405737].

AMD64 specific

PowerPC specific

  • DirectFB linux_input input module cannot correctly detect the keyboard on most ?PowerMacintosh models, so we had to disable it relying on the legacy ps2mouse and keyboard input dr.?BRThis required the inclusion into rootskel and rootskel-gtk packages of some ad hoc startup scripts that take care of picking the correct DirectFB input driver depending on the host architecture.?BRA prper addressing of this issue requires fixing the linux_input module so that we can switch to linux_input input module for all supported architectures and drop some startup scripts.?BR?BR

  • Another issue is related to the fact that apparently DirectFB cannot run on top of the nvidia framebuffer: no more information are available because not much light was made on this problem yet.?BR?BR This [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=422146 thread] is about the two above mentioned issues, while a g-i on PowerPC compatibility list can be found here ["DebianInstaller/GUIPowerPC"]: feel free to add entries for any configuration that's not yet listed.?BR?BR

  • The framebuffer device has a fixed size that cannot be set at boot like it's done on i386, so the GTK frontend should adapt itself to go "fullscreen". [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=401693 #401693]

Ideas for future development

Porting

The graphical version of the installer is currently available for Intel x86, AMD64 and PowerPC. The PowerPC port [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=341597 needs work] to get different types of system correctly supported. Other architectures the graphical installer could be ported to include Sparc, Alpha and HPPA.

Fonts

For font information, please see ["DebianInstaller/GUIFonts"]

Usability

  • Interface should adapt itself so that text blocks are never too wide for optimal readability.
  • Improve accessability (for the visually handicapped). One way to do this is to [http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=339735 support different themes] (color schemes). (Note: should not lead to a major increase in initrd size.)

  • Alternative (graphical) ways to start a shell or browse log files
  • Logfile-viewer (in split window) in expert mode as default, if screen resolution permits
  • Interface design.
  • Create custom plug-ins for cdebconf to improve handling of some dialogs and make optimal use of possibilities offered by the graphical environment.

Interface design

Most of the work on the graphical side has been done by Eduardo Silva. He has set up a [http://www.geocities.com/jobezone/d-i_gtk.html webpage] with images he designed and some comments about possible future changes.

Games

It would be nice for g-i to have some games to help kill time during lengthy install sessions.

The [http://lists.debian.org/debian-boot/2007/08/msg00560.html cdebconf-gtk-tetris] udeb is a start, but having a separate entry in the menu does not seem the best way to do it.

Other candidates for inclusion need to have a limited set of dependencies, preferable only those that are already included in g-i, use directfb for graphics, eventually using SDL, sound should be optional, and not need more input device than already detected by g-i.

This excludes c++ implemented games linked against libstdc++, or other language whose runtime is not-available in g-i, as well as all those that link with the gnome libs or other such. A preliminary list follows, out of them, icebreaker sounds like a very good candidate. It is only depending on libsdl, easy to understand, using only the mouse and not the keyboard, and not controversial in any way.