LiveCD or No LiveCD?

Robert Daniels 0m3g4_w34p0n at earthlink.net
Mon Feb 25 12:00:27 PST 2008


> > It has recently been suggested to me that the LFS LiveCD project be
> > killed. The main arguments for this are, essentially:
> >
> > 1) It is currently unmaintained
> > 2) It removes the essential prerequisite of being able to configure
> > a Linux system
> > 3) It leads to less testing from other hosts
> > 4) A seeming lack of community interest in contributing.
> > Especially, essential testing (and reports on the results of
> > tests!) on varied hardware does not seem to be taking place
>
> I say drop the project.  Let me explain why.
>
> There are generally speaking two types of LFS users -- first time
> users and veteran users.  We can assume for both groups that these
> are experienced linux users -- the fact that they've heard of LFS and
> are brave/confident enough to try it says a lot.  These are people
> who are comfortable enough and knowledgeable enough to find answers
> to problems they come across compiling LFS on their specific host
> architecture/distribution.  These are people who can boot with any of
> the other live cds out there and compile LFS.
>
> There is always the chance that an inexperienced user might stumble
> upon LFS. But this type of user would not be too comfortable with a
> very limitted live CD such as the LFS live CD.  This type of user
> would most likely have achieved a level of comfort with the polish
> and nice features of an already installed distribution to venture
> into the uncharted waters of a live CD.
>
> The best approach is to wisely use the limitted manpower LFS has and
> channel it into LFS itself rather than dissipate it over a multitude
> of spin-off projects.  We should hitch our wagon to an existing live
> cd platform -- be it ubuntu or knoppix or one of the other good ones
> there.  No need to reinvent the wheel.
>
> The problem with using someone else's live cd is that there probably
> won't be enough, if any, development tools included on the CD.  But
> you can include a prebuilt toolchain and the sources for the current
> LFS version and have the user chroot into that and just continue from
> chapter 6.  Like we do it in IPCop, as Gilles already wrote.
>
> IvanK.

I would also say to drop the livecd.

As a user, I think it is a convenience, but just a convenience.  
Especially for newer lfsers, as it contains both a copy of the book and 
the necessary sources.  The more veteran lfs users I think are  more 
capable of obtaining these things on their own, and also more likely 
than the newbie to build svn versions of the book, making the included 
sources largely irrelevant.

LFS can be built just fine from pretty much any random livecd the user 
may choose to use, and I think the distros' work should be leveraged 
here.

Basically, I agree with what Ivan has said.  The only thing I would add 
is that lfs should test against a few of the more popular distros, and 
add a page to the preface listing distros known to work, or append it 
to the 'Host System Requirements' page.  I think this would give newer 
lfsers what they are looking for in the livecd: a known-good starting 
point.

My 2c
Robert



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