LiveCD or No LiveCD?

Alexander E. Patrakov patrakov at gmail.com
Tue Feb 26 00:32:06 PST 2008


2008/2/25, Jeremy Huntwork <jhuntwork at linuxfromscratch.org>:
>  I grant that it is a convenience to start from a system that
>  you know has worked for others in building LFS, instead of perhaps
>  trudging through setting up another distro.

The point is that the LFS target audience is already familiar with
another distro (for veterans, this is a previous version of LFS) and
has already set it up.

>  But it is, at the least, a
>  very useful convenience for long-time users of LFS

Indeed, this seems to be the case where the use of a LiveCD is
justified. However, a pre-made binary LiveCD may fail for certain "too
new" hardware, or may lack some software that is needed for a
particular user. An instruction how to make your own LiveCD that suits
you would be, IMHO, more in line with the rest of the project. Such
instruction is already "almost" available:

http://linuxfromscratch.org/pipermail/livecd/2007-October/005090.html,
with some typos fixed in
http://linuxfromscratch.org/pipermail/livecd/2007-November/005150.html,
so one only has to explain the magic scripts.

There was also a report that scripts from http://www.linux-live.org/
work with LFS, but I didn't read or test them at all.

>  means to allow a user to experience LFS where there are otherwise
>  hardware or bandwidth limitations.

For hardware, see above. For bandwidth limitations, I think this is a
red herring (note: when I started doing LFS, I was on dialup). Reason:
the person has to have some prior Linux experience in order to start
LFSing. So, it is safe to assume that he already has a CD with a
distro he is familiar with. IOW, without the LiveCD, he has to
download the dirstro, spend some time learning, then download the LFS
packages and build his LFS. With the LiveCD, he has to download the
dirstro, spend some time learning, then download the LiveCD, which
includes all the source packages - and that's more megabytes than in
the "no-CD" variant.

Also note how many people replied to this thread and reported that the
LiveCD worked for them while a regular distro didn't--each case should
be investigated whether it is a bug in the book or a failure of the
user to meet the prerequisites
(http://www.tldp.org/HOWTO/Software-Building-HOWTO.html) and build at
least one piece of software before starting LFS.

OTOH, there is a valid point that the LFS project would benefit from a
proof of its soundness (e.g., in the form of a binary LiveCD that,
unlike the current CD, follows the books).

-- 
Alexander E. Patrakov



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