[RFC] Proposal of LiveCD project changes

Jeremy Huntwork jhuntwork at linuxfromscratch.org
Sun Oct 19 13:44:12 PDT 2008


First off, thanks to everyone for the comments given, they were very 
helpful. Based in part on the comments, and upon my own estimation of 
the project, I have a proposal to make wrt the future of the project.

I'll try to keep it as brief as possible, but here are the changes to 
the goals and rules of the project I'm proposing (comments, suggestions, 
corrections and questions most welcome):

1. Any officially supported and promoted release must not deviate from 
LFS or BLFS in any way.

    The purpose of this is to keep the CDs valid as working examples of
    both LFS and BLFS. I do not count as deviations configuration files
    or custom scripts to ease booting or configuring the CD. What I mean
    by deviation is installing packages that do not appear in either
    book, changing the build order for the base system, or using switches
    that either do not appear in the books or are not listed as
    possibilities. A secondary purpose is that by sticking closely to the
    books, it should make development and maintenance of the official CD

    This limitation will undoubtedly bring up questions regarding extra
    functionality that is currently covered in the latest CDs.
    See item 2 for that.

2. Packages or build parameters/methods which do not appear in LFS or 
BLFS, but which will undoubtedly increase the CD's value to large groups 
of users can be developed and released in "unofficial" CDs with the hope 
and intention that these changes can be pushed upstream to LFS or BLFS.

    A great example here is i18n. A good deal of i18n support is already
    covered in LFS, but there are undoubtedly tweaks that would improve
    the CD's usefulness but do not appear in the books. The "right thing
    to do" in my opinion, is to at the least allow for these sorts of
    modifications in LFS and BLFS. The unofficial CDs provide a sandbox
    for building and testing which can improve the quality and usefulness
    of the books.

3. The main official CD will be a minimal 'Core' CD. Basically bare LFS 
with just enough added BLFS functionality to connect to the internet (or 
a local network), read an LFS book online, download packages and render 
a book locally.

    What is actually included can be discussed and decided upon. I prefer
    once we decide that it be somewhat etched in stone, too. Other
    features can be covered in item 4.

4. Apart from the core, we can have extra "official" and "unofficial" 
packages which can be added to the core to produce an individual, custom 
CD. The difference between "official" and "unofficial" has to do with 
whether or not the package is included in BLFS and is built by-the-book.

    The extent to which we have and provide external packages is based
    the willingness of individuals within the community to maintain them.

5. The scripts to produce the core official CD shall be rewritten and 
shall look to be done via some PM for ease of maintenance and for ease 
of merging packages into the core.

    This may sound like it conflicts with item 1. Technically, it doesn't
    since LFS allows for a PM, but even so, it would have to be a PM
    which doesn't rely on some external libraries not present in LFS.
    Something simple based on tar and shell scripts would be my
    preference, although if we wanted to pursue something like RPM, we
    would have the opportunity to do so in an unofficial CD.

I would hope that by following the above, we would achieve solid, stable 
CDs, a more unified project as a whole, an 'easy to jump in' sort of 
framework which can allow for testing of experimental ideas and pushing 
up the quality of all books.

That's basically it... thoughts?


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