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Old 06-25-2005, 06:28 PM
LycanthroLabs LycanthroLabs is offline
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Default Easy Install?
Just a thought, but one I think needs to be asked. I have 7 computers here and I have tried the install on all of them (just to see how far it will get) -- The install craps out on 4 of them, this is a less than 50% success rate!

Granted, some of the hardware is a little strange, but I have installed FreeBSD on all of the systems without a hitch.

The point is, what really is so crucial about an easy install... it seems that a decade of magazines "reviewing" OSes based primarily on the installation has lead many to believe that a full GUI, point and click install is that hallmark of a good OS? I argue just to opposite, the FreeBSD text based install is great -- look at the most popular Linux distro right now, Ubuntu's install is just Debian, text based, simple and it works.

Afterall, how many times does the average user install their OS? Most would hope to only have to do it as seldom as possible -- those that make a living installing an OS have developed their own installation script anyway.

So, what is wrong with the FreeBSD installer? It is fast, simple and it works... why fix what ain't broke?
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Old 06-25-2005, 06:59 PM
pcbsdusr pcbsdusr is offline
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Take it easy... Problems will be solved. It's beta software...
It´s impossible it could be done 100% right at the first shot.

It's also not fair that you compare a finished/polished instalation process with a brand new one. Those issues will be adressed and solved for sure.

A lot of bugs/misconfigurations should be solved in PCBSD 0.75 which was released today. I sugest you test it again but you should be aware that new stuff was added to the installer (partitioning) so new bugs may appear...

Cheers! Renato Flórido
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Old 06-26-2005, 06:53 AM
LycanthroLabs LycanthroLabs is offline
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Default Just wondering why?
I am not saying that it can, or even will be done... just wondering why?

The FreeBSD installer works great, why not put the effort into a polished package manager and configuration tools?

As I said, most people only install an OS about as often as they buy a new car -- I guess I am just miffed by the current idealogue that an OS is only as good as its installer, when it seems that the measure that should be used is how seldom does the user have to reinstall?

Anyway, not dinging on PCBSD, I think it is a great idea... it just seems a little bogged down at the gate?
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Old 06-26-2005, 11:16 AM
pcbsdusr pcbsdusr is offline
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I guess next release should be dedicated to bug fixing rather that adding new functionality.

It is already known that the installation doesnt work for everibody, even for people which can install FBSD5.4 without problems.

We can ask Kris to concentrate on this solely for a bit and try to solve the installation problems before we can resume on adding functionality.

I am 18 minutes away from instaling 0.75. I will probabily suggest to the people here the bugfixing period as the next move so that we dont scare people away...

Have you tried 0.75 yet?

Cheers!

Renato
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Old 06-29-2005, 11:54 AM
sblevin sblevin is offline
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I'd be all for a text installer - but go the OTHER way and be the coolest RETRO look : )

Green black backgraound with glaring, super bright green text in a square, boxy font that's too big, and all screen logging set to ULTRA verbose : )

Maybe just the thinest X shell with a picture of a 1950's TV or and IBM original, with the text constrained to the "screen" area ..... or Mother from Alien ....... anyway ...........

In my opinion FreeBSD's text installer was a nightmare when it came to configuring your disks/partitions - EEEUUCH!!! And the menus often left you (me that is) wondering if you (I actually HAD configured something or just exited the menu.
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Old 07-01-2005, 05:09 AM
LycanthroLabs LycanthroLabs is offline
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Default Retro?
I will agree that the text installer for fBSD may seem awkward the first couple of times, but the install manual (which, if you are printing yourself on a inkjet is spendy) helps a lot... and after a couple of hundred installs, it is really a very nice routine.

The drive configuration is odd, I will give you that, but if you are used to working with unix "slices" it is not that bad -- I have yet to see a Linux installer that offers drive configuration using sfdisk? Regular fdisk is horrible, even the man page for it tells you not to use it! Then there is cfdisk, nice for those that really are not sure what they are doing, but very limited for those that do? Along the same line is parted, more powerful than cfdisk, but cludgy and still limited -- yet sfdisk is not offered as a drive setup option by any of the big Linuces? It seems that "pretty and easy" are more important than "powerful and correct" with most installers?

Patrick Volkerding (Slackware) once told me that with Linux, the installer "is" the distro -- it seems that this idea is prevalent to the point that few care much beyond how easy it goes... even if the user is denied choices and options that they may wish they could have had?

There are a few that are notable... CRUX of course, is the defacto standard in DIY installations, and ArchLinux basically copies the base OS over, then dumps you in an editor, so you can write your config files -- but you get a choice of vim or nano! And of course Slackware, which a lot of people like because of the BSD style insallation.

I am not dinging on mindless installation routines and I know that the less the user sees and has to do, the more the developer must take care of in the background... I applaude the PCBSD team for this. I just would like to see the option to drop to a text based installation that gives full control to the user -- it seems that this would even help debug things, as the user reports could be far more accurate than "it gets to a gray screen and freezes"?

I know that most of these examples are Linux based, but that is the alternative OS of choice with most, and the most trotted out to the "common user" -- for that crowd, the wysiwyg installer is probably best? Or maybe I am just too used to the old ways? Too retro?
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Old 07-11-2005, 07:22 PM
aldube aldube is offline
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Oh ya; there´s always going be be wize guys that want everyone else todo things the hard and time consuming way. :roll:

For those of you who don´t care about easy Free BSD installs; why are you even bothering the PC-BSD members with insults, criticism, and negetivity. :?

Not everyone is a programmer, network admin, or geek with lots of time on their hands. I´ve been wanting to use BSD for years; however, it´s no darn fun to install. :x

The PC-BSD team is working on a noble project that *BSDs should of done years ago. :wink:
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Old 07-11-2005, 08:50 PM
unix_chix unix_chix is offline
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Quote:
Not everyone is a programmer, network admin, or geek with lots of time on their hands. I´ve been wanting to use BSD for years; however, it´s no darn fun to install. Mad

The PC-BSD team is working on a noble project that *BSDs should of done years ago. Wink
I agree. I have been taking a bit of heat from freeBSD fellows who wonder why I bother with PCBSD as opposed to freeBSD. I have tried to install fBSD 5.4 (miminal install) a couple of times & came up empty-handed on both occasions :?
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Old 07-18-2005, 02:42 PM
chasecrum chasecrum is offline
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Default another possibility
I'm not sure, but something doesn't quite sound right. (I COULD BE WRONG), but it almost sounds like you got a bad copy. Did you checksum ? Maybe there was an error downloading or something. I've installed this on three complety different machines over the weekend and they all went without a hitch. I'm not trying to say you did something wrong. I'm just saying maybe there is something else to blame here.
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Old 07-27-2005, 09:28 AM
PeteLM PeteLM is offline
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I'm always amazed at people saying how 'easy' the FreeBSD installer is, when the reality for most potential users is quite the opposite. I am very familiar with Slackware's installer so very FreeBSD, yet that is where the similarity ends. All my attempts trying to install NetBSD, FreeBSD, FreeSBie and PC-BSD 7.8 (beta) failed. My only success is Mac OS X:

FreeBSD 5.2.3 installed but generated Kernel Panic on first boot.
NetBSD only installed a console system (no X/KDE/XFCE), so no desktop!
FreeSBie managed to install XFCE, but a buggy installation script set vga resolution to 640 x 480, with no sound.
FreeBSD 5.3 only installed a console system. No X/KDE despite selecting KDE packages. 'Startx' produced borderless gui windows meaning that X was not configured. Section 5.3 of the User Manual was confusing when describing config files for Xorg. The installer should have configured Xorg and KDE, not the first time BSD user.
PC-BSD hung at 'Starting the BTX'. but this is the Beta, so I'll use 0.75 next time.

The installer is the first point of contact the user has with any software. Any installer failings will reduce user confidence in the quality of code, and merely create more 'shelfware' or coffee mats. One more potential contributor/sponsor to the BSD project lost! Not a great advert for an easy 'installer', especially considering the heritage and large team of developers that have supported BSD for a quarter of a century. Perhaps other priorities have prevent the team from creating an installer that actually installs the OS, apps, configures Xorg, KDE/GNOME/etc, and boots into that GUI.

Other Common NetBSD/FreeBSD/FreeSBie Installer Faults:
BSD changes the geometry of the hard disk, requiring several attempts at reformating before any other OS can be installed. NetBSD was the worst offender, with the hard drive locked in a loop for about 40 minutes when trying to reformat the disk for Windows.
BSD Boot Loader lists my Windows 2000 Pro drive as 'F1 ??'.

I have heard BSDers explain why BSD source code is more stable, tighter and more secure than Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. Well at least Windows, Mac OS and most Linux distros easily install GUIs without first having to become a BSD guru/Unix Administrator and perform many tedious post installation configuration tasks that should have been done by the installer in the first place.

I won't give up on FreeBSD, because of the potential of PC_BSD and FreeSBie offshoots to eliminatie the Installation hurdle that has prevented far too many average PC users from using FreeBSD as a viable desktop. PCBSD may be an embryonic project, but I can see the potential to attract many average PC users to the BSD fold.
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