[RFC] Rewriting sade(8)

Randi Harper randi at freebsd.org
Thu Apr 8 20:16:57 UTC 2010

On Thu, Apr 8, 2010 at 11:15 AM, Garrett Cooper <yanefbsd at gmail.com> wrote:

> 2. install.cfg is just a hacky / non-style(9) compliant way of
> specifying how to do an install. If you could separate out sysinstall
> into separate utilities and have each of the pieces execute as shell
> commands with predefined variables at install, you'll be lightyears
> ahead of where sysinstall is today.

What does style(9) have to do with install.cfg? From the header in the
man page, style(9) is a "kernel source file style guide". install.cfg
is a configuration file. It is not source code. install.cfg isn't as
good as it could be, admittedly. Like much of sysinstall, it needs
some work, but I wouldn't call it "hacky". It's readable and fairly
easy to understand.

What you're talking about doing is rewriting all of sysinstall. How
many people have said at some point "I'm going to rewrite sysinstall"
or "I'm going to write a replacement for sysinstall"? How many of
those people were successful? We're working on a plan and tackling one
problem at a time, keeping goals manageable. As a result, sysinstall
is getting more TLC now than it has in a very long time.

> 3. sysinstall(8) does a lot of crud that it shouldn't do for all
> systems. Powerusers won't use sysinstall because does too much crap;
> all of the items that sysinstall does behind the scenes to get a
> working system should be properly documented in a doc article.

I consider myself a poweruser, and I've stuck to using sysinstall. I
just select 'custom'. I know a lot of other powerusers - people that
have been sysadmins for a very long time - that also use sysinstall.
Please don't presume to speak for sysadmins everywhere.

I'm not sure what "crud" you're talking about in specific. There's
some things I'd like to see go away (some of the post-install
configuration bits, how the ports tree is installed). There will be an
epic discussion soon of where we'd all like to see sysinstall go
("away" is not the answer I'm looking for :D), but this is going off
topic of the original thread.

There's a lot of work being done to sysinstall right now by a number
of people. I don't want to further complicate things by pushing what
you're suggesting into the mix. What we're discussing at the moment is
sade/sysinstall specific and affects what happens in the immediate
future, not a laundry list of "this is why sysinstall sucks". File a
PR. Submit patches.

-- randi

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