The Words of the Sledge
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Friends Matthew Garrett
Ready for Jessie! (aka bits from the debian-cd team)
I'm happy with the progress we've made for debian-installer and
related packages for the Jessie release. We're going to end up with a
release that's better in a number of ways than what we've had
1. Big EFI enhancements
I've already blogged a lot about the stuff I've worked on here, so
I'll just summarise for now some of the improvements we've got over
- A fix for systems that (badly) dual-boot in EFI and BIOS mode such
that after installing Debian you wouldn't get a sensible choice of
which OS to boot
- A workaround for broken EFI implementations: an option to install
the grub-efi bootloader to the removable media path in case the system
firmware does not load grub-efi from the correctly registered boot
- Addition of 32-bit EFI to our i386 installation images, to support
both some older systems and some brand new systems that need it. This
has unfortunately stopped those i386 images from working on some of
the oldest Intel-based Apple Mac machines, so we've added an extra
Mac-only flavour of i386 netinst without EFI in case people need it.
- Significantly better support for Intel-based Apple Macs in
general, to the point that installing Debian on lots of these machines
should now be much easier and doesn't depend on extra third-party
software such as rEFIt or rEFInd. I've massively updated the Debian
with more details for specific models of Mac Mini. I'm hoping to
provide similarly updated information for Mac laptops too - see below!
Massive thanks to the lovely folks
at Mythic Beasts for
providing me with a range of machines to test with here!
- Support for mixed-mode EFI systems like the Intel Bay Trail: a
64-bit platform crippled with a 32-bit EFI firmware. I believe Jessie
will be the first release of a Linux distribution to support these
2. Openstack images
In collaboration with Thomas Goirand, we now have amd64 Openstack
Jessie image builds being produced every week, and there will be an
official image made to go with the Jessie release
too. See http://cdimage.debian.org/cdimage/openstack/testing/
for the current image.
3. Debian-live images
As of a few weeks ago, we've also added started doing weekly builds
of live Debian images for amd64 and i386, using software and
configuration from the Live Systems
Project. See http://cdimage.debian.org/cdimage/weekly-live-builds/
for the current weekly images. These will be produced in sync with the
Jessie release too.
4. New architectures
We've added installation media for the two new architectures added
I'm particularly proud of the arm64 images. With help from Ian
Campbell, Leif Lindholm and Thomas Schmitt I've managed to make
EFI-compatible CD images in an
isohybrid design that
means they should also work when copied directly to a USB
stick. Hopefully this will help this new platform to become just as
easy to install as any x86 PC is today.
Hopefully post-Jessie we'll even be able to start providing live
images and openstack images for more architectures too.
More help needed yet!
First of all, we're planning to release Jessie as Debian 8 this
coming Saturday (25th April). Help with testing the installation and
live images as they're produced would be lovely - please join us on
the #debian-cd channel on irc.debian.org and we'll co-ordinate
Secondly, there's an almost endless variety of machines out
there. I've updated information about how Debian installation works on
some of the more awkward
Mac Mini machines,
but we don't yet cover all the bases even there. It would be great to
update the information about other machines such as
the Macbook range as
well - currently a lot of these pages are well out of date and won't
be helpful for new users. Please test on machines if you have them,
and help improve Debian's documentation here.
Re: Ready for Jessie! (aka bits from the debian-cd team)
wrote on Thu, 23 Apr 2015 03:24
Just doing installs on a Zotac barebones box with Realtek ethernet 8169 and Intel iwlwifi, Radeon graphics - requires firmware for all three of these to work optimally. Expert install works well using Jessie RC3 - prompts for missing firmware, then works on wired connection without realtek firmware. On first boot, screen messages from systemd suggest firmware-linux-nonfree for Radeon and loads libdrm1-radeon once that's in place.
Same hardware won't do an automated install - it waits on missing realtek firmware, despite having loaded an Ethernet driver which works at that point :(
Suggest a caveat in the release notes: if automated install doesn't work for any particular machine, do expert install first/instead.