The Caffeinated Penguin

musings of a crackpot hacker

By the way, Debian – after 5 years, your installer still sucks

Posted By on January 17, 2008

Way back in the day, I tried to install Debian 3.0 (Sarge) and ended up just getting pissed off at the installer and casting it aside.

Now, it's 2008, and I'm trying to install 4.0 (Etch). OOh! There's an ecrypted LVM setup out of the box. I select the default partitioning thing, let it spend an hour and a half erasing the disk, and then go to modify the partition table it created… and then manage to crash the installer… Okay, well, I'll be more gentle next time. So, I go back through.. and it still wants to spend an hour and a half formatting the drive.. WTF? Restart.. try and find a way to turn it off.. none that I can find. Restart… expert mode.. is it in there? Nope.

That's it, patience exceeded.

Of course, why am I trying to install Etch? Because Ubuntu has been headed downhill since 6.06, and more and more things get broken on my laptop. Wireless was rock solid stable in 6.06, now it barely works, and I have to reboot every week or so because NetworkManager gobbles up all your CPU after about a week. Oh, and openoffice won't print my stuff anymore… Oh, and NFS STILL DOESN'T RELIABLY MOUNT THINGS AT BOOT. But we have Upstart, so that makes it all good, right?

So, to review: (1) Ubuntu – they keep breaking stuff. (2) Debian – installer sucks.

I think I'm going to give Fedora 8 a whirl.. I tried it about a month ago, and was annoyed about lack of packages. But, I've been talking with , and it seems like the packages they have actually working might be worth the fact that I'd have to compile Mame from scratch. So, I figure I'll install it again, poke it, and see what leaks out.

Oh, and why is every major distribution still compiled for i386? Come on folks.. The 80's called, they want their CPU back. Go i586, at least.


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