[Grml-devel] About the new grml direction

Ulrich Dangel mru at grml.org
Tue Dec 27 19:43:06 CET 2011

* Alexander Wirt wrote [27.12.11 16:45]:
> For me grml was always an all purpose live cd for text users and zsh addicts.
> I always knew I could just load a grml a I would have a more or less complete working
> environment afterwards. 

The problem is we don't have the manpower to do such a release. It was
always cumbersome and stressfull for the persons involved in the

And the complete work environment was always a problem. Several times
questions like these came up:

Q: Does package X make sense on a Live-CD? 
A: No but people may using Grml as a Dekstop system/work environment… 

For me personally it was always unclear what the purpose of Grml was,
what's its vision, what belongs on the CD, what does not. And i think
with this release it became clear and obvious.

> On the other hand I was able to just use grml-small
> if I needed a live cd just for booting and chrooting into the usual
> environment (i.e. for restoring the bootloader) or use -small as a base for
> my own customisations.
Releasing all different kind of flavours like
grml-{full,medium,small}{64,32} resulted in six isos, which all had to be
tested. And again there were typically not many people involved in
testing the releases.
It was neither fun nor interesting nor rewarding.  It was just a lot of
work for nothing really important. And this is not something new.

And what is the reason for using grml-small instead of the new
grml-full? USB sticks typically have more then 350mb, if you want to use
the ISO image on /boot in combination with grml-rescueboot you can mount
a LVM LV over /boot/grml and use that.

That being said, i think that we maybe should/can reintroducde
grml-small. Removing packages from a package list should result in less
problems than adding new ones. But first we must get rid of grml-small
specific hacks (IMHO).

> Unfortunatly these assumptions aren't valid anymore. IMHO it is not a good
> idea to focus on rescue environments. GRML was known for two things: the
> great collection of well prepared text tools and their release names. 

If you look around the internet about discussions for rescue
systems, network stuff or other Live-CDs, Grml was never recommended as
the first Distribution. Typically only one persons in the threads
writing Oh but i like Grml. Thats it. And i personally think it is
because Grml was everything and nothing. No area it was especially good
at but tried to please everyone.

> I don't think focussing on release names as the only unique feature is
> a good idea.  There are rescue systems like ten a penny.
That's the reason I wrote

And it is not only rescue, it is also installation. Thats for example
the reason we added rinse to the packagel ist.

> Also wasting 350 mb of space on a cd is a (imho) stupid thing.
Wasting 4 GB on a DVD is also a stupid thing… I don't think the free
space left on a device should be considered an argument at all. Only if
it fits on a specific medium.

> I want my old grml-small and -full back. And as it seems I am not alone.

grml-full is the flavour name for the current release. grml-xl is atm
the old package list.

If someone steps up regarding grml-xl sure. But the people involved in
the release don't have the manpower to do it. And JFTR it does not only
involve taking care of the package list but also checking the dailies,
checking for dependency problems, testing RCs etc.

Long story short, the persons involved in the release process don't have
the manpower or interest in grml-xl. If you want to see changes please
start contributing&testing what works and actually work on making
grml-xl releases a reality.


P.S: For a more personal view on the release process have a look at
the blog entry of ch http://zeha.at/blog/2011/12/grml-pissed-off.html

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