[Grml] grml-live, fai and package retreiving

Michael Prokop mika at grml.org
Sat Nov 10 21:04:29 CET 2007

* T o n g <mlist4suntong at yahoo.com> [20071110 18:49]:

> I'm new to grml-live & fai. I don't understand why fai needs its own
> sources.list file. Since it will be really rarely for people to choose
> different mirrors from there preferred ones. Can we configure one less file
> (/etc/grml/fai/apt/sources.list), telling grml-live to use the official
> /etc/apt/sources.list by default instead?

No, because your chroot has absolutely nothing to do with your
harddisc installation. :) You can build a Debian/stable based system
on your Debian/unstable system and vice versa. And you can use a
local mirror (check out approx/apt-cacher/... setup as described in
the docs at http://grml.org/grml-live/) this way without modifying
anything on your hd installation. It's not a bug, it's a feature! :)

> ,-----
> | To avoid downloading the base system again and again check out FAI's NFSROOT 
> `-----

> This is another point that I don't understand the fai's philosophy. The
> "normal" Debian will cache the downloaded packages. Removing and installing
> a package again and again won't cause the very package to be downloaded
> again and again. Why fai behaves this way? Are the package downloaded by fai
> cached at the official place?

What grml-live/FAI does as first step is setting up a minimal, basic
chroot system using debootstrap. This chroot system is what I
provide as http://daily.grml.org/base.tgz (for I386) /
http://daily.grml.org/base64.tgz (for AMD64) - it's usually always
the same chroot you are using as a base. So when you have an
autobuild system like the one I'm running for http://daily.grml.org/
it would be stupid to download and install the same Debian packages
for the base system via debootstrap again and again. That's why you
have the option to use this base.tgz.

Using /etc/grml/fai/config/basefiles/AMD64.tar.gz vs.
/etc/grml/fai/config/basefiles/I386.tar.gz (being the base.tgz files
you will notice as "FAI's NFSROOT" in the docs) even gives us the
flexibility to provide the base chroot system depending of the
architecture/class we want to use/build for. If you want to you can
customize the base system as well of course, thanks to the lovely
design and features of FAI. :)

> Thanks, and for the excellent grml-live BTW.

Great you like it. :)

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