Choose a template
Tuesday, December 16. 2008
Posted by Neil Williams in Emdebian
Defined tags for this entry: Emdebian
Related entries by tags:
I'm pleased to make Emdebian Grip unstable available - a smaller, binary-compatible, Debian without manpages, without unwanted translation files (uses Emdebian TDebs) and without package documentation. The current packages will be migrated into Emdebian Grip testing in due course and then be released alongside Lenny.
Emdebian now has two flavours with Grip taking the intermediate position in terms of size whilst retaining full compatibility with Debian. Grip "cherry-picks" packages from Debian but retains the unchanged Debian sources - the main binary and library packages will exist but -dev, -doc and -dbg packages may well be missing, as well as some of the more unusual OR dependencies).
I've just converted my Acer Aspire1 (i386) - running XFCE - from Debian Lenny to Emdebian Grip:
607 upgraded, 1 newly installed, 2 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 184MB of archives.
After this operation, 278MB disk space will be freed.
Yes, update 600 packages and have nearly 300Mb more free space - that's a 400Kb space saving per package, on average. Gaining 90Mb more free space than the total size of the download is nice too. Comparisons are after using 'sudo apt-get clean' to remove downloaded archives:
/dev/sda1 7.1G 1.2G 5.6G 17% /
Emdebian Grip (unstable)
/dev/sda1 7.1G 919M 5.8G 14% /
I make that about 25% smaller and not all packages installed on the machine have been "gripped" - (about 100 remain, many of which I should probably remove anyway).
Method: See http://www.emdebian.org/grip/index.html.
Add the Grip source to /etc/apt/sources.list.d/
deb http://buildd.emdebian.org/grip/ unstable main
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install grip-config
This is a very important stage - Emdebian Grip is still in development and with the Lenny freeze, a few wrappers and helpers are needed to allow smooth migrations between Debian and Emdebian - grip-config is Architecture:all and contains the relevant scripts. (grip-config is Priority: required so debootstrap picks it up by default - this also means that grip-config cannot be part of Debian.) grip-config also includes the same key as the emdebian-archive-keyring package used by all Emdebian repositories.
Only after grip-config is installed should you use:
$ sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
Note that this is a complete replacement, including libc6, apt, coreutils, dpkg and (on i386) the stock kernel. As such, it can take a while to complete the installation once the download is complete. (As ever, if the kernel is updated, ensure you reboot before you next suspend to disk - even the minimal "gripping" changes to the kernel package may confuse grub when deciding whether to use the suspended image.)
A few packages are currently behind Debian Sid (notably ncurses) and I'm working on the scripts to enable full update automation.
One other problem is that /usr/share/locale/locale.alias has also disappeared which compromises localisation support right now but that's fairly easy to fix. (langupdate is also missing so there is no effective localisation support right now - I need to cross-build langupdate for the grip architectures.)
Note that this test install adds the Emdebian Grip repository to the existing Debian sources and relies on the em[0-9] version suffix to implement the upgrade - packages that are behind Debian get left at the Debian versions, you can also use normal pinning.
$ apt-cache policy
500 http://buildd.emdebian.org unstable/main Packages
500 http://ftp.uk.debian.org sid/main Packages
I've done some testing with debootstrap and a chroot works too - it should be possible to ally these packages with the normal Debian installer because there is no point "gripping" udebs that are already v.small and the packages that actually get installed are dictated by your choice of mirror. debian-live should be gaining support for Emdebian Grip in due course.
If someone fancies trying a test installation by choosing http://buildd.emdebian.org/grip as their mirror in d-i, let me know.
(Installing Grip is likely to result in further size gains as the Grip repository data does not support Recommends, so you don't have to try and get d-i to not use recommended packages).
Emdebian Grip (unstable) is now available for 7 architectures:
i386, amd64, arm, armel, mips, mipsel and powerpc.
(amd64 is only supported for debugging purposes, most of my development machines are amd64.)
Please report any and all bugs to the buildd.emdebian.org pseudo-package in the Debian BTS.
If you want more packages added, set up a Debian machine or chroot with all the packages you need (and only the ones you need) and send the
complete output of 'dpkg --get-selections' to the debian-embedded mailing list. Alternatively, file RFP bugs against buildd.emdebian.org at wishlist severity.
To see the current list of packages, use the search support
coreutils, perl, python, apt, dpkg, grip-config, XFCE, debhelper, make, devscripts, sylpheed, iceweasel, drivel, xchat-gnome, gpe-tetris,
totem-gstreamer, liferea, thunar, evince, seahorse, gthumb, libsqlite3, pilot-link, python-gnome2, lua, tcl, gcc-4.3, binutils, libmysqlclient15off.
Currently, very few -dev packages exist in Grip. I'll make the emdebian-grip package available on Grip itself in due course so that new and bespoke packages can also be "gripped".
I'm migrating the current packages to Emdebian Grip testing soon and I'll be making a release of Emdebian Grip 1.0 (based on Debian 5.0 "Lenny") as well as Emdebian Crush 1.0 (based on Debian 5.0 "Lenny"), alongside the main Lenny release.
Finally, note that Grip is binary compatible with Debian - indeed, the binaries themselves are untouched - but bugs that appear in Emdebian Grip must only be filed against the buildd.emdebian.org pseudo-package. Right now, reportbug is not part of Emdebian Grip because I need a way of telling reportbug to only use the pseudo-package.
The main usability improvements will come in the development of Emdebian 2.0 (based on Debian 6.0 "Squeeze") - please consider Emdebian 1.0 as a "developer release", think back to what things were like with Slackware 1.0 or Debian buzz, rex or bo.
P.S. there is no concept of a release-critical bug in Emdebian Grip (at least, not yet) - the 1.0 release will happen as soon as Grip testing is in sync with the released Lenny (no matter what). Please do not file any bugs against buildd.emdebian.org with higher severity than important, it will just annoy people trying to fix RC bugs in Lenny.
If you are a maintainer in Debian and you inadvertently receive a bug report listed as 'found' in a version that ends in em[0-9], please reassign to buildd.emdebian.org, at severity no higher than important. Thanks.
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)