Linked by David Adams on Sun 11th Dec 2011 01:37 UTC, submitted by rhyder
Linux It's starting to look like the end of an era for Ubuntu users as Canonical mull the creation of an ISO that won't fit onto a CDR. The question is, does it matter? Canonical owes at least part of its success with Ubuntu Linux to the unique way that it has been distributed. From the start it has been available as a downloadable ISO image and a free CD, posted at no cost to the user. This was great news for people who wanted to install Linux but did not have the luxury of a decent Internet connection. In a sense, installing via a CDR image has always been like a kind of cache, in that you're moving part of the content that you need onto permanent storage rather than pulling it through the network connection
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Stick with CDR limitations ...
by MacTO on Sun 11th Dec 2011 17:04 UTC
MacTO
Member since:
2006-09-21

Three reasons:

The CDR places a clear limit on the size of the OS. As soon as you start placing arbitrary limits on the size, it become far to easy to say, "but it's only a few megabytes over." That leads down a path of bloat.

Bandwidth download times are another good reason to limit the size. Not only does bandwidth cost them and their mirrors money, but bandwidth and download times cost the end user money and time.

Finally, since Ubuntu is a live CD where anything on the live CD gets installed to the hard disk. While having some of the initial decisions made for the user is nice, having all of the decisions made for them is a wee bit authoritarian.

Reply Score: 5

ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Three reasons:

The CDR places a clear limit on the size of the OS. As soon as you start placing arbitrary limits on the size, it become far to easy to say, "but it's only a few megabytes over." That leads down a path of bloat.


Linux bloat is nothing new. The most Linux distro maintainers steer towards a works-for-most-people concept, the more bloat you get. Ironically, they're doing the exact same thing they cry about Microsoft doing.

At any rate, end-user usability is most important -- not filesize.

Bandwidth download times are another good reason to limit the size. Not only does bandwidth cost them and their mirrors money, but bandwidth and download times cost the end user money and time.

That may be a problem some a small handful of users but certainly not for the majority. If the expensive of downloading for those people is too great, they should elect to have it mailed to them.

Finally, since Ubuntu is a live CD where anything on the live CD gets installed to the hard disk. While having some of the initial decisions made for the user is nice, having all of the decisions made for them is a wee bit authoritarian.

That's an over-exaggeration imo. Distros that install everything by default are simply trying to provide the best user experience by giving him a good amount of software/drivers/etc. to work with. That is not authoritarian.

Reply Parent Score: 1

zima Member since:
2005-07-06

most Linux distro maintainers steer towards a works-for-most-people concept, the more bloat you get. Ironically, they're doing the exact same thing they cry about Microsoft doing

Not at all the same thing, software on Linux distros is virtually exclusively from 3rd parties (quite unlike what MS does)

Reply Parent Score: 2

Kivada Member since:
2010-07-07

The decision has already been made by the MESA driver devs to drop pretty much all legacy GPU support for anything from before the era of DVD player drives being standard equipment on bargain basement machines, anything past 7.11 is losing support for at least:

i810: Early Intel 8xx series IGPs
Mach64: ATI Mach GPUs
r128: ATI Rage 128 GPUs like the Rage Fury, XPERT 99, and XPERT 128
MGA: Matrox GPUs
Savage: S3 Savage GPUs
SiS: Crusty SiS GPUs
Tdfx: 3dfx Voodoo graphics cards
Unichrome: VIA IGPs

Yes, there'd be some overlap here with machines with DVD players that had Pentium4's with the i8 series IGPs but pretty much everything else was older then that.

As for obtaining the discs, tell Canonical to restart ShipIt http://www.ubuntu.com/shipit or at least link up to all the shops where you can order the discs like the Debian project does http://www.debian.org/CD/vendors/ take a look, you can get the full 6 DVD version of Debian 6.0.3 for $10 US mailed to you.

So no, I say bring the .iso size up to 4Gb, merge the subversions into the one disc that can either be burned onto a 4.4Gb DVD or loaded off a 4Gb USB flash.

Reply Parent Score: 1

zima Member since:
2005-07-06

That's not an issue at all, MESA just does 3D you know... and NVM 3D being slow on those GFX chips - too slow for desktop compositing and such (yes, I did try, experienced it on some) - it was also unmaintained for a long time and very buggy even in such basic stuff like ...desktop compositing (likewise)

Similar with "beyond overlay / xvideo" acceleration (it was often more trouble than it's worth; most of those cards didn't support any serious levels of video decoding in the first place). Plus, anything in standard definition will be nice with software decoder on any reasonable CPU, P2 & up (PII 266 - dual, but that doesn't matter too much with video playback - software decoders greatly improved over the last decade); HD anything would be too slow anyway.

2D works fine, Xubuntu or Lubuntu (recommended anyway, with machines which would have one of those cards) works.

If some (say, i8xx) have driver maintainance problems beyond MESA, that's a separate problem of theirs.

(also, there are probably much less of those machines than you think... for one, those are the times of "really bad caps" & something a decade old; the two machines with Matrox G400 and Voodoo3, that I keep around for some reason, are zombies / Frankensteins / display a "ship of Theseus" problem - they're scavenged from few PCs and it's hard to tell their age really)

Edited 2011-12-18 23:44 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2