[Freedombox-discuss] x86 Boxes and Debian Pure Blends

Jonas Smedegaard dr at jones.dk
Wed May 1 14:21:10 UTC 2013

Quoting Sean Alexandre (2013-05-01 14:52:14)
> I watched the FOSDEM '13 "FreedomBox 1.0" talk Eben and Bdale gave 
> earlier this year. They mentioned x86 boxes as a target platform, 
> versus just the DreamPlug.

Correct.  DreamPlug was never intended as the only platform, only the 
initial one.  This was emphasized at the recent talks at FOSDEM.

> I'd like to install the latest FreedomBox on a small x86 box I've got. 
> What's the best way to get started with this? I realize this may not 
> be supported right now, and would be interested in any pointers on how 
> to help.


You can...:

 * try install one of the snapshot images produced from time to time.

 * get the script used to produce those snapshot images and try create 
images yourself, adapting anything you discover being specific to some 
hardware not yours.

 * install a minimal Debian system, and try extend it to contain same as 
the images - to familiarize yourself with what is missing for it to 
become a Debian Pure Blend.

 * if familiar with some structured sysadmin tool like FAI, Puppet or 
CFengine, try re-express the current scripting using your preferred 
structure, to help expose (and classify?) what the scripting does.

 * if familiar with Debian packaging (or are interested in learning 
that), try look at the parts not yet packaged.


All of above are specifically about the "install and configure" part of 

Besides that you can...

 * help think about and look more concretely at user interface, both 
from design angles of it, how it is or can be technically implemented 
(favoring existing Debian structures like debconf and respecting logics 
like Debian "conffiles"), and documenting both ideas and materialised 

 * promote FreedomBox, and encourage active participation.

 * check the wiki pages that all relevant areas, issues, interesting 
tools etc. are mentioned, and drop eventual obsolete/irrelevant parts.

 * all the things I forgot to mention...

> I have a related question. I've read FreedomBox will ideally be a 
> "Debian Pure Blend". What would that look like, as far as doing an 
> install and configuring a box? (How would the install work? I'm 
> guessing it would install a set of Debian packages. Then there would 
> be some config scripts (puppet?) that would configure everything??)

A Debian Pure Blend is installed simply using official Debian packages.

If there is any step beyond that, it is (at most) a Debian Blend.

More info at https://wiki.debian.org/DebianPureBlends (recently updated 
to more clearly clarify above differences).


 - Jonas

 * Jonas Smedegaard - idealist & Internet-arkitekt
 * Tlf.: +45 40843136  Website: http://dr.jones.dk/

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