Bug#900918: debian-installer: Please make the generated images reproducible

Cyril Brulebois kibi at debian.org
Fri Jan 18 23:30:17 GMT 2019

Hello Chris,

First off: Thanks a lot for your work, and for your patience.

Chris Lamb <lamby at debian.org> (2019-01-12):
> I would dearly love to have reproducible installer images for buster
> and indeed this would be a good thing to provide and offer, let alone
> announce in the release notes, etc.
> Now that mtools has been sorted out, could this bug & corresponding
> merge request get a closer look? Thanks in advance.

There's a new alpha coming up and I've just spent some time cleaning up
things in debian-installer.git (debhelper compat, standards-version,
etc.) right after the upload; I've almost merged your patch series as
is, but I'd like to raise a few points first. I'm fine with amending the
patches myself, just wanted to check with you first…

 * 0c19a29645a6a3136f3a51da5d5cf1cfcec5fdfb mentions file system
   ordering only, but that's just the sort part AFAIUI; you're also
   resetting some timestamps with the find | xargs touch loop aren't
   you? I'd be happy to see this documented in the commit message as
   [ basically the clamp_mtimes function in build/Makefile in later
     commits. ]

 * 71391967763708055a65ed68999db8f4ea6fc6e6 sets “deb00001” as the FAT
   volume ID; have you checked with people like debian-cd@ whether
   another constant might make more sense? (cc-edd)
   [ also: “determinstic” in commit message. ]
   [ post-scriptum: ok, now I see we already had that in place
     elsewhere; keeping the cc anyway. ]

 * 7c533fa721c3ae89ca81d1336b5928a80ed0d531 thanks for the clarity, much
   [ also: “becuase” in commit message. ]

 * c35b8688696b1b4563a45d0feeabc3a0c0f2eccb “determinstic” in commit

 * ea1a896181daa3b82c5a62ae31839b457a0dbe0b modifies BUILD_DATE, adding
   a few characters (“:SS”); that ends up in various help screens
   (hopefully not an issue) but also on some files: version.info,
   disk.lbl, etc.

   Also, coming to think about BUILD_DATE, it's defined with ?= in
   build/config/common but we also set it from debian/rules… I guess
   I'll have to check what happens.

 * f181b4fe90b9030f515c7e6129239b96131b3926 oh more en_GB, yay.

Cyril Brulebois (kibi at debian.org)            <https://debamax.com/>
D-I release manager -- Release team member -- Freelance Consultant
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