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Re: SEUL: Observatons

jfm2@club-internet.fr wrote:
>    Micah Yoder wrote:
>    >
>    > jfm2@club-internet.fr wrote:
>    > >
>    > > I disagree. The fact is than the VGA server will run with *almost* any
>    > > card.  But not all.
>    > > There are PCs with NVidia Cards (correct me if I am wrong but that is
>    > > a modern card) that won't run with the VGA server.  They will run with
>    > > their specific server however.
>    > > And there are other cards where the VGA server will only support 320x200.
>    >
>    > [snip]
>    > >
>    > > Also 8 meg machines will have a hard time with an X based install.
>    >
>    > OK, points taken.  Curses it is!
>    We should be doing an X-based install.
>    X'll cover very nearly everything now.  You find VGA-capable machines in
>    the dumpster now.  Literally.
> Before XFree 3.3 the best seller Matrox Mystique was only capable of
> 320x200 with the VGA server.  It is difficult to do anything decent
> with that.  Also the process of configuring X is tricky and we should

If we don't have 640x480x16, we shouldn't even consider supporting it. 
In fact, I think 1024x768x256 and 800x600x256 are very realistic minimum
configs to consider.

We don't have to limit ourselves to the VGA server.

> not be forced to rely on it.  But perhaps that could be solved with a
> two phase config: in the install phase with ask the user the minimum
> ans install the SPECIFIC server (not VGA) with the 640x480 resolution
> and low refresh rates who is granted to not fry the monitor and we use
> that during install.


> Then when installation is complete we can make a
> complete config of X (the user has now Linux installed so it is not
> dependent on X working so he is less prone to lose his nerves and do
> stupid things or just abandon hope) and if it works we configure Linux
> for booting to XDM, if it does not work then Linux will boot in text
> mode.

Just do the X config first.  A CD-ROM has plenty of room for X servers.

>    You'd be amazed the number of users who won't take curses seriously.
>    Over the weekend, one of my housemates said "unix is just like dos,
>    right?"  He also talked about "just using telenet" in disparaging
>    tones.  (As tho unix is only capable of telnet sessions, because that's
>    all he can get from windows without installing more software)
> It is just for installation than we would use curses, my goal is than
> when rebooting the user will log to XDM.  I am not against an X
> install but I do not want we try to develop one until we have a curses
> install as a backup solution.

I think working on curses stuff is a waste of time.  It'll really form a
bad first impression.  At a minimum, we could grab widtools and slap
something together.  That's easier to do than curses programming anyway
(mind you, I'm good with curses, I just think it's kinda dead)

>    There are plenty of non-X-based installs around.  We don't need another.
> RedHat 2 used an X install.  They reverted to curses.  In part due to
> the difficulty of mantaining the X install along the curses based one
> they used for backup solution.  In part because at that time most
> people had 8 Megs machines who paginated for hours with the X install.

RH's in a different situation.  People might reasonably want to run RH
without X - so they shouldn't force people to Configure X.

8M is too low for a true end-user linux -because- X doesn't run well in
8M.  Also, people buying windows boxes are going for 32M or 64M now.  If
we set 16M as our lower bound, we're in -great- shape.

SEUL has no business trying to do anything without X (or other GUI, but
probably X - shades of apple).  It won't be considered "user friendly"
without a GUI - with decent performance.

> No.  If you try making a full blown X config with high resolutions and
> refresh rates chances are that something will not work so the user
> will not be able to install anything.  If you want an X config then:

It's going to happen sooner or later.  Don't put it off.  Graphics are
what make the environment, to most people.

> ask the user what brand is his card, what keyboard he is using and
> what mouse (or use mouseonfig to detect it) then install the specific
> server and start it at 640x480 with no hardware panning (it confuses
> beginners).

Mostly agreed.  Definitely no hardware panning.
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