[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: SEUL: Installation steps

jfm2@club-internet.fr wrote:

>    > 4)Add needed drivers
>    How does SEUL handle drivers? Suppose the user wants to use an
>    experimental driver, that we have not prepackaged. How would they go
>    about doing this?
> Not by recompiling.  All official Linux must be in the kernel or in
> modules.  People trying experimental things are not our public.  And
> they are good enough to be able to recompile the kernel without help.

I'm not talking about kernel hackers and weekend Radio Shack warriors.
I'm talking about people (like myself) who have a new Intel 10/100Mbps
ethernet card and need an experimental driver just to use it. I'm
talking about people (like myself) who need to add sixteen characters to
one specific line in the ne.c driver to make it autodetect their Linksys
PCI NE/2000 card. I'm talking about people who have hardware that
doesn't work with a stock Linux distribution, but could otherwise work

The number of people who fit that description is staggeringly large. Too
large to ignore. Linux doesn't sit on top of commercially-written device
drivers; it's based on contributed efforts and a lot of guesswork with
regard to hardware support.

>    One thought is that we might have a generic "kernel compiler" interface
>    program. It would let the user configure a kernel safely, then compile
>    it with some sort of GUI front-end and install it (a la make zlilo).
> No!!!  Modules is the way to go.
>    Another idea might be to have a totally generic compiler interface.
>    Instead of Makefiles/Imakefiles/autoconf, we could have a simple API
>    that allows developers to specify simplistic compile-time options. Many
>    portability problems come from not knowing the specific configuration of
>    a particular box; with SEUL, we could (in a limited sense) control that,
>    and at least keep track of it. This would be a rather ambitious
>    undertaking, but it's worth looking into. Compiling programs is a Linux
>    way of life; can we make that more understandable to end users?
> There are people who do not want lose time compiling kernels.  What
> they want is WORK with Linux.  Why spend so much effort on making a
> kernel compiling interface aimed to end users when it is so easy to
> provide a few lean kernels with modules for everything and write a
> simple program for configuring kerneld?

I guess I'm confused as to the purpose of this project. Are we trying to
slap a Win95 interface on Linux? "Same GUI, doesn't crash so much"? Or
are we trying to independently develop an end-user system for *Linux*?
If all we're trying to do is shoehorn Linux into a classic desktop OS,
then I misunderstood from the announcement. Sorry.

Because if this is *really* about coming up with a way to introduce
people to Linux without extraneous distractions, I think it could be
fruitful to start wondering what kind of things might make Linux easy,
rather than making Linux into Win95.

Michael J. Peck
Hewlett-Packard, Convex Division
Opinions expressed above are not necessarily those of my employer.
Simple End User Linux Mailing list
To be removed from this mailing list send a message to majordomo@txcc.net
with the line
unsubscribe seul-project
in the body of the letter.