proposing a new d-i disk preparation tool, "growlight"

Speaker: nick black

Language: English

Track: Systems administration, automation and orchestration

Type: Short talk (20 minutes)

About a decade back, I was running a Debian Derivative that–among other things–needed ZFS support in the installer. That snowballed into an entire TUI disk management tool, “growlight”. I’ve kept it up to date and added features over the ten intervening years, but it’s always retained its original purpose – a means to visually prepare physical and logical disks, verify coherent system setup, and then install to them.

That tool has since become part of the Debian archive. I’m interested in dusting off the debian-installer connective tissues and suggesting it as a new component for d-i. Is there any interest in such a thing? What environments might I be unaware of that would need support? What capabilities are most important? I believe growlight to offer a more attractive and powerful interface, but is conformance to the rest of the installer’s appearance important?

Ideally this talk would consist of some introductory remarks and design principles, a few quick demos of various install scenarios using virtual machines, and then a QA/RFC session. I’m looking for feedback as much as I am looking to demo. I think such a thing will be taken most seriously with a live demo, hence my desire to do so at DebConf.