Bug 446681 - RFE Existing OS's, Features and improvements..
Summary: RFE Existing OS's, Features and improvements..
Alias: None
Product: Fedora
Classification: Fedora
Component: anaconda
Version: rawhide
Hardware: All
OS: Linux
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Anaconda Maintenance Team
QA Contact: Fedora Extras Quality Assurance
Depends On:
TreeView+ depends on / blocked
Reported: 2008-05-15 16:49 UTC by Jóhann B. Guðmundsson
Modified: 2009-07-09 20:35 UTC (History)
0 users

Fixed In Version:
Doc Type: Enhancement
Doc Text:
Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2009-07-09 20:35:53 UTC

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Description Jóhann B. Guðmundsson 2008-05-15 16:49:59 UTC
Description of problem:

Anaconda has been criticize for lack of multi boot 
support in the past and now recently here.


This is yet another RFE from me to coming up with suggestion
to what needs fixing and improvements in anaconda to restore it's
rightful place as the leader of installers in the realm of opensource... 

Implementing #445701 would restore a great deal of the negative 
feedback anconda has had about it's non userfriendly novice user usability.
While keeping intact it's great flexibility for it's advanced/expert users
and let other installer chase anaconda for a change..

( If #445701 would be implemented announce it to the public from the day
it was decided, we have had to many incidents when innovation has taken 
place in the fedoraproject while other unnamed distro take credit for it
and fedora looks like it's catching up to that unnamed distro... 
PR. 101 First to announce, gets all the credit ) 

Comment suggestion criticism all welcome :)

The stripped down task that anaconda is facing...

When designing an installer for OS, the design (team) is faced with 
2 options regarding the boot loader for the OS.
( Stripped down only 2 :) )

A) Install the boot loader on mbr and make it's boot loader the primary boot 
   loader for the OS and all other OS's that reside on the disk(s). 
   (Takeover.. Anaconda's default )

B) Make the necessary changes to the already existing boot loader that resides
   on the disk(s), to load the OS being installed. ( Coexistent )

For both option A and B the need of the OS installer "intellect" is exactly the

Encase A the OS installer needs to be able to know and detect other OS's that
reside on the same disk(s) and make the necessary changes for those OS's to it's
boot loader for them, to continue "loading".

Encase B the OS installer needs to be able to know and detect other OS's that
reside on the same disk(s) and make the necessary changes for it's self and or
it's boot loader in the other OS's boot loader to be able 
to "load" the OS that's being installed.

For anaconda to take a lead of other OS installers it needs to support both, yes

Encase a user wants to use grub as his default boot loader it needs to support A.

Encase a user wants to use his already existing for well known example NTLDR
boot loader it needs to support B.

The above is what a great installer has to be able to do to support multi boot.

Take a decision which other os's are going to be "supported"

For example windows, linux, freebsd and it's halfbreed brother Apple OS X 

When A user chooses to install on grub on his mbr anaconda needs to be able to
add the other os entry that resides on his disk(s) in grub. 
( chainload entry for the other os's, especially if it chosen/highlighted by
default as it is done now )

It also needs to offer the user the choose to keep on using the existing 
boot loader, because in 80% cases the user that wants to keep his existing 
os and install another os beside it, would like to continue to use his previous
boot loader.

And the best place to implement this is in the selection box for 
install grub on mbr.

Comment 1 Chris Lumens 2009-07-09 20:35:53 UTC
If there are specific problems with the multiboot support of writing out the grub config, we can definitely address those.  I'm sure we've got some bugs outstanding right now.  Please feel free to file others if you don't find reports describing your specific bug.

However, we are not about to work on writing out bootloader configs for all possible other OS bootloaders, or really any besides the ones we absolutely have to support (grub, yaboot, etc.).  This is simply too much work for too small a set of people, and ends up with us chasing down problems in how other bootloaders work and always playing catch up when they change how things work.  It's simply not worth it.

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