F19 DVD over size - what to drop?

Adam Williamson awilliam at redhat.com
Thu May 2 19:00:32 UTC 2013

On Thu, 2013-05-02 at 10:08 -0600, Chris Murphy wrote:
> On May 2, 2013, at 6:40 AM, Bruno Wolff III <bruno at wolff.to> wrote:
> > 
> > This is pretty much what happened with CD images. Eventually this will change, but it isn't clear to me that this is the right time to make that change.
> CentOS 6 uses two DVD images. Apple, before dropping DVD's with new computers, went with two DVD's for a period, even though they had hardware that supported DVD/DL. There's precedent. If it's going to cause aneurisms figuring out what to drop, just use two images.

It doesn't seem to be causing any aneurysms. There've been lots of
suggestions for drops and no "NOOOOOO DON'T DROP MY PRECIOUS THINGS!"
mails. It seems like a solve-able problem.

FWIW I agree with the general trend of discussion so far: let's find
things to drop that don't really need to be on the DVD so we can keep
MATE and Cinnamon. You can install those from live images or from repos
of course, just like anything else, but they are things it makes a deal
of sense to provide for offline users - probably more so than many of
the candidates for removal so far - and there is a substantial PR
benefit to including them. Most press don't understand the ins and outs
of DVDs vs. live images vs. repositories vs. net installs and so on. I
recall only one F18 review that accurately nailed the status of Cinnamon
and MATE in F18 - in the repositories, available from net install, but
no live image and not on the DVDs. Aside from that lone hero, the
reviewers who actually bothered to download and install Fedora usually
said 'you can't install Cinnamon or MATE at install time' (because they
used the DVD and didn't know how network installs work). The 'reviewers'
who just went off the release notes said "Cinnamon and MATE are included
in Fedora 18!" and then readers who didn't understand the subtleties
downloaded the DVD, saw it wasn't there, and bashed us, the reviewers or

So, yeah - whatever the theoreticals, there is a practical benefit to
having Cinnamon and MATE on the DVD, and I agree with the general thrust
of 'removing things whose users we can reasonably expect to usually have
a network connection', as the *key* use case of the DVD (the case where
something's presence on the DVD is a necessity rather than a
convenience) is offline users.

To address a couple of other points that have come up: the world
certainly hasn't reached the point where we can target DL DVDs or huge
USB sticks and forget about the SL DVD target, no. We still have
significant usage of the DVD images, ambassadors can confirm this. You
can write Fedora to USB sticks without destroying their existing
contents; livecd-iso-to-disk and liveusb-creator can both do this. And
the official size target for the DVD truly is the size of a writeable
single-layer / single-side DVD; there is a benefit to keeping it under
4GB if possible (it's the maximum file size on a FAT32 partition, so
some Windows users cannot download larger images), but we don't hold
ourselves to it as a hard limit.
Adam Williamson
Fedora QA Community Monkey
IRC: adamw | Twitter: AdamW_Fedora | identi.ca: adamwfedora

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