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#1 2020-05-08 11:29:10

randomer
Member
Registered: 2019-10-24
Posts: 56  

If the Devuan project...

...is on a mission to be a sane Debian, a Debian with init freedom, then why the decision to include firmware in all the install and live images?

Why wouldn't you want to adopt Debians practice of making firmware completely optional? While labeling the firmware ISOs *unofficial* is super confusing, the seperation in and of itself makes perfect sense to me. Imo it would be an improvement to Debians approach to make ISOs with firmware the primary install/live mediums while still providing optional ISOs without firmware. Not having the option to download an ISO without firmware on the other hand feels like a downgrade from Debian.

Just my personal thoughts. Devuan is my distro of choice.

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#2 2020-05-08 11:40:38

rolfie
Member
Registered: 2017-11-25
Posts: 297  

Re: If the Devuan project...

I am absolutely happy that firmware is available on the install media. Its much easier to get the box to work, especially for the beginners, but also for the experienced users.

I need non-free firmware, non-free is enabled in all sources.lists on all my PCs. I am using AMD graphics, many of my mainboards have Realtek GBit network chips on board. That wouldn't work without non-free stuff.

rolfie

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#3 2020-05-08 12:00:57

randomer
Member
Registered: 2019-10-24
Posts: 56  

Re: If the Devuan project...

rolfie wrote:

I am absolutely happy that firmware is available on the install media. Its much easier to get the box to work, especially for the beginners, but also for the experienced users.

I need non-free firmware, non-free is enabled in all sources.lists on all my PCs. I am using AMD graphics, many of my mainboards have Realtek GBit network chips on board. That wouldn't work without non-free stuff.

rolfie

I did not suggest to only provide ISOs free of firmware. I suggested to provide additional ISOs without the firmware.

Last edited by randomer (2020-05-08 12:01:21)

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#4 2020-05-08 12:19:49

bimon
Member
Registered: 2019-09-09
Posts: 67  

Re: If the Devuan project...

If someone interested it is easy to add a Libre kernel free of BLOBS:

Just add new file to /etc/apt/sources.list.d/libre-kernel.list

with a single line like:

deb [arch=amd64] mirror://linux-libre.fsfla.org/pub/linux-libre/freesh/mirrors.txt freesh main

Then issue a command like:

apt-get update; apt get install linux-image-\*-gnu

and choose a kernel version.

Last edited by bimon (2020-05-08 12:22:34)

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#5 2020-05-08 12:19:53

Altoid
Member
Registered: 2017-05-07
Posts: 393  

Re: If the Devuan project...

Hello:

rolfie wrote:

... absolutely happy that firmware is available on the install media.
... easier to get the box to work ...
... wouldn't work without non-free ...

+1
Exactly my thoughts.

Cheers,

A.

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#6 2020-05-08 12:26:38

Altoid
Member
Registered: 2017-05-07
Posts: 393  

Re: If the Devuan project...

Hello:

randomer wrote:

... a downgrade from Debian.

Quite the contrary: Devuan is, non-free firmware or not, quite a substantial upgrade from Debian.
No need to explain why.

What you propose does not downgrade Devuan in any way.

What it does do is create yet another front/task to deal with at maintainers' HQ.
In my opinion, not something Devuan is needing right now.

Cheers,

A.

Last edited by Altoid (2020-05-08 12:28:26)

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#7 2020-05-08 12:38:07

randomer
Member
Registered: 2019-10-24
Posts: 56  

Re: If the Devuan project...

bimon wrote:

If someone interested it is easy to add a Libre kernel free of BLOBS.

Isn't the Devuan kernel free of blobs by default?

My point is to have additional, optional ISOs without the the firmware packages. I also think firmware should be included with the default ISOs.

People here are replying like "+1 hell yeah, firmware, just works". Seemingly without even reading my whole initial post.

Last edited by randomer (2020-05-08 12:40:40)

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#8 2020-05-08 12:43:13

bimon
Member
Registered: 2019-09-09
Posts: 67  

Re: If the Devuan project...

randomer wrote:
bimon wrote:

If someone interested it is easy to add a Libre kernel free of BLOBS.

Isn't the Devuan kernel free of blobs by default?

In my opinion Devuan uses default Debian kernels those are NOT free of BLOBs, obfuscated fragments, etc.

You can read more at:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux-libre

It would be very nice if Devuan would offer their own builds of Libre kernels like it is done in GUIX and Parabola distros.

Also a hardened variant of Libre kernel would be very welcome.

Some day in the past grsec kernel without BLOBs was included into a Devuan derivative Heads linux which unfortunately looks stalled now.

Last edited by bimon (2020-05-08 14:17:06)

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#9 2020-05-08 12:49:51

randomer
Member
Registered: 2019-10-24
Posts: 56  

Re: If the Devuan project...

bimon wrote:

In my opinion Devuan uses default Debian kernels those are NOT free of BLOBs, obfuscated fragments, etc.

I thought the Debian kernel can load non-free modules but does not by default (hence the unoffical firmware ISOs) and the linux-libre kernel blacklists non-free modules completely.

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#10 2020-05-08 13:36:23

Head_on_a_Stick
Member
From: London
Registered: 2019-03-24
Posts: 668  
Website

Re: If the Devuan project...

bimon wrote:

In my opinion Devuan uses default Debian kernels those are NOT free of BLOBs, obfuscated fragments, etc.

Please read your own Wikipedia link again, Debian & Devuan kernels are completely de-blobbed.


"Il semble que la perfection soit atteinte non quand il n'y a plus rien à ajouter, mais quand il n'y a plus rien à retrancher." — Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

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#11 2020-05-08 14:15:21

bimon
Member
Registered: 2019-09-09
Posts: 67  

Re: If the Devuan project...

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:
bimon wrote:

In my opinion Devuan uses default Debian kernels those are NOT free of BLOBs, obfuscated fragments, etc.

Please read your own Wikipedia link again, Debian & Devuan kernels are completely de-blobbed.

I was not able to get Intel CPU microcode update working without default kernel, Libre kernel failed to update CPU firmware on Devuan.

Last edited by bimon (2020-05-08 14:15:50)

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#12 2020-05-08 14:32:51

Head_on_a_Stick
Member
From: London
Registered: 2019-03-24
Posts: 668  
Website

Re: If the Devuan project...

bimon wrote:

I was not able to get Intel CPU microcode update working without default kernel

And what has that to do with the presence or absence of blobs in the kernel?

The µcode is baked into the initramfs by the 'update-initramfs' & 'mkinitramfs' scripts.


"Il semble que la perfection soit atteinte non quand il n'y a plus rien à ajouter, mais quand il n'y a plus rien à retrancher." — Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

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#13 2020-05-08 15:04:43

bimon
Member
Registered: 2019-09-09
Posts: 67  

Re: If the Devuan project...

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:
bimon wrote:

I was not able to get Intel CPU microcode update working without default kernel

And what has that to do with the presence or absence of blobs in the kernel?

The µcode is baked into the initramfs by the 'update-initramfs' & 'mkinitramfs' scripts.

Does not apt automatically update initramfs after installing a kernel or firmware?
I was not able to get CPU microcode updated from Libre kernel initramfs and was able from default kernel initramfs, may be I did something wrong, but nothing helped until a default non Libre kernel was booted.

Last edited by bimon (2020-05-08 15:17:03)

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#14 2020-05-08 15:57:22

fsmithred
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 1,500  

Re: If the Devuan project...

bimon wrote:

Does not apt automatically update initramfs after installing a kernel or firmware?
I was not able to get CPU microcode updated from Libre kernel initramfs and was able from default kernel initramfs, may be I did something wrong, but nothing helped until a default non Libre kernel was booted.

The problem you ran into is that the libre kernel prevents you from using non-free. That is its distinctive feature. Debian kernel has been non-blobbed since several releases ago. (Wheezy? Squeeze?)

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#15 2020-05-08 19:39:19

rolfie
Member
Registered: 2017-11-25
Posts: 297  

Re: If the Devuan project...

randomer wrote:

I did not suggest to only provide ISOs free of firmware. I suggested to provide additional ISOs without the firmware.

ACK. I wanted to express that I think that the small Devuan team does a great job. What they do fits the purpose. Your suggestion might overload the team.

rolfie

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#16 2020-05-08 20:28:27

golinux
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 1,912  

Re: If the Devuan project...

The way free software works is that if you want a feature, you offer it to the community.  You don't bitch and whine like a 5 year old thinking that it's someone else's job to do the work.  Time to grow up and contribute or shut up.

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#17 2020-05-08 20:39:25

randomer
Member
Registered: 2019-10-24
Posts: 56  

Re: If the Devuan project...

rolfie wrote:

ACK. I wanted to express that I think that the small Devuan team does a great job. What they do fits the purpose. Your suggestion might overload the team.

The Devuan team does a great job indeed and I am sorry if my post sounded demanding. I created this thread because I value having a choice. Debian offering both completely free and non-free ISOs initially made me switch from Trisquel a while ago.

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#18 2020-05-08 21:27:12

golinux
Administrator
Registered: 2016-11-25
Posts: 1,912  

Re: If the Devuan project...

@randomer . . . You can opt out of non-free with an "expert install".  Any other installation method provides firmware if needed.  If you have a different vision, please do share the code.

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#19 2020-05-09 09:54:56

randomer
Member
Registered: 2019-10-24
Posts: 56  

Re: If the Devuan project...

golinux wrote:

You can opt out of non-free with an "expert install".

I am aware of that. What about live images? Testing the beta2 live image kinda lead me to creating this thread. Of course one can remove the firmware after firing up the live ISO but at this point the damage could theoretically be done already if one does not trust proprietary code.

golinux wrote:

If you have a different vision, please do share the code.

Isn't it Debian's vision? That was kinda the initial point. I'd offer my contribution if it would not exceed my knowledge, so I better shut up now like u told me to in an earlier post.

Have a nice day.

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