CLI installer or Calamares or why not both?

What would you prefer as our installer?

  • Current AL installer (CLI)
  • Calamares based
  • Both? Choose your favourite at install time.

0 voters

I like the cli installer, but how much of a pain is it to manage that many options as far as desktop/window managers/programs etc in the installer for the maintainers or whatever, or is the installer kind of a set and forget type deal unless bugs show up and need to be dealt with? I suppose im asking if it is trying to do too much maybe? Most not all distros just offer one flavour like bunsenlabs does, its openbox with all the trimmings.

It ain’t broke. I’m very new to Linux and utterly new to Arch. The installer was not a challenge and worked fine on my aging iMac. At the points where I needed clarification, I simply searched and learned something.


I agree with Johnnybeverage, and I would say “we learn by searching” and between us the installation is not esotheric. @Dobbie03 is it possible to input options in calamares ?

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Bet that both of these installers would be good ( on next AL edition), but might be more work on the devs but could have the users to choose which one they prefer to use.

CLI installer all the way!!! The ArchLabs installer is a fantastic tool. I love the desktop and software choices, none of which would be available in the Calamares installer. If you are getting pressure from people, include both, but please do not discontinue the AL installer.

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I’m really happy to see there is a lot of love here for the CLI installer. That is my favourite installer.

@AvnSgt @TimApple @Chris @dimaom, you onboard for keeping both?

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Love what you have done with the cli installer. Sometimes though, I just want three clicks and five minutes later I am good to go. Therefore, I voted for both. :slight_smile:


Ultimately it comes down to bandwidth, to make a sane decision here. Is there enough support to maintain two installers and continue to grow the distro?

Pretty much it @AvnSgt .

If by “grow the distro” you mean more users? Then the answer is Calamares, or both, an easy installer attracts new users. That means also more work here at the forum! ;D The cli installer might in fact scare off some less experienced users.

Or make the cli installer function exclusively as a small netinstall image as an alternative. :smiley:

I know I prefer the CLI installer. Maybe @AvnSgt let’s see how we go with this release including both?

I know the feeling. And, rest assured, I will not release a version of Calamares that has not been tested to ensure it is solid and working with the modules being used.

At this time @archus no module exists to allow you to select packages you want to install as an end users. However, there is a packages module which allows for some custom deployment, but again, this is done on the back end. Keep in mind Calamares is more of a set it and forget it installer. It was designed with easy of use in mind for end users want a more natural out of the box experience, like some other OSes I will not name.

I don’t mind, just need to either make it so people can choose or have two .isos

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Two iso’s sounds like a plan. How much extra work is it all going to be though?

I will figure it out with @AvnSgt, but I would think we would need 2 trees to build from, one for each…or maybe we can make it a flag somehow.

Sounds good, I’m still doing my job as well as the managers job at work for now and will probably continue to if I get this promotion until I replace my position.

When I know where I will be I will be able to make some effort towards the ISO.

The two iso solution sounds like a very good idea to me. I just hope that it do not bring to much extra work to the team. :slight_smile:

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You are on the write track. Essentially there will be a master ISO tree and 2 or more branches. Currently the master tree has one new branch, which is being used to experiment with the new installer. This branch will eventually get squashed and moved into a deployment branch, leaving the master tree un-affected, unless it is determined we want to add a change permanently to the master tree, via cherry-picking.

But, I got a full week a head of me and won’t get any changes done until the beginning of June.