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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby GarryRicketson » 2018-11-26 13:43

Well, I don't see what is so confusing, but if these "newbies" would just read some of the Debian documentation before they start installing, they would would have a better idea about what they are doing, I know that is a really difficult concept, and it might be confusing to some, I mean the concept, idea, of actually reading some documentation before making the decision to install Debian.
For example, if one does not know this:
So, what is "Debian desktop environment"? Is that a new kind of DE designed by Debian?

What is the Debian Desktop Environment
The first hit : https://wiki.debian.org/DebianDesktopHowTo
Select a Desktop Environment

To select the desktop environment that the debian-installer installs, enter "Advanced options" on the boot screen and scroll down to "Alternative desktop environments". Otherwise, debian-installer will choose GNOME.


There also is : https://wiki.debian.org/DesktopEnvironment

And even though some people claim this forum never shows in any searches:
Debian User Forums • View topic - Installing Jessie - what is ...
forums.debian.net/viewtopic.php?t=125037

Anonymous View

2 Oct 2015 ... Debian desktop environment (already ticked by default) ... I do not understand what is Debian desktop environment in the above context.

by class » I do not want anyone to misunderstand Debian!

If your concern really is to help someone understand Debian, maybe suggest to them to read some of the documentation, before deciding which version they install, ...That is what the documentation was written for.

There is no excuse for a so called "newbie" to remain ignorant, if a newbie remains ignorant it is because they have chosen to be lazy and not read anything ahead of time.

by class »Do all of you think that the DE selection during debian installation is OK?

I can't speak for every body, but I think it is OK, I never had any problem with it,... but then I read some of the documentation before I started blindly installing it.
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby golinux » 2018-11-26 15:15

classe wrote:Maybe Debian love GNOME; they do not like the other DEs, so, they make two GNOME options on the selection screen: one is GNOME, and the other is "Debian desktop environment"; Debian want all people to use GNOME, maybe~

They do. They also love systemd. Please read this to understand where Gnome et al are are headed.
May the FORK be with you!
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby MALsPa » 2018-11-26 15:34

The OP did read the documentation, and said so, although not in the first post. If everything was all so clear then maybe this topic wouldn't keep coming up. It doesn't make much sense to have both the "Debian desktop environment" and "GNOME" selections when both give the user the same thing. That's the main source of the confusion. The first one should be removed and the second one could be something like "GNOME (default)".

Too bad that some think that clearing all this up would be a waste of time for the devs. Not clearing it up leads to a waste of time for users, and a waste of time for forum members.
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby debiman » 2018-11-26 16:48

^ i don't see it that way.
fwiw, i just went through the motions of installing debian in a vm, trying to stick to default options as much as possible with the graphical install (the default install method), and evtl. got to this screen:
Image
i didn't change anything, it was all preselected and highlighted like this.
it's also exactly the same as OP posted.
this is clear enough:
the pre-selected default means: "I'm not sure; I'll go with what the installer recommends".
but there are still choices. the choices also include gnome, and the default isn't marked being the same as gnome. granted, this could have been designed better, but i don't see it as a problem.
saying this is confusing, is the same as saying "Let's not give them any choices at all. It's really the best solution for everybody involved." sound familiar?

it's always confusing.

yes, problems like this keep cropping up.
they will continue to do so as long as you give people choices, or don't put a safety belt on all sorts of configuration options.
people overestimate their abilities and end up borking their systems.
it's the freedom of gnu/linux.
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby MALsPa » 2018-11-26 21:58

Some comments I found (see: https://unix.stackexchange.com/questions/445829/debian-desktop-environment-in-installer):

If no specific desktop environment is selected, but the “Debian desktop environment” is, the default which ends up installed is determined by tasksel: on i386 and amd64, it’s GNOME, on other architectures, it’s XFCE.

And the second reply there:

The Debian-desktop-environment option appears to add distro branding [...]


That is not "official" documentation, of course. The installation manual is "official" documentation, but I don't see where that info is provided in the installation manual. Maybe I'm not looking hard enough, or maybe my reading comprehension is failing me in my old age.


The OP asked:

classe wrote:What's the difference between "Debian desktop environment" and "GNOME" ?

I don't think there's any difference. If somebody sees the answer to that question in the installation manual, or even in the wiki, please feel free to point it out.

Back when I was trying to get some clarification on questions like these, the way I finally ended up trying to get to the bottom of it was by trial-and-error, doing multiple installations, selecting different options to see what would happen. That worked ok for me, but that is not the ideal approach, of course.
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby GarryRicketson » 2018-11-27 01:13

Postby MALsPa » If somebody sees the answer to that question in the installation manual, or even in the wiki, please feel free to point it out.

Just another example of not reading things carefully
I all ready did point out where it say that in the wiki:
Me: https://wiki.debian.org/DebianDesktopHowTo

Select a Desktop Environment

To select the desktop environment that the debian-installer installs, enter "Advanced options" on the boot screen and scroll down to "Alternative desktop environments". Otherwise, debian-installer will choose GNOME.




FIRST go to : https://www.debian.org/releases/stretch/amd64/
Debian GNU/Linux Installation Guide
Then if one actually reads it all, eventually they get to this part:
https://www.debian.org/releases/stretch/amd64/ch06.html.en
6. Using the Debian Installer

6.1. How the Installer Works

6.1.1. Using the graphical installer

6.2. Components Introduction
6.3. Using Individual Components

6.3.1. Setting up Debian Installer and Hardware Configuration
6.3.2. Setting Up Users And Passwords
6.3.3. Partitioning and Mount Point Selection
6.3.4. Installing the Base System
6.3.5. Installing Additional Software

Installing Additional Software:

From: https://www.debian.org/releases/stretch/amd64/ch06s03.html.en#di-install-software
[Note] Note

The “Desktop environment” task will install a graphical desktop environment.

By default, debian-installer installs the Gnome desktop environment. It is possible to interactively select a different desktop environment during the installation. It is also possible to install multiple desktops, but some combinations of desktop may not be co-installable.

Note that this will only work if the packages needed for the desired desktop environment are actually available. If you are installing using a single full CD image, they will possibly need to be downloaded from a network mirror as some of the needed packages for your choice might only be included on later CDs. Installing any of the available desktop environments this way should work fine if you are using a DVD image or any other installation method.


The thing of it is, most people might glance at it, but then they see it is very detailed, has a lot of chapters and information, but they are just lazy, or don't know how to read , any way it intimidates them, " Oh no, I can't read all that", or "I don't have the time to read all that", what ever excuse they come up with, the result is the same, they then end up wasting other peoples time, because they don't want to or can not take the time to read some instructions carefully and thoroughly.
Do you want me to also send a request to the development mail-list, and ask the developers to include additional text in the installer for you ? Like I said , for me it never was any problem, but I suppose for a few people it is, and we need in bold or large text,
" Gnome will be installed as the default Desktop Environment, if you do not select any other. "
The problem, some people try to whiz through everything and don't take the time to pay attention, and don't really read what the installer says either, it is not likely those kind of people would notice the statement.
The term "Debian desktop environment" does not mean Gnome, or KDE, or any particular desktop environment, the Debian desktop environment is what ever Desktop one decides to install to Debian, and for those that do not want a DE, they don't have to install Gnome, Mate, XFCE, etc,... they can install a Window Manager instead.
In that case, they do NOT want to select any DesktopEnvironment,and can install the Window manager after they finish the base install, the wiki goes into that as well:
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby MALsPa » 2018-11-27 04:05

Okay, GarryRicketson. What I quoted from the stackexchange threads, I don't see those things mentioned in the installation manual. Let's take them one at a time.

If no specific desktop environment is selected, but the “Debian desktop environment” is, the default which ends up installed is determined by tasksel: on i386 and amd64, it’s GNOME, on other architectures, it’s XFCE.


You'll see the following note in section 6.3.5.2 of the amd64 and i386 versions of the installation manual:
By default, debian-installer installs the Gnome desktop environment. It is possible to interactively select a different desktop environment during the installation. It is also possible to install multiple desktops, but some combinations of desktop may not be co-installable.


In the same section of the installation manual for other architectures, the note says this:
By default, debian-installer installs the desktop environment. It is possible to interactively select a different desktop environment during the installation. It is also possible to install multiple desktops, but some combinations of desktop may not be co-installable.


Xfce is not mentioned anywhere in section 6.3. Perhaps it is mentioned elsewhere in the installation manual. But one can conclude that for the other architectures, "the desktop environment" is something other than GNOME. Fine. Moving on:

The Debian-desktop-environment option appears to add distro branding [...]

I do not see anything about that in section 6.3 of the installation manual. Do you? I mean, perhaps it's buried somewhere in the installation manual, but it sure hasn't been made easy to find. It looks like the poster was just guessing there, perhaps.



Finally, you wrote:
GarryRicketson wrote:" Gnome will be installed as the default Desktop Environment, if you do not select any other. "

Except if you're installing for an architecture other than i386 or amd64, apparently.

GarryRicketson wrote:The term "Debian desktop environment" does not mean Gnome, or KDE, or any particular desktop environment, the Debian desktop environment is what ever Desktop one decides to install to Debian

Except if no desktop is selected, then the "Debian desktop environment" option will install GNOME, unless you're installing for an architecture other than i386 or amd64, in which case the "Debian desktop environment" option with no other DE selected actually means Xfce, apparently.


Anyway, my point is that, in my humble opinion, and in the opinion of many other users (obviously), the tasksel section of the installer is not clear to many users, and the documentation is not clear to many users, either. It does not have to be this way, but it is. What keeps being repeated here is stuff like "It's clear to me, I see no problem" and "Read the documentation". Well, sir, I do read the documentation. And, as well, I have had to spend a lot of time reading detailed documentation for Arch, which is my other "main distro" that I run here. I know, I know, we aren't talking about Arch, but I thought that perhaps I should mention it.

But, whatever, personally I've been installing and running Debian for a long time now, and I really don't have any problem with getting the setups that I want, whether it be one DE or another DE, or no DE at all.

Too bad that you "waste" your time trying to help people, but of course, you're the one who chooses to do so, nobody's holding a gun to your head forcing you to do that. My suggestion to you is that if you want to help people, then just do that and quit complaining about it being a waste of your time. You're just irritating yourself (and others, perhaps) by trying to make people live up to your expectations, sir.


GarryRicketson wrote: Do you want me to also send a request to the development mail-list, and ask the developers to include additional text in the installer for you ?

:roll:
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby GarryRicketson » 2018-11-27 13:29

MALsPa wrote:The OP did read the documentation, and said so, although not in the first post. If everything was all so clear then maybe this topic wouldn't keep coming up. It doesn't make much sense to have both the "Debian desktop environment" and "GNOME" selections when both give the user the same thing. That's the main source of the confusion. The first one should be removed and the second one could be something like "GNOME (default)".

Too bad that some think that clearing all this up would be a waste of time for the devs. Not clearing it up leads to a waste of time for users, and a waste of time for forum members.


Actually, I don't think it is a waste of time, that is why I am here, some people just can not comprehend what is said in the documentation, your the one tat said it is a waste of time.
But any way, what ever, your right , I am wrong, and I am done with this pointless argument.
Too bad that you "waste" your time trying to help people, but of course, you're the one who chooses to do so, nobody's holding a gun to your head forcing you to do that. My suggestion to you is that if you want to help people, then just do that and quit complaining about it being a waste of your time. You're just irritating yourself (and others, perhaps) by trying to make people live up to your expectations, sir.

And like I offered, if your to lazy or ignorant to realize nobody here can change what the installer says, or does not say, we are not the developers, how ever it is easy enough to find the mailing list at debian.org , and I will be happy to send a complaint about the installer to them , for you, if that is what you want .
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby None1975 » 2018-11-27 13:56

I do not understand where the problem is here? The instructions are clearly written. Citing
By default, debian-installer installs the Gnome desktop environment. It is possible to interactively select a different desktop environment during the installation.

If the person has suggestions on how to improve the installer's work, he can take advantage and send a request to the development mail-list. The debian-boot mailing list is the main forum for discussion and work on Debian-Installer.
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby MALsPa » 2018-11-28 09:24

Folks, thanks for the suggestions about the mailing list. I don't really want to do that. If someone else wants to do that, fine.

None1975 wrote:
By default, debian-installer installs the Gnome desktop environment. It is possible to interactively select a different desktop environment during the installation.


This has been mentioned a few times now. Again, it's from a note in section 6.3.5.2 in the installation manual (amd64 and i386 versions).

In the corresponding note in the installation manuals for the other eight architectures (see: https://www.debian.org/releases/stable/installmanual) (I checked each one), same section, the note reads:

By default, debian-installer installs the desktop environment. It is possible to interactively select a different desktop environment during the installation.


So, in those versions of the installation manual, we find that the words "installs the Gnome desktop environment" are replaced by "installs the desktop environment".

I'm too lazy/ignorant/intimidated/busy (take your pick) to dig through the manuals to determine if this means that for those other eight architectures, Xfce is installed instead of GNOME in that situation. I don't know how many users go with isos for architectures other than i386 or amd64. I have never needed to do so, myself.

Quoting again from https://unix.stackexchange.com/questions/445829/debian-desktop-environment-in-installer:

If no specific desktop environment is selected, but the “Debian desktop environment” is, the default which ends up installed is determined by tasksel: on i386 and amd64, it’s GNOME, on other architectures, it’s XFCE.


My question, for anybody who has in fact installed for one of those other architectures: Is that in fact the case?
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby classe » 2018-11-28 12:41

Thanks for all of your replying!

English is not my native language, so, when addressing this topic, I have to looking up the dictionary at the same time. It's a little .... you know, not so easy, but I tryed my best, thank you~

--------------------------
First, please allow me to show you a metaphor:

Somebody orders a laptop from the Dell's website. On the web page, under the "Customization" tab, buyers can customize the CPU/MEMORY/HDD/OS and so on.
The "OS" there, buyers can select "Windows 10 Home" or "Windows 10 Pro". This is the reality.
Now, above the " Home" and "Pro" os options, a new option appears: Dell OS . Buyer can tick "Windows 10 Home", or tick "Windows 10 Pro", or "Dell OS". The "Dell OS" is the default selection by the website.

So, the buyer feels confused, he/she do not know what the "Dell Os" is. Maybe he/she knows windows 10 home and windows 10 pro. But the Dell brand is a brand that he/she had never used before. And, a very interesting thing is, on another web page, Dell shows that what the "Dell OS" is: it is a default selection for anybody who do not know how to make a decision between "Windows 10 Home" and "Windows 10 Pro", if the "Dell OS" was ticked, it means that "Windows 10 Home" is ticked.

I do believe that the "Dell OS" is not a necessary option! It can be throw away. In fact thers isn't a "Dell OS" option on the web page.
-----------------------------

The metaphor above shows that what is baffliing me on the DE selection screen during the installation!

Before the first installation of Debian, I read the stretch installation guide roughly. Then I was confused by the DE selection screen. I do not know that there is a new kind of DE except KDE/GNOME/XFCE... and, I do not know what would happen if I ticked the "Debian desktop environment".

After the installation, I knew that it IS gnome. It worked very well, I didn't have any loss. But, I was curious that there were two "gnome" options for users. So, I did many search job and reinstall Debian for more than three times. Most messages mentioned above by you were already read and analyzed by me over the next two months, off and on, especially the Debian wiki and strecth installation manual. Even I checked the selection screen on Debian7 and Debian8(they are the same as stretch). But, the result is, I still do not understand why the "Debian desktop environment" appears!

For myself, thers is no problems about the DE selection. I used Arch Linux before Debian, and now I can do anything what I want to do with Debian.

But, I have an additional task(not much) to recommend linux distribution to somebody who never uses any linux distributions. For this issue, I can tell him/her to search the wiki, to search the manual, to study the defference between windows and linux... Yes, it's very simple, and it will work. The newbie can install Debian smoothly and can use Debian without anything lose. But, what would they think about the DE selections? like Dell OS? a totally unneessary option? or a mistake by Debian? or a bad design? I don't think that it would be a good conjecture. Not everyone, like me, is going to delve into a problem like this.

I want to recommend sb a good linux distribution, an excellent linux distribution. If it is not good enough, I want to do something to make it better.

I don't think that it's a mistake. Because the DE selection page had been used by three big versions (buster and sid not tested on my laptop). So,maybe there were something we don't know I guess.
I'm here and I post this topic. I want to know if there was something that I had missed. And before I confirm this, I don't want to bother devs, it would be better to do some more work.

But, if there were no other reasons for the "Debian desktop environment", I think that it is really necessary to drop sth to the devs. Do you think so?

Thanks,
Classe,


---
Last edited by classe on 2018-12-01 14:01, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby None1975 » 2018-11-28 13:43

MALsPa wrote:Folks, thanks for the suggestions about the mailing list. I don't really want to do that. If someone else wants to do that, fine.

You are welcome.
MALsPa wrote:This has been mentioned a few times now. Again, it's from a note in section 6.3.5.2 in the installation manual (amd64 and i386 versions).

Also, this is quote from the The Debian Administrator's Handbook
Debian Jessie includes GNOME version 3.14, which can be installed by a simple apt-get install gnome (it can also be installed by selecting the “Debian desktop environment” task).
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby milomak » 2018-12-02 17:16

classe wrote:Somebody orders a laptop from the Dell's website. On the web page, under the "Customization" tab, buyers can customize the CPU/MEMORY/HDD/OS and so on.
The "OS" there, buyers can select "Windows 10 Home" or "Windows 10 Pro". This is the reality.
Now, above the " Home" and "Pro" os options, a new option appears: Dell OS . Buyer can tick "Windows 10 Home", or tick "Windows 10 Pro", or "Dell OS". The "Dell OS" is the default selection by the website.
---

for many reasons it really is not the same at all
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby classe » 2018-12-04 17:36

milomak wrote:for many reasons it really is not the same at all


I guess there must be something that I don't know. It's why I post this topic here.

Would you please to introduce it easily?
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Re: Desktop selection during installation

Postby Soapm » 2018-12-04 20:51

I could be wrong but I've always seen them as two different questions.

DE = Do you want a desktop environment or headless (do you want X11).

Then it ask how do you want to interact with the desktop, what GUI do you want to use?
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