Debian Installer lenny beta 1

March 17th, 2008

The Debian Installer team is proud to announce the first beta of Debian Lenny's Installer.

This is the first release since Etch and the whole team has been hard at work during the past 11 months to make this release full of new features and bugfixes.

We do need your help to find bugs and further improve the installer, so please try it.

Improvements in this release of the installer

A comprehensive changelog of what has changed since the release of Etch is available on the wiki.

Support for CD/DVD sets is back

Support for loading additional CDs or DVDs from a set (a feature missing in Etch) has been added again. As language-related packages do not all fit on the first CD, this greatly improves the situation for non-English speakers performing installations without internet connectivity.

Clock synchronization using NTP

By default, the installer will now attempt to synchronize the system clock using the Network Time Protocol (NTP) when a network connection has been configured. The hardware clock will be updated before the system is rebooted.

This ensures a valid system time during installation, preventing odd behaviors with cryptographic signatures or filesystem checks.

Support for volatile has been added

The installer now supports adding the repository when adding additional APT sources. In the same way as, it will be configured by default when the stable distribution is installed.

In addition, it is now possible to disable the security and volatile sources when the installer is run in expert mode and will be configured by default for installations of testing.

Please read the debian-volatile homepage for more information about the volatile project.

Starting the installer from Microsoft Windows

Since the integration of the win32-loader package, it is now possible to start the installer directly from Microsoft Windows without the need to change BIOS settings. Upon insertion of a CD-ROM, DVD-ROM or USB stick, an autorun program will be started, offering a step-by-step process to start the Debian Installer. A few installer settings (including language) will be preconfigured from this process.

Experimental support for Serial ATA RAID (dmraid)

As previously announced, the Debian Installer now includes experimental support for installing Debian on systems with Serial ATA RAID as supported in Linux via the dmraid utility. Please see the dedicated wiki page for more information.

Other noteworthy changes

No longer supported

Known issues in this release

Plans for next Beta release

The next beta will be focused mainly on getting an installer version working with Linux 2.6.24.

Other contributors have nevertheless mentioned working on non-free firmware support, improvements in the partioner, locale support and mirror selection and improvements in the graphical installer.

The Debian Installer team is still looking for active contributors for new features, bug triaging and squashing, improvements on the manual and the developer documentation. If you want Lenny to release on time, please join and help!

Installation CDs, other media, and everything else you'll need are available from our web site.