"IdeaPool" wiki page, active ?

Vincent Trouilliez vincent.trouilliez at modulonet.fr
Sat Oct 14 02:00:30 BST 2006

Hello, beloved Ubuntu devs,

I just saw mdz's call for specs on devel-announce, for the coming Edgy+1
UDS. I have ideas for future Ubuntu versions, but too vague too warrant
a spec, really just an idea. 
I found this page on the wiki:


where normal users can throw there random thoughts about
possible improvements. Looks like the ideal place for me to put my
But, since there are a million and one page in the wiki... is this page
actually "official", do the devs know about it, do you actually look at
it before every summit, to come up for ideas for specs ? Or are these
ideas just lost in cyberspace hence plain useless ?
If the page is actually looked at seriously, I will ad my bit, if it's
not, I will just lay it here, I think it's not off topic ;-)

I use the package manager a lot, and am frustrated to see that when I
install many packages (typically, when updating regularly the current
development version), it takes a lot more time to install the tons of
packages, than it takes to download them (and in the long run, this is
only going to worsen as ADSL is progressively phased out in favour of
optical fiber networks). Also, when I install a stable version from the
CD, most of the time is spent boiling the CPU whilst installing
(decompressing, setting up, whatever its doing ;-) the packages, rather
than reading from the CD or accessing the hard drive. So would be great
to speed up the installation of packages. Since the speed of processors
in the foreseeable future isn't going to increase, but instead the
number of cores does, it would be nice to start investigating ways to
make use of multiple CPU cores to speed up installation of packages (or
whatever else in the system might be very slow). I don't have a clue
what's going on when the package manager eats up the CPU when
installing a package, so I don't know if it's at all possible to
redesign it to take advantage of multiple CPUs. But as a first step,
maybe when you have 200 packages to install, maybe it's possible for
the package manager to seat back and take a moment to elaborate a plan
to figure out if some packages could be processed in parallel rather
than sequentially, if they don't depend on each other ? I don't know,
say we download a gnome lib (say 'A'), and two apps (say 'B' and 'C' )
that depend on it. Instead of installing A B C one after the other,
could it be possible to install A, then B and C in parallel, rather
than sequentially ? That would be the basic concept, then the PM would
analyze the bunch of updates, and figure out the best "strategy" (based
on dependencies) to figure out the quickest route to get all the
packages installed in the shortest possible time.
That's the idea then, start rearranging, or redesigning stuff, to take
advantage of multiple CPU's, where it could be advantageous.
Multiple CPU's aren't yet the norm, but it's getting there  I think,
and since redesigning programs is probably a huge R&D, time consuming
task, it's better to start a bit early to be ready when dual cores will
be entry level and quad and more processors top of the range.



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