shrinking the desktop DVD image to 1.5GB

Stéphane Graber stgraber at
Thu Jun 9 18:00:50 UTC 2011

On Thu, 2011-06-09 at 10:49 -0700, Steve Langasek wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 09, 2011 at 07:23:31AM +0200, Martin Pitt wrote:
> > Phillip Susi [2011-06-08 21:52 -0400]:
> > > One thing that would be nice to fix with the existing DVD image is the
> > > waste of space it has from duplicating the language packs both as
> > > packages in the pool, and being installed in the sqashfs live image,
> > > which is MUCH larger than the one on the livecd.
> > I agree, duplicating them is a hideous waste.
> > > It seems like the language packs should only be included in the
> > > pool, not the squashfs image, and installed on demand.
> > I disagree. They should only be in the squashfs image, so that you can
> > actually _use_ the live system in your local language. 
> Is there any reason that they have to be in the squashfs image to get that
> effect?  I know that's how it's architected today, but would it actually be
> a better experience to have a much smaller squashfs that needs to be
> unpacked, to which the correct language pack is applied on-the-fly as soon
> as we know what language the user has selected?
> Cons:
>  - have to wait for apt before starting the login session or ubiquity
>  - new code has to be written
> Pros:
>  - shorter livefs build time
>  - shorter install time
>  - potentially *reusable* squashfs image, that can be extended for new
>    locales just by dropping it on a new ISO including a different package
>    repo
> Is this worth exploring?

It's actually how I planned to fix it for Edubuntu :)

The idea was to check if the user chose something else than English and
if so prompt them in Xsession (while we can still change $LANG).
They'd then have the choice to either install the langpack and get a
translated live session (if they have enough RAM for that) or continue
in English and only have ubiquity translated.

In all cases, ubiquity would grab the langpacks from the pool and
install them.

Stéphane Graber
Ubuntu developer
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