Re: Thank you for a nice article
I installed 3.16 shortly after it came out, replacing an existing 3.15 installation. I use the "standard" ISO.
I tried an in-place upgrade from 3.15 to 3.16 which mostly worked but would for some reason not install a working pip (python).
I gave up on that and tried a fresh install. That kept getting stuck because when I tried to create a user (following the setup-alipine script) it would refuse saying that it wouldn't let me because the user already existed (I was creating the same user as was in the previous install).
I finally just re-formatted the disk using the disk setup script, which I believe is setup-disk.
I then ran setup-alpine again and was able to create the user. However, it didn't create a user directory for that user. I had to create that manually and set the appropriate permission bits manually.
I have gone through the installation process probably two dozen times now in order to get working systems for both 3.15 and 3.16.
I am using it on an old x86 32 bit system with a hard drive. I normally use it as a headless system accessing it by ssh. I plug in a monitor and keyboard for setup. The CPU does not support later x86 instructions, so for example 32 bit Debian will not run on it (the installer complains about a missing CMOV instruction). Alpine does run and this is the reason that I persisted with it.
The installation script has good and bad points. The good point is that it limits the number of options.
The bad points are that it's often not clear what is being asked and there isn't any way of going back and changing an option once you have made a selection.
The selection of mirrors is a complete train wreck. Most of the list scrolls off the top of the screen before you have a chance to see it. I always have to just pick "fastest" and then go back and edit the file manually after installation if I'm not happy with the choice it made.
I was never able to get through an installation in one go. The networking configuration would always seem to fail somehow and the process would stop due to a lack of network connection. I would then figure out how to get the network running and run through configuration again to get through the final steps.
I'm satisfied with the Debian text based installer. You might want to have a look at that for a guide. The Ubuntu server installer is also good guide.
What might be particularly useful is some way of doing a headless install which inserts a configuration file into the ISO so you just create and edit the file, run a script to insert it into the ISO (or build a new ISO), boot from that, and the configuration script reads the file and does what it needs to do based on that. The Raspberry Pi imaging program does this for its images (which are not ISOs). This would be useful for people setting up headless systems where they don't want to have to drag out an extra monitor to set it up.
I believe the setup system has some sort of way of creating a "replay" file, but that assumes you already have a working system that you want to duplicate. It doesn't help if you don't have that.