No 32bit packages?

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dizwell
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No 32bit packages?

Post by dizwell » 2014/08/04 04:57:52

When I download the 'DVD ISO' for a 64-bit CentOS 7 install, I get no 32-bit packages included (i.e., glibc.i686, to name but one, isn't present on the installation media -and no other i686 packages are, either). If I want the mix of 64-bit and 32-bit packages we got on standard CentOS 6.x 64-bit installation media in the past, it appears I have to download the 'Everything ISO' instead.

I haven't had a chance to check Red Hat 7's installation media yet, but since it comes in at a svelte 3.5GB, I'm sort of expecting the same thing.

However, Oracle Enterprise Linux 7 64-bit ships at just over 4GB and *does* include many .i686 packages.

Can you point me to any discussions/explanations as to why RH/CentOS have decided to ship 'pure 64-bit' by default? I find it a somewhat surprising decision in a way: a lot of servers are, I would have thought, likely to end up running Oracle's database software... and even the latest 64-bit versions of that won't install without the 32-bit libraries being available. You can of course yum install the relevant 32-bit packages when needed, but I don't know a lot of production database servers that would have direct access to the Internet! So the lack of the i686 on the 'default' installation media seems likely to cause a bit of grief. If there's some background information to explain the packaging decisions, I'd love to read it. Thanks.

dizwell
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by dizwell » 2014/08/04 21:25:54

Well, I finally got to check the 3.5GB Red Hat download... and it does contain over 1000 .i686 packages, including the all-import glibc ones.

Which means CentOS is slightly odd in not including any at all in its standard 'DVD download' release.

I would still like to know why that decision was made, or at least get some background on it, if possible.

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TrevorH
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by TrevorH » 2014/08/04 22:40:09

The main decision about the packages to be included on the main DVD was "are they selectable from the installer or are they dependencies of those packages that can be selected from the installer". That was done to make sure that the main DVD was self-contained and would not ask for a second DVD. The "Everything" DVD was then created containing all packages. It was assumed that casual installers would be using DVD1 and professionals installing multiple systems and using their own local repos would be more likely to download the "Everything" DVD and use that to create their initial repos. I'm not aware that any discussion at all took place about 32 bit packages and I doubt if there is enough room on the first DVD to fit 1000 32 bit packages on there in addition to the ones that can be selected from the installer.
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dizwell
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by dizwell » 2014/08/06 03:54:59

I doubt if there is enough room on the first DVD to fit 1000 32 bit packages on there

Except that Red Hat and Oracle both manage to do precisely that.

CentOS's packaging is completely out-of-line with what the other RHEL and RHELish clones are doing. Neither RHEL nor OEL ask for a second DVD when you do a default install, either.

Seems odd to me.
Thanks for the feedback though.

Don
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by Don » 2014/08/06 05:43:55

TrevorH wrote:The main decision about the packages to be included on the main DVD was "are they selectable from the installer or are they dependencies of those packages that can be selected from the installer".
RedHat's "server" DVD is not constrained by that requirement. Things like unoconv, and its dependencies of libreoffice*, are not included on RedHat's "server" DVD (even though unoconv is a dependency).

If you load a "Server with GUI" using RedHat's "server" DVD, you end up with a server without libreoffice. If you load a "Server with GUI" using CentOS' Everything DVD you end up with a server with libreoffice loaded. I'm assuming the same is true for the CentOS "main" DVD. (I've only used the "Everything" DVD ISO.)

I'm guessing that the space saved by not including libreoffice on RedHat's server DVD helped them have room for the 32bit packages.

dizwell
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by dizwell » 2014/08/07 03:45:19

Understood. But this then merely comes down to someone making a decision how to 'pack' CentOS, and deciding to do it quite differently than the upstreamers did.

And, my point is, I think they made apparently perverse decisions in that regard. Given the Enterprisey nature of CentOS, is it more likely to end up running LibreOffice or Oracle databases, would you say? Would it even be running a GUI at all in many cases? I haven't met many servers that run word processors, anyway...

Not saying my experience (strictly no GUI and plenty of Oracle) is going to apply to everyone or even a majority, but it nevertheless seems an choice of priorities to me.

It will be interesting to see how Scientific Linux decide this matter, too, I guess.

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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by gerald_clark » 2014/08/07 04:06:46

RHEL's choices clearly show that they are moving towards desktops.

dizwell
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by dizwell » 2014/08/08 00:13:30

I don't know how you arrive at that conclusion from the facts as described: RHEL includes 32-bit libraries making an off-the-disk installation that's suitable for Oracle servers a piece of cake; CentOS, on the other hand, decided to ditch the 32-bit libraries, making it impossible to install an Oracle server off-disk. Unless you plug your server into the Internet, use dual layer DVDs or otherwise jump through hoops.

CentOS is going off my list of recommended distros for would-be Oracle DBAs, in short, because they've made it harder than it needs to be. Apparently because they think I need a word processor in my server room...

gerald_clark
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by gerald_clark » 2014/08/08 00:51:09

So do a network installation off the everything iso loop mounted on any handy machine in your network.
You are setting up strawmen.

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TrevorH
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Re: No 32bit packages?

Post by TrevorH » 2014/08/08 00:57:08

That was the exact thinking behind the Everything DVD - Systems Administrators who do this all the time would want the Everything DVD to loopback mount as their installation repository and the download of one DVD image for that would be much easier than downloading two and then trying to recombine them.
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