[Jaunty] Misleading information when installing with mounted partitions

Bug #346589 reported by Vojtěch Trefný on 2009-03-22
16
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
Release Notes for Ubuntu
Undecided
Colin Watson
ubiquity (Ubuntu)
High
Evan
Jaunty
High
Evan

Bug Description

Binary package hint: ubiquity

I have tried to install Ubuntu with some mounted partions. Displayed warning/information good, but the button labeled "Go back" is very misleading, because it doesn't go back -- it just ignores mounted partitions (don't umount them). Also button "Continue" is not very good labeled.

Ubiquity version: 1.11.19

Related branches

Evan (ev) on 2009-03-23
Changed in ubiquity (Ubuntu):
status: New → Fix Committed
Matt Zimmerman (mdz) wrote :

Evan, does your commit fix both of the issues identified here:

1. The pop-up should not be displayed at all
2. The buttons on the dialog don't behave as expected

If not, we should file a bug for the other one.

Changed in ubiquity (Ubuntu):
assignee: nobody → evand
importance: Undecided → High
Evan (ev) wrote :

Matt,

I'm aware of how horrible having UI here is, I've been wondering if there's anything we can do for the cases where we know that we have partitions that we just don't want to touch, such as in the case of usb disks created with usb-creator or mobile images.

Unfortunate as it is, the dialog is necessary as we cannot reread the partition table of disks with mounted partitions. The buttons in the UI in bzr trunk are "Yes" and "No" with translations taken from GTK. They behave just as you would expect, "No" means that the install will proceed without being able to use the disks with mounted partitions as an install target, "Yes" tries to unmount them.

On Tue, Mar 24, 2009 at 10:54:50AM -0000, Evan Dandrea wrote:
> I'm aware of how horrible having UI here is, I've been wondering if
> there's anything we can do for the cases where we know that we have
> partitions that we just don't want to touch, such as in the case of usb
> disks created with usb-creator or mobile images.
>
> Unfortunate as it is, the dialog is necessary as we cannot reread the
> partition table of disks with mounted partitions. The buttons in the UI
> in bzr trunk are "Yes" and "No" with translations taken from GTK. They
> behave just as you would expect, "No" means that the install will
> proceed without being able to use the disks with mounted partitions as
> an install target, "Yes" tries to unmount them.

If I read this correctly, you've fixed the "buttons don't do what I expect"
bug, but the dialog is still there. Shall I file a separate bug about that?

I don't see why this should be unavoidable: we don't need to reread the
partition table of the installation media, as we're not changing it.

--
 - mdz

Evan (ev) wrote :

Sure, please feel free to file a separate bug. I have in fact fixed the "buttons don't do what I expect" aspect of this report.

I think we need to go back to excluding the disk /cdrom is mounted from in addition to this new check for mounted partitions. That is, we should automatically exclude the disk that /cdrom is mounted from, then run the check for mounted partitions on whatever disks are left.

Colin, what do you think?

Colin Watson (cjwatson) wrote :

I agree that Matt's request for the dialog to go away should be a separate bug. The original reporter of this bug did not raise the presence of the dialog as a problem.

When /cdrom is mounted from a physically-read-only device or something that supports the CD capability ioctl (of course, a real CD-ROM will be both), it's already excluded. Therefore the remaining interesting cases are:

  * CD contents written to the entirety of a writeable medium and used as the installation medium (common case: usb-creator when told to use the whole disk)
  * CD contents written to one partition of a writeable medium and used as the installation medium (common case: recovery partition, such as that used by Dell)

In the former case, I agree that it is unnecessary and confusing to show a dialog. You can't use the installation medium as an installation target, and you're reasonably unlikely to want to.

However, the latter case is quite different. Consider the case where the CD contents have been written to a partition as a recovery image, which is then booted. Since the containing disk is considered busy in the kernel, we aren't going to be able to reread the partition table in the event that it is changed, which may cause problems; on the other hand, it may well be useful to use that disk as an installation target, particularly if the recovery image uses careful preseeding to ensure that it only uses existing partitions, so the disk should not simply be excluded. In the event that such an image is used without preseeding, it is more helpful to inform the user that the full range of partitioning operations are not available on this disk than it is to simply ignore the disk.

Perhaps an improved interface would be as follows:

  * If a filesystem that is not the installation medium is mounted from a disk that would otherwise be a candidate for partitioning, then issue a warning as we do today.
  * If the installation medium is mounted from a disk that would otherwise be a candidate for partitioning, and it occupies the whole disk (i.e. either it fills the entire device, or it occupies the only partition on the device and there is no more than a trivial amount (say, 16MB) of unpartitioned space available), then silently exclude that disk.
  * If the installation medium is mounted from a disk that would otherwise be a candidate for partitioning, and it does not occupy the whole disk as defined above, then the disk may be useful for partitioning but should be considered "locked": only changes that do not modify the partition table should be allowed.

partman-base/lib/base.sh:partman_lock_unit() is approximately the interface we'd want to use to implement the last point; this is used by partman-crypto and partman-lvm. However, it isn't quite perfect, because it locks all partitions on the device against *any* changes, not just ones that would modify the partition table. We should look into this in a bit more detail when addressing this new bug.

Matt Zimmerman (mdz) wrote :

I've filed bug 347916 about the fact that the dialog appears in the case where the partition is the installation medium.

Matt Zimmerman (mdz) on 2009-03-25
tags: added: ubuntu-unr
Colin Watson (cjwatson) wrote :

We'll need to release-note this for beta.

Colin Watson (cjwatson) wrote :

Errata text added for beta:

 * If any filesystems are mounted when starting the desktop CD installer, then a dialog labelled "Unmount partitions that are in use?" will be presented. Unfortunately, the buttons on this dialog box are poorly named: "Continue" attempts to unmount filesystems and then repeats, which will often just display the same dialog box again, while "Go Back" ignores this condition and continues. This will be corrected for the final release. Bug:346589

Changed in ubuntu-release-notes:
assignee: nobody → cjwatson
status: New → Fix Released
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :
Download full text (3.6 KiB)

This bug was fixed in the package ubiquity - 1.12.0

---------------
ubiquity (1.12.0) jaunty; urgency=low

  [ Colin Watson ]
  * Update for new message context system in GTK+ 2.15.1, and update
    imported translations from gtk+2.0 2.16.0-1ubuntu2.
  * Stop setting message attribute in InstallStepError; it isn't used and it
    generates a deprecation warning with Python 2.6. Similarly, rename
    PartedServerError's message attribute to parted_error.
  * Always set auto-login for OEM installations.
  * KDE frontend:
    - Hide auto-login and require-password radio buttons for OEM
      installations.
  * Remove reimplementation of gdm and kdm auto-login support for OEM
    installations, since user-setup handles this now and the duplication
    causes oem-config to be unable to undo autologin (LP: #347900).
  * Fix ubiquity/install_bootloader handling (LP: #348660):
    - Check the seen flag rather its value when deciding whether to override
      it with the UI's value.
    - Outside automatic mode, default the UI's "Install boot loader"
      question to the value of ubiquity/install_bootloader.
  * Offer "Yes" and "No" choices for user-setup/password-weak (LP: #349173).
  * Depend on grub | grub-pc, and don't remove grub-pc until after
    grub-installer has had the chance to decide whether it wants to use it
    (LP: #349835).
  * Add a compatibility wrapper for update-dev to ensure that it never
    attempts to call 'udevadm trigger', which isn't necessary in ubiquity
    and can cause problems (LP: #349937).
  * Permit dmraid-style /dev/mapper/* device names in advanced boot loader
    selector, as well as disk and partition numbers over 9 (LP: #342354).
  * Remove /target/var/lib/apt-xapian-index per Michael Vogt, since it needs
    to be rebuilt based on the installed system's sources.list, and apt's
    cron.daily script and/or synaptic will do this.
  * Preserve ordering of automatic partitioning choices when replacing them
    with our customised strings (LP: #351547).
  * Update translations from Launchpad.
  * Automatic update of included source packages: apt-setup 1:0.37ubuntu11,
    base-installer 1.98ubuntu4, console-setup 1.28ubuntu7, grub-installer
    1.36ubuntu5, hw-detect 1.71ubuntu6, partman-base 129ubuntu4,
    partman-target 58ubuntu6.

  [ Evan Dandrea ]
  * Make the partman/unmount_active dialog a yes or no question
    (LP: #346589).
  * Sort the list of regions on the timezone page (LP: #344334).
  * Merge Roman's city placement code into the GTK frontend.
  * Work in bytes rather than percentages in the partition bar code
    (LP: #336203).
  * Fix partition bar slider (for resizing) code by adding correct
    calculations for bounds checking and slider positioning.
  * Properly encode data from os-prober (LP: #345573).
  * Make sure that the before and after partitioning bars use the same
    colors for the same partitions (LP: #289324).
  * Fix the placement of the partition bars in scrolled windows when
    necessary.
  * Don't let the partition bars eat up any extra space.
  * Move selecting a disk from radio buttons to a drop down box on the
    automatic partitioning page. This saves a lot of space when...

Read more...

Changed in ubiquity:
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
pableu (ps-pableu) wrote :

I find the button labels (Yes/No) somewhat unhelpful and non-descriptive of what they do. You have to read through the whole paragraph of text to find out what "Yes" and "No" means.

How about calling the buttons "Continue without unmounting" and "Unmount". Or "Don't Unmount", "Unmount". Or "Keep mounted", "Unmount".

This is also what the GNOME HIG recommends: http://library.gnome.org/devel/hig-book/stable/windows-alert.html.en#alert-button-order

tags: added: iso-testing
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