Thanks for a Nice New Haiku Release

I enjoyed looking over Haiku and left some comments in an earlier post. I changed my time - not my mind. Haiku is not yet ready for me. When I can go in and play a FLAC music file and an OGG and MKV video simply by double-clicking on it in Tracker, as well as have a python file open in an IDE (of any sort), ready to fail to compile my program, then I will have another look.

I can even live with the performance hit, yet I feel that if Haiku is slower than Linux, to any great degree, it will go hard on it as a desktop replacement.

What is great about it is the simplicity of the boot loader. Still, the documentation for at least the Linux part of it could be improved, mainly because you recommend the dd command, which is the most dangerous command in Linux, as the first thing someone needs to do. I used dd quite a bit and even I felt uncomfortable following the instructions, as the umount failed and so on …

What I did, and you could probably copy this into the documentation, is this:

  1. Plug in the usb stick and watch Linux file manager open up all of the partitions on the stick

  2. Close all of the windows it just opened.

  3. Use Gparted (graphical partition manager) - start it after loading the usb stick or you will need to reload…
    a) Select each partition in turn and chose the “unmount” option from the menu

  4. Close Gparted, open Nemo (or other file manager) as root and browse to the folder you stored the .iso file (note - the documentation says .image file, and doesn’t mention unzip - some users would dd the zip file … best to tell them to unzip it first)

  5. Right mouse click on the background of the folder and open a terminal window. Path is now set to folder containing the .iso file. (note - I renamed the iso to haiku.iso to make the dd easier and safer - you could do that too, if you liked)

  6. run the lsblk command - this is best to see the devices and partitions you have. If you are like me, you have an sdc1, sdc2 and sdc3. These all get wiped using the following dd command !!WATCH OUT!!:

dd if=haiku.iso of=/dev/sdX

where X is the number of your device, in my example it would be sd1

I once wiped every hard disk partition on my system with a single miss-spelled command as root - I had only heard about things like that yet had not before experienced it - take care with dd.

Thanks again a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all :slight_smile:


Just a quick correction - it seems Haiku does play FLAC files. I tried it on some wav files too. My mistake.

I had a really hard time with the package manager - the performance was abysmal - and some kind of loop with the keyboard if you hold down a key by accident. I had to close it repeatedly and got nowhere. Too many packages. It needs a filter of some kind that is different from what it has. Whatever underlying database technology it uses has to go - it is just not up to it. Or limit the information displayed to a subset. I feel flat files would work better than this. Then click on a line to see the details, not every time you move the record pointer over it with the keyboard. It’s really an off-putter, and something I will be looking into at Funtoo, comparing how their system performs. They have many thousands of records, gentoo even more. It has to be very quick and easy this, so the tool becomes transparent and you can focus on the data you are looking for. I’m sure this tool was very nice with a hundred packages. Not any more. And nobody’s fault - it’s typical for software development - it’s a learning curve and a growing challenge. Best wishes to the author.

I did see that Gimp is inactive development. That’s good and will require GTK+. It will suit my work better when that is available.

The haiku depot application for finding and installing software is slow and in my opinion not really ready for prime time. It’s clearly most of the way there, but it’s probably one of the least usable applications in the default install and does give a bit of a poor first impression, especially as it might be the first application a new user might use.

The underlying package management system is really fast. So it is better used from the command line, using the pkgman program. Though there doesn’t seem to be documentation for it anywhere that I can see, beyond the usage output of the program itself.

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Could you elaborate which part of HaikuDepot is being slow? A few weeks ago @jua improved its performance a lot.

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Sure. The database part loading the lines to the screen. And then moving through the lines with the cursor.

Ah, I didn’t realise that - great news. So maybe it is better now.

Don’t hold your breath :tired_face: it is still really slow, the damn thing stays unresponsive for 3 to 4 minutes just by typing a query while getting info from the server, i know also that my slow connection plays a role in that but 4 minutes is just unbearable, so i stopped using it for now, using just pkgman

Ah, it’s a known bug then:

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At least, my experience with HaikuDepot is the following:

If I try to search for a package typing where still is refreshing the package list, the app enter in some loop that could last a few minutes untill became responsive again. However, if I wait untill the package list is populated, the search works well.

Maybe, until the app could be improved, could be a good idea to disable the search box, and show a little message like “updating package list… please wait” or something like that.

Well, Humdinger explaines it quite well in his ticket, it happens everytime you install a package too even if you don’t close the app at all.

Ho ho ho. Bug fixed in hrev51710.


yeah, dd really shouldn’t be the first suggestion made about that sort of thing. there’s an article with some other options, maybe we should link to that or put up something similar or at least, point to a different and less easily destructive tool. i’ve spoken to too many folks, even decades-seasoned linux and unix veterans, who’ve slipped up and erased a system disk with dd.

Or you create your own tutorial about, descript and tested on haiku. You can post it here or send to the besly knowledge base.


Deactivating all input metodes will fix it. So people see that nothing can be clicked or typed in.

The problem is not the tool. Whatever fancy graphical user interface we add above it, eventually you do need to erase a whole disk with the Haiku install image, and you have to make sure you pick the right disk. I think using dd here is in fact a good idea. It screams “watch your step” to users, because they know it’s a dangerous tool.

When we get to shipping beta1, there will be an option to buy CDs from somewhere (either the cafepress store, or Haiku, inc will handle that directly, or something else). This way there is no need to use dd. You can of course also burn a CD yourself if you feel uncomfortable with dd. But if you decide to use an USB drive, you have to erase a whole disk, and dd is the appropriate tool for that.

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A simple GUI tool that sits above dd and only lets you select disks to write to from under /dev/disk/usb/ would reduce the risk for less knowledgeable users.

Seems like that would be a nice, self-contained task for GCI maybe?


If you are already running Haiku, you can use Installer and do not need to use dd.
If you are running Linux, there is no /dev/disk/usb, only /dev/sd*. So you are on your own guessing which is which and things are dangerous. Remind me why I don’t like Linux, please? :slight_smile:


Ha, yes, I realised after posting that new users aren’t likely to dd the image from Haiku…

Maybe local HUGs could organise install parties if the community grows a bit.


There is a GUI tool in most linux distros called IIRC usb cd creator or something close which I think works fine with haiku anyboots?

Also, could haiku USB disks be sold with beta 1 installed? Most laptops and many desktops don’t have optical drives any more these days…

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There are some neat tools for making Haiku USB Stick from Windows. On Linux I haven’t tried apps like Etcher or dd front-ends. Simple GUI tools are just convenience, there’s no need to make it harder than it is.