At the miniDebConfUK in Cambridge, November 2015, there was a vmdebootstrap sprint vmdebootstrap is written in python and the sprint built on the changes I made during DebConf15. The primary aim was to split out the code from a single python script and create modules which would be useful to other tools and make the source code itself easier to follow. Whilst doing this, I worked with Steve McIntyre to implement UEFI support into vmdebootstrap. This version reached experimental shortly after DebConf15.

At the sprint, the squashfs support in vmdebootstrap was improved to be more useful in the preparation of live images rather than simply using mksquashfs as a compression algorithm for the entire image. I also improved and extended the documentation for vmdebootstrap. vmdebootstrap is now extensible and modular.

Iain Learmonth used this new modular support in the development of the live-build-ng wrapper which uses vmdebootstrap, live-boot and live-config to replace the role of live-build in the generation of official Debian live images by the debian-cd team. Iain Learmonth demonstrated that the new support in vmdebootstrap can be used to create working live images, including adding support for live images on any architecture supporting the Linux kernel in Debian and adding support for not only Grub but UEFI as well. A UEFI grub live image built by live-build-ng was demonstrated after only two days work on the vmdebootstrap base, wrapping support from live-boot and live-config with customisation for UEFI and grub config.

vmdebootstrap and live-build-ng have been explicitly designed within the debian-cd team to remove the need to run live-build to create official Debian live images, replacing live-build with live-build-ng and the vmdebootstrap support. This brings working support for multiple architectures and UEFI to live images.

To support the new functionality, the vmdebootstrap and debian-cd team have long sought a test suite for vmdebootstrap and Lars Wirzenius implemented one during the vmdebootstrap sprint. We now have fast tests with a pre-commit hook and build tests which are best with a local mirror. The test suite uses cmdtest & yarn. This test suite will be used for all future changes - patches will not be accepted if the test suite fails and any substantially new code <b>must</b> provide working test cases. The fast tests can run without sudo, I expect to be able to sort out ci.debian.net testing for the fast tests too.

There is also an outline for testing vmdebootstrap builds in (localhost) LAVA using a lava-submit.py example.

All this work will arrive in unstable as vmdebootstrap 1.2 soon and is now in the master branch. The old codehelp/modules branch has been merged and removed.