Release notes

This document describes major installer-related changes in Fedora releases.

Fedora 36

General changes

The help support is unified

The help support on RHEL and Fedora uses new mapping files with a unified format. The mappings files are located in the root of the help directory. For example for RHEL, they are expected to be at:

/usr/share/anaconda/help/rhel/anaconda-gui.json
/usr/share/anaconda/help/rhel/anaconda-tui.json

The mapping files contain data about the available help content. The UI screens are identified by a unique screen id returned by the get_screen_id method, for example installation-summary. The help content is defined by a relative path to a help file and (optionally) a name of an anchor in the help file.

For example:

{
  "_comment_": [
    "This is a comment",
    "with multiple lines."
  ],
  "_default_": {
    "file": "default-help.xml",
    "anchor": "",
  },
  "installation-summary": {
    "file": "anaconda-help.xml",
    "anchor": "",
  },
  "user-configuration": {
    "file": "anaconda-help.xml",
    "anchor": "creating-a-user-account"
  }
}

The default_help_pages configuration option is removed. The helpFile attribute is removed from the UI classes. See the pull request for more info.

Changes in the graphical interface

Users are administrators by default

In the User spoke, the “Make this user administrator” checkbox is now checked by default. This improves installation experience for users who do not know and need to rely on the default values to guide them. See the Users are admins by default change.

Keyboard configuration is disabled on Live media with Wayland

The keyboard switching in the Anaconda installer on the Live media did not behave as expected on Wayland based environments (#2016613). When users changed the keyboard layout configuration that configuration was reflected in the Live environment. However, if users pressed modifier keys (CTRL or SHIFT) the keyboard specified by the Anaconda installer was changed back for the Live environment. That is the result of how the Wayland protocol handles keyboard layout.

To avoid this unexpected behavior Anaconda will no longer control keyboard layout configuration of the Live systems on Wayland Live environment. The keyboard configuration set by Anaconda on the Live environment will be reflected only to the installed system. This means that users have to pay attention that their passwords are written by the correct layout in the installer running inside the Live environment to be able to use the password in the system after installation.

Changes in the kickstart support

The %anaconda section is removed

The support for the deprecated %anaconda section is removed. Use Anaconda configuration files instead.

ANA_INSTALL_PATH is deprecated

The ANA_INSTALL_PATH environment variable is deprecated. The support for this variable will be removed in future releases. Use the /mnt/sysroot path in your kickstart scripts instead. See the Installation mount points documentation.

Changes in Anaconda options

inst.nompath is deprecated

The inst.nompath boot option is deprecated. It has not been doing anything useful for some time already.

Changes in Anaconda configuration files

Saving Anaconda’s data to target system

Anaconda configuration file format now includes additional options to control what is saved to the target system.

The options are:

# Should we copy input kickstart to target system?
can_copy_input_kickstart = True

# Should we save kickstart equivalent to installation settings to the new system?
can_save_output_kickstart = True

# Should we save logs from the installation to the new system?
can_save_installation_logs = True

The default values above cause no change in behavior, the new options are only another way to configure the behavior.

Fedora 35

General changes

Limited support for braille devices

The Server image (boot.iso) now contains the brltty accessibility software. This means that some braille output devices can be automatically detected and used. This feature works only in text mode, started with the inst.text boot option. See the bug.

Visible warnings in initrd

Installation shows critical warnings raised in Dracut/initrd again when Anaconda is starting or when Dracut starts to timeout. This should help users to resolve installation issues by avoiding that the important message was scrolled out too fast. See the bug.

Changes in the graphical interface

New look of the NTP server dialog

The NTP server dialog has been redesigned. The new look uses more traditional approach to management of lists (such as in hexchat). See the pull request.

  • The set of controls to add a new server is no longer present. Instead, a “blank” new server is added by clicking an “add” button. The details can be filled in by editing the server in the list, as was already possible.

  • The method to remove a server is now more intuitive. Users can simply click the “remove” button and the server is instantly removed from the list. Previously, users had to uncheck the “Use” checkbox for the server in the list and confirm the dialog.

New look of the root configuration screen

The root configuration screen has been redesigned and is no longer ambiguous. All root account options are visible only if root account is enabled. The new layout also contains text to let users understand their choices. See the pull request.

Changes in the text interface

The packaging log in tmux tabs

Add a new tab to the tmux session starting the Anaconda installer. This new tab will follows the /tmp/packaging.log log file. This change should make it easier for users to spot software installation errors. See the pull request.

Changes in Anaconda configuration files

Replacement of product configuration files

The support for the product configuration files was removed and replaced with profiles. See the Fedora change and the documentation.

Each profile can be identified by a unique id and it can define additional options for the automated profile detection. The profile will be chosen based on the inst.profile boot option, or based on the ID and VARIANT_ID options of the os-release files. The profile configuration files are located in the /etc/anaconda/profile.d/ directory.

The inst.product and inst.variant boot options are deprecated.

Options for Anaconda DBus module activation

We have introduced new configuration options that affect the detection and activation of the Anaconda DBus modules. Use the activatable_modules option to specify Anaconda DBus modules that can be activated. Use the forbidden_modules option to specify modules that are not allowed to run. Use the optional_modules to specify modules that can fail to run without aborting the installation.

The DBus modules can be specified by a DBus name or by a prefix of the name that ends with an asterisk. For example:

org.fedoraproject.Anaconda.Modules.Timezone
org.fedoraproject.Anaconda.Addons.*

The addons_enabled and kickstart_modules options are deprecated and will be removed in the future.

See the pull request.