Hi Robert :-)

>> Base size,
>> Base + sources size,
>> Full size,
>> Full + sources size,
>> All package sizes (custom advanced mode)
>> All packages + sources sizes,

> Start with Base.

Actually I would suggest to never install complete categories
WITH SOURCE. Just install sources of individual packages when
needed and simply keep the rest stored in their zip packages.

To find out BASE size, I suggest to compute required size
based on the assumption that each cluster is 32 kB large.

You can either precompute that for a fixed distro, or let
the installer compute things based on actual zip content.
Of course the latter means more reads from the installer
medium - slow, unless you have a nice cache active.

>> Temp storage requirements to expand largest installing package,

> Difficult.

Just add a fixed margin for such stuff?

>> Temp storage for custom install lists,
>> Temp storage for custom autoexec and config file creation,

> Shouldn't take much.

I agree. Use fixed margin.

>> Size needed for copy style backup,
>> Size needed for advanced zip backup,

> Means what?

Probably means size of the current DOS directory which
can be backed up during install by either xcopy or zip.
Should be answered by something like "du \freedos" ;-)

>> Size needed for MBR backup,
>> Size needed for config file backup,

> Shouldn't take much.

I agree. As above.

>> Size of packages to be removed and upgraded,

> It's just "-", not "+" then. ;-)

Just ignore all remove / upgrade steps for now: This
gives you a most pessimistic estimate. When there is
still enough disk space, be happy. When not, show a
warning and allow the user to proceed at own risk :-)

This is still a lot better than letting users create
FAT12 drives in the blind assumption that DOS is tiny
and then be surprised by failed attempts to install
"all packages" into them ;-)

> Of course, uncompressed ZIP length should be calculated during ISO
> build at the latest, but not at runtime of the installer.

See above - both is possible. Do not forget to stay
on the safe side by assuming large clusters on the
drive where DOS will be installed. Or pre-compute
for various cluster sizes and then pick the value
which matches the actual target drive.

> But what else is a computer for if not crunching numbers?

Exactly :-)


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