Linux Mint: live installer ubiquity not resizable

Some days ago I installed Ubuntu, where the live installer is called ubquity like it is in Linux Mint. Compared to Mint the running installer looks quite different due to some distribution dependent resources – and sources.

Today I installed Mint 19.2 Cinnamon „Tina“ and was surprised that the installer window¬† is not resizable but still fixed while there is absolutely no need to do so, and in Ubuntu the installer is resizable.

The specific part of source file in Mint can be found here:
https://github.com/linuxmint/ubiquity/blob/master/ubiquity/frontend/gtk_ui.py#L952

# FIXME shrink the window horizontally instead of locking the window
# size.
self.live_installer.set_resizable(False)

Simply changing the uncommented line to

self.live_installer.set_resizable(1)

will make the complete installing process resizable. As TRUE is not defined in the python module the absolute value 1 has to be used here.

And what is this good for?

As for smaller resolutions there is the „ALT-mouseclick-drag“ hint in the installation description, making the dialogue resizable would make this obsolete and more transparant for normal users.

The main reason I really prefer a resizable installer is the hard disk setup part of the installation for a better overview. If you can’t see all partitions all together – especially when adding new ones – you always are at risk to install something where you did not want to. Imagine you are preparing a bootable flash stick with a system for special purposes on you every day computer (e.g. „only for online banking“, an OS presentation stick, a set of system for a classroom or what else). You have to boot it with a live medium, have several hard disk partitions and an additional device to install upon. The device names may be /dev/sda1, /dev/sdb1-/dev/sdbx and /dev/sdc1 then – but it also may be sdc1, sda1-sdax, sdb2 instead.

So every time before I start a Mint install process I change „resizable(FALSE)“ to „resizable(1)“ by editing the py-file with

sudo xed /usr/lib/ubiquity/ubiquity/frontend/gtk_ui.py

and I’m satisfied.

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