Debian 12 “Bookworm” is now under its soft freeze while out this weekend is the second alpha release for the Debian Installer.
Debian Installer Bookworm Alpha 2 is notable in that it has incorporated changes stemming from the recent general resolution around non-free firmware handling. Given today’s reality around firmware requirements for enabling open-source driver support with many new devices, CPU microcode updates needed for security, etc, Debian has updated its non-free firmware handling position to make it easier to load the non-free firmware from the installer.
Debian Installer Bookworm Alpha 2 has official images now with firmware packages both from the main and non-free-firmware archives and the necessary metadata for proper handling by the installer.
The updated Debian Installer for its AMD64 images will now boot on AMD64 systems with 32-bit UEFI firmware, dropped support for the win32-loader, updated to make use of the new Debian 12 “Bookworm” artwork/theme, switched to using the Linux 6.1 LTS kernel, various firmware handling improvements, enabling EFI Zboot support on ARM64, and various other updates.
More details on today’s second alpha update via the debian-boot announcement.