I want to try Debian for the 1st time and I wanted to download the full DVD so I went to my local Debian mirror and what I see are 3 DVDs and 2 update DVDs.

what is each? Do I need more than just the 1st DVD?

  • @josten what are the rest though?
    – nass
    Jun 17 '14 at 19:48
  • 1
    It's faster to keep the install minimal and add/update via internet at later time, since you have to download. Often you have to update even the package on the dvd. All different it is if you need to install on a computer without internet.
    – Hastur
    Jun 17 '14 at 20:02

From Debian's website:

There are lots of files here! Do I need all of them?

In most cases it is not necessary to download and use all of these images to be able to install Debian on your computer. Debian comes with a massive set of software packages, hence why it takes so many disks for a complete set. Most typical users only need a small subset of those software packages.

Initially, you will only need to download and use the first image of a set (labelled as debian-something-1 to be able to start the Debian installer and set up Debian on your computer. If there are more images available here (labelled debian-something-2, debian-something-3, etc.), they contain the extra packages that can be installed on a Debian system (as mentioned previously). They will not be bootable and are entirely optional. If you have a fast Internet connection, you're most likely better off installing any desired extra packages directly from the Debian mirrors on the Internet instead of by using these extra images.

  • Can you please expand this answer by explaining the difference between ...DVD-1.iso and ...DVD-2.iso in Debian 8.5 etc. Aug 31 '16 at 8:27
  • 3
    @LéoLéopoldHertz준영 - beyond basic images (netinstall, cd-1) exactly what ends up on what disk (DVD-1 vs DVD-1, or CD-3 vs CD-7) is based on the results of the popularity contest package/system. Software that is added most often is on DVD-1, etc. with the least used software on the last disk
    – ivanivan
    Apr 17 '18 at 11:59

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