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[alpine-devel] Can Alpine be built with glibc and mdev?

Walter Dnes
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  No, I'm not proposing a fork of Alpine.  There are a bunch of unhappy
people on the Gentoo-Users list, over the fact that the lead developer
for udev wants to put a whole bunch of userspace stuff into the boot
process, which forces either merging /usr into the / physical volume, or
else booting with initramfs, which is more stuff to go wrong, and very
painful to debug when it does go wrong.  The udev lead developer is a
Redhat employee.  The attitude is summarized very well at...
http://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Software/systemd/separate-usr-is-broken?highlight=%28%5C/usr%29
where the poster says, and I quote...

> On my fresh Fedora 15 install that's 23 obvious cases.

  Just because he uses big bloated Redhat doesn't mean everybody else
wants to.

  I understand that standard Alpine uses uclibc, which breaks
proprietary stuff like Nvidia video drivers and Flash, and who knows
what else.  Like I said, I'm not looking to fork Alpine, but I wonder if
it can be used as a template for Gentoo with mdev instead of udev.  I am
not a programmer, but I can...

./configure --with-various-options && make && install

  Using Gentoo, I've become familiar with "make menuconfig", so I'm
willing to take a crack at it.  If it's promising, I'll submit it to the
Gentoo dev list as a potential way around the udev mess.

-- 
Walter Dnes <waltdnes@waltdnes.org>


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Natanael Copa
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On Sun, 2 Oct 2011 23:24:14 -0400
"Walter Dnes" <waltdnes@waltdnes.org> wrote:

>   No, I'm not proposing a fork of Alpine.  There are a bunch of
> unhappy people on the Gentoo-Users list, over the fact that the lead
> developer for udev wants to put a whole bunch of userspace stuff into
> the boot process, which forces either merging /usr into the /
> physical volume, or else booting with initramfs, which is more stuff
> to go wrong, and very painful to debug when it does go wrong.  The
> udev lead developer is a Redhat employee.  The attitude is summarized
> very well at...
> http://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Software/systemd/separate-usr-is-broken?highlight=%28%5C/usr%29
> where the poster says, and I quote...
> 
> > On my fresh Fedora 15 install that's 23 obvious cases.
> 
>   Just because he uses big bloated Redhat doesn't mean everybody else
> wants to.
> 
>   I understand that standard Alpine uses uclibc, which breaks
> proprietary stuff like Nvidia video drivers and Flash, and who knows
> what else.  Like I said, I'm not looking to fork Alpine, but I wonder
> if it can be used as a template for Gentoo with mdev instead of
> udev.

It is possible to build alpine with glibc/eglibc and I dont think that
would be too hard to do. We do not have the manpower to maintain both
eglibc and uclibc atm.

Alpine Linux and Gentoo have openrc in common so you could probably just
use the Alpine Linux's mdev scripts.

I would say that the main problem you have with a non-udev gentoo is
that xorg and much desktop stuff depends on libudev to work properly,
so an Alpine Linux desktop uses udev as well.

>  I am not a programmer, but I can...
> 
> ./configure --with-various-options && make && install
> 
>   Using Gentoo, I've become familiar with "make menuconfig", so I'm
> willing to take a crack at it.  If it's promising, I'll submit it to
> the Gentoo dev list as a potential way around the udev mess.

I don't really see how Alpine Linux would help you around the udev
mess.

-nc


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Florian Heigl
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Hey,

tell the guy my greetings.
I always wondered why the "legacy" commercial unixes do multithreaded
backgrounded device init, and (some!) Linux devs actually think it's a
smart thing to fork a few hundred or thousand shell
scripts to identify system hardware.

2011/10/3 Walter Dnes <waltdnes@waltdnes.org>:
>  No, I'm not proposing a fork of Alpine.  There are a bunch of unhappy
> people on the Gentoo-Users list, over the fact that the lead developer
> for udev wants to put a whole bunch of userspace stuff into the boot
> process, which forces either merging /usr into the / physical volume, or
> else booting with initramfs, which is more stuff to go wrong, and very
> painful to debug when it does go wrong.  The udev lead developer is a
> Redhat employee.  The attitude is summarized very well at...
> http://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Software/systemd/separate-usr-is-broken?highlight=%28%5C/usr%29
> where the poster says, and I quote...
>
>> On my fresh Fedora 15 install that's 23 obvious cases.
>
>  Just because he uses big bloated Redhat doesn't mean everybody else
> wants to.

As to Gentoo, maybe you just need someone else for the job, instead of
a new distro.

-- 
the purpose of libvirt is to provide an abstraction layer hiding all
xen features added since 2006 until they were finally understood and
copied by the kvm devs.


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Walter Dnes
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On Mon, Oct 03, 2011 at 10:08:43AM +0200, Florian Heigl wrote

> As to Gentoo, maybe you just need someone else for the job, instead of
> a new distro.

  I don't think the udev train can be stopped or forked.  It's part of
the same mentality that insists on systemd.  I'm not a pro, so I can't
give a good reason for or against systemd.  What I was hoping was to be
able to use mdev instead of udev.

-- 
Walter Dnes <waltdnes@waltdnes.org>


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Walter Dnes
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On Mon, Oct 03, 2011 at 08:16:20AM +0200, Natanael Copa wrote

> I would say that the main problem you have with a non-udev gentoo is
> that xorg and much desktop stuff depends on libudev to work properly,
> so an Alpine Linux desktop uses udev as well.

  What's wrong with xorg.conf?  And as for "desktops", are you referring
to garbage like KDE-Mail which requires an SQL database?  I'm neutral re
KDE and GNOME... the pox on both their houses.  I don't run desktops, I
run applications.  ICEWM is more than sufficient.

  If somebody wants to load up their machine with a bunch of stuff that
requires initramfs, or a /usr on the same physical drive as /, no
problem for me.  However, if the lead developer for a necessary linux
subsystem tweaks it so that it *DEMANDS* either /initramfs or a sinle
huge C:\ drive *FOR ALL USERS OF ALL DISTROS*, I get unhappy.  That's
why I'm looking for solutions that avoid this.

  Reading the Alpine wiki, I see that "(previous versions of Alpine were
based on Gentoo)".  It would be ironic if I could convince the Gentoo
devs to base the next version of Gentoo on Alpine.

-- 
Walter Dnes <waltdnes@waltdnes.org>


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Natanael Copa
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On Mon, 3 Oct 2011 22:11:32 -0400
"Walter Dnes" <waltdnes@waltdnes.org> wrote:

> On Mon, Oct 03, 2011 at 08:16:20AM +0200, Natanael Copa wrote
> 
> > I would say that the main problem you have with a non-udev gentoo is
> > that xorg and much desktop stuff depends on libudev to work
> > properly, so an Alpine Linux desktop uses udev as well.
> 
>   What's wrong with xorg.conf?

Nothing really. But i think you need libudev to get hotplugging of
mouse/keyboard and screens to work properly.

>  And as for "desktops", are you
> referring to garbage like KDE-Mail which requires an SQL database?
> I'm neutral re KDE and GNOME... the pox on both their houses.  I
> don't run desktops, I run applications.  ICEWM is more than
> sufficient.

With "desktop" I mean xorg + any window manager. What I mean is that I
think that hotplugging usbdisks with udev will show a nice icon in
thunar or whatever filemanager you use. Without udev you will probably
need open a terminal and manually mount your usb disk.

What I'm trying to say is that i think mdev will work, but some features
that you expect from a modern linux system (specifically
hotplugging stuff) will not work.

It is not that hard to download alpine and test what works and what
does not work.

>   If somebody wants to load up their machine with a bunch of stuff
> that requires initramfs, or a /usr on the same physical drive as /, no
> problem for me.  However, if the lead developer for a necessary linux
> subsystem tweaks it so that it *DEMANDS* either /initramfs or a sinle
> huge C:\ drive *FOR ALL USERS OF ALL DISTROS*, I get unhappy.  That's
> why I'm looking for solutions that avoid this.

I fully understand this and I agree.
 
>   Reading the Alpine wiki, I see that "(previous versions of Alpine
> were based on Gentoo)".  It would be ironic if I could convince the
> Gentoo devs to base the next version of Gentoo on Alpine.

Newer alpine uses not emerge and portage. It uses its own build system,
aports. You don't have USEFLAGS and its a binary distro.

But since Alpine Linux uses openrc, you could try use the patches for
openrc and busybox-initscripts and try apply that on your gentoo.
Shouldn't be too hard.

-nc


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Walter Dnes
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On Tue, Oct 04, 2011 at 01:39:06PM +0200, Natanael Copa wrote

> With "desktop" I mean xorg + any window manager. What I mean is that I
> think that hotplugging usbdisks with udev will show a nice icon in
> thunar or whatever filemanager you use. Without udev you will probably
> need open a terminal and manually mount your usb disk.
> 
> What I'm trying to say is that i think mdev will work, but some features
> that you expect from a modern linux system (specifically
> hotplugging stuff) will not work.

  I don't use automounting.  At times it seems more trouble than it's
worth.  Out of sheer curiousity, if you switch to TTY12 (or equivalant
"tail -f /var/log/messages" and attach a USB key do you see a bunch of
output?

  I'll work on loading Alpine on a spare machine this weekend, and
experiment.

-- 
Walter Dnes <waltdnes@waltdnes.org>


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