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hpr3588 :: Linux Inlaws S01E55: Get yer boots on for a fresh look at init systems

Martin and Chris discuss what happens when you turn on a computer (preferably running Linux)

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Hosted by monochromec on 2022-05-04 is flagged as Explicit and is released under a CC-BY-SA license.
init, SysVInit, Upstart, systemd, GRUB, Unix philosophy, Hello Magazine. 3.
The show is available on the Internet Archive at:

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Duration: 00:46:19

Linux Inlaws.

This is Linux Inlaws, a series on free and open source software, black humour, the revolution and freedom in general (this includes ideas and software) and generally having fun.

In this episode, Martin and Chris discuss init systems and Chris outs himself as a systemd fan boy (Devuan followers take note :-). Even Linux and other FLOSS OS geeks not interested in what happens when you flick the power switch on a computer may find this episode (vaguely) interesting as some light is also shed on the philosophy of the different system architectures and their history (Ever wanted to know what an /360 IPL really is? Then stay tuned...). Disclosure: The following text may resort to regular expressions to keep things concise and simple. Some of the PCRE-challenged readers may take offence - you have been warned.



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Comment #1 posted on 2022-05-04 17:42:53 by cybergrue

Unix Philosophy

Your understanding of the Unix Philosophy is missing what many consider its most important caveat. As summarized by Salus, Unix is a collection of programs that each do one thing only and do it well. System D is a grab-bag of lots of functionality and it does not do any of them particularly well, hence why people say that System D is not in the Unix Philosophy.

I agree that the old style Init system had a lot of issues and needed to be replaces, however, I do not agree that System D is the solution. I would have preferred a properly designed, layered and modular init system instead of the all-in-one solution of System D. ie. a bare metal server used to run containers would have the same root level module but different application specific modules as a GUI based tablet. system D was designed for GUI based systems, and is overkill/inappropriate for back-end servers running docker.

Anyways, another good show, and stop selling yourself short, I think you are up to a double-digit number of listeners by now!

Comment #2 posted on 2022-05-05 00:22:41 by Clinton Roy

Debian systemd

I'm writing this comment hot, so you may well cover this in the rest of the show.

I think the major drama with debian and systemd is the murged /usr stuff, which, depending on who you ask is either an existential crises, or a mild wrinkle in package management.

Debian has not switched over to systemd resolved yet either, not looking forward to that :)

Comment #3 posted on 2022-05-19 16:47:36 by brian-in-ohio

out of your depth

Its sad that you call your show as a call back to Linux in Laws. Fabian Scherschel seemed to do a lot of research on the topics he discussed (and was funnier), that you didn't know what grub stand for shows your lack of preperation. You could have at least listened to Dann Washko's great series on bootloaders done on hpr and been better off.

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