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Author Topic: Knoppix - systemD free again!  (Read 2408 times)

Offline PDP-8

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Knoppix - systemD free again!
« on: January 31, 2021, 01:48:43 AM »
Just in case some haven't noticed - after a few years of dabbling with system-D, as of version 8.5, Knoppix has gone back to customized boot scripts and startups.  The latest "official" version is 8.6.1

Quite the task for a one-man team to get a franken-Debian mix of stable, testing, and experimental to work together - and then try to keep all the system-d tweaks out of the way..

Don't get me wrong - I love TC obviously, but have found Knoppix useful for compiling small things, exploring hardware to find a fix for TC in some cases, and "borrowing" things like fonts and other small items to pull into TC when they aren't available in the repo.

So sure, it's a large download ( >4gb - won't fit on fat32!), but its not intended to be upgraded in the usual manner anyway, so for some of my use cases, having all that on hand at the outset is ok.  Like demoing what Linux can do for some friends that lets say aren't meant to be Tiny-Core savvy. :)
« Last Edit: January 31, 2021, 01:50:24 AM by PDP-8 »
That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline jazzbiker

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2021, 04:08:20 AM »
Hi, PDP-8!

As I can understand, one of the hooks to hard-push systemd in every OS was hard-linking udev with systemd. What udev is used in the reborn Knoppix?

You can ask : why not  boot Knoppix and see with own eyes? You may not believe me, but Knoppix failed to start on my box!

Offline Juanito

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2021, 04:34:17 AM »
For a while lfs was extracting udev from the systemd source - now they are using eudev.

Offline PDP-8

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2021, 03:18:48 PM »
Yep - some hardware needs extra kernel bootcodes sometimes (like noapic, nolapic etc).

Did you use 8.6.1?  Reason I ask is that version 8.6 had a problem with the 32 bit kernel so that the .1 was introduced pretty quickly afterwards to fix that.

Was the iso saved to a filesystem that can handle files larger than 4gb, and not on something like fat32?  I ran into that by not being careful, and trying to burn an iso without looking at the md5 and realizing that the iso wasn't complete! :)

Now *there* is a limit I would suggest to Klaus is to keep the iso size LESS than 4gb just for that reason to avoid that "gotcha" for those like myself who save it to a filesystem that can't handle it.

(heh, have a soft spot for Knoppix since it was what I compiled the Terminus-font tcz with.)

Manpower - doing all this custom stuff brings up a point about trying to be system-d free:  it takes a lot of time and manpower to not run system-d especially in the desktop arena where DE's and other apps are being tied directly into it.

So other than reasons discussed about system-d ad-nauseum, the manpower to remain free may be limited in certain projects where they simply don't have time to be systemd free.

For example, I also like the GRML project, and wish it was systemd free, but limited developer resources may mean that releases would be very few and far between.  Just a guess on my part, not fact.

That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline PDP-8

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2021, 03:52:45 PM »
Back to Knoppix and system-d free:

Makes me wonder if instead of basing Knoppix on Debian, and the manpower that entails to keep system-d under control, if it would be wiser to leverage existing efforts, and base future releases of Knoppix on Devuan instead?

I'm not a developer so I don't know if that makes sense or not.  Likewise Dcore - would it be a benefit from a manpower standpoint to base upon Devuan instead of Ubuntu etc?  Dunno'..
That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline jazzbiker

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2021, 12:13:30 AM »
Hi, PDP-8!

If I am not mistaken it was exactly 8.6 and exactly on 32-bit system :) Based on Poulsbo chipset, which is on its own mind sometimes. I have no drives less than 8 Gb (except 128 Mb Transcend), so I definitely will try 8.61, Knoppix is the kind of milestone.
People are avoiding (trying to avoid?) systemd because it's all-in-one and is the kind of imprisoning, despite being just the tender one, remains imprisoning. Is far as I know, systemd sends its tentacles inside everything reachable, including bootloader. I have not enough knowledge to answer the question: "Is it possible modular design of systemd analogue?" The world divided into not-overlapping yes-systemd and no-systemd because You can not use some part, You are not free to do so :)
TinyCore excites with this extreme freedom, accessible for not-professionals. Thanks, TinyCore team!

Offline PDP-8

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2021, 01:33:11 AM »
Yeah, make sure it's 8.6.1, AND your filesystem that you download to can handle files >4gb in the first place!  Like ext2/3/4, ntfs (ugh) whatever before you do the burn.  I get it, but personally I'd put Knoppix on a diet for those who accidentally download to fat32 and exceed 4gb file limitations.  Maybe when I'm in charge. :)

Tip: don't be freaked out by all the menu choices once it's up and running.  Merely *hide* them instead, (rather than trying to uninstall stuff) , say the entire games category.  If using the default lxde environment, find the menu editor and click and choose which categories to display.  Logout to see the changes.  That alone will bring some sanity back.  Make a few other slight changes, say default appearance, toolbar sizes - general tidying up to your specs.

The use the flash-knoppix tool to burn a new stick with all your tidying up choices in place.

Do NOT, repeat do NOT do your typical debian apt update/upgrade or you'll break the franken-system.  Single updates like installing the latest sudo, or even FireFox-ESR are ok, but wholesale system upgrades, rather than just piecemeal little updates will lead to tears.  Heh, out of 4gb of stuff, I still need to load my favorite notes util, Xpad manually.

SystemD - Heh, to me it's not Unix, which was *never* meant for general consumption anyway, so marketing forces never guided it - gotta love the quirks.  Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie had enough of those marketing/engineering forces in 1969 after the whole Multics thing collapsed.  There's something to be learned here, if one takes a long-term look.

Maybe that's why we're running *nix look-alikes today, and not Multics, which to me has the same feel as what systemD is trying to encapsulate.  But I'm just a crazy gray-beard...

Anyway, another opinion:
http://unixsheikh.com/articles/systemd-isnt-safe-to-run-anywhere.html

In a strange twist, systemD distros are unix-lookalike-lookalikes now.


« Last Edit: February 01, 2021, 02:05:36 AM by PDP-8 »
That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline andyj

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2021, 03:57:05 AM »
Maybe there's a reason the longest running Linux distribution isn't using systemd. Dare to Slack.

Offline PDP-8

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2021, 06:08:45 AM »
Oh for sure.  Slackware is the one I'd run if for some reason one likes the BSD type infrastructure but be just over the gpl side of the fence.

But that's a true *nix.  SystemD works, but just don't call your distro part of the Linux family.  Call it what it is - or what it is becoming.  Multics++.  Any GE/Honeywell/Bull guy will recognize what's happening. :)



That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline andyj

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2021, 06:48:49 AM »
...if for some reason one likes the BSD type infrastructure but be just over the gpl side of the fence.

That seems a lot like what we have here, cuz it's not systemd and it's not SysV, and we have the equivalent of rc.local (/opt/boot*.sh) at the end.

Offline PDP-8

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2021, 07:01:18 PM »
The good thing is that although we've moved the deck-chairs around, it is still a case of doing one thing and doing it well for the most part.

That's what I was raised with when it came to computing.  It's a cultural thing I guess to "Think Unix" rather than "Think VMS or Pr1me or SystemD" or anything else.

To take it to the ultimate, when I compile busybox for myself, I leave out head and tail, and use simple awk shell replacements as a tribute to Brian Kernighan in my own way.  Leverage existing tools.  And never use cat -v.  :)

I guess that makes me a total freak....

Will I do something similar in later years in tribute to the ways of SystemD?  Not likely.
That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline PDP-8

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #11 on: February 02, 2021, 05:46:37 PM »
Oops - sorry to only mention Brian Kernighan in relation to my admiration of awk.  Alfred Aho and Peter Weinberger are also remembered every time I do a head / tail or other little-language type of operation with it.
That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline jazzbiker

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2021, 10:20:54 PM »
Hi, PDP-8!

Don't You know, was awk the very first language with associative arrays?

Offline PDP-8

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2021, 12:50:59 AM »
I don't really know, although some research says Snobol.

How about this recent interview with Brian Kernighan with his buddy Prof Brailsford at the University of Nottingham about associative arrays:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qTZJLJ3Gm6Q

The enthusiasm and down to earth relatability in 2017 is incredible.  If I was younger, I'd be in his classes in a heartbeat.

So can you imagine this same enthusiasm cruising the unix-room and halls of ATT back in the 70's?  I got a feeling he was probably responsible for talking a lot of people into using unix there.  Making them think it was *their* idea. :)
That's a UNIX book! - cool  -- Garth

Offline jazzbiker

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Re: Knoppix - systemD free again!
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2021, 02:36:19 PM »
Hi, PDP-8!

Really, Snobol4. In the year of 1970 it must make programmers feel maybe like shut with the blockbuster :)
And thanks for the link to Kernigan interview! Great to see great man talking on the great things :)
Three details attracted my attention: he write with the left hand, prices are in pounds and the paper he wrote on - last time I saw such paper many, many years ago :)
Too many smilies, I know, but its sincere.