Loren M. Lang
lorenl at alzatex.com
Sun Mar 13 14:11:28 PST 2005
On Sun, Mar 13, 2005 at 04:53:36PM -0500, Bart Silverstrim wrote:
> On Mar 13, 2005, at 4:34 PM, Loren M. Lang wrote:
> >On Sun, Mar 13, 2005 at 01:24:42PM -0500, Bart Silverstrim wrote:
> >>On Mar 12, 2005, at 2:45 PM, Chris wrote:
> >>>Aperez wrote:
> >>>>Hello everybdody
> >>>>I read an interview of Linus Torvald made by Linux Magazine. In that
> >>>>interview Linus mentioned the following:
> >>>>"On the other hand, no, Linux does not have that stupid notion of
> >>>>having totally separate kernel development for different issues. If
> >>>>you want a secure BSD, you get OpenBSD; if you want a usable BSD,
> >>>>get FreeBSD; and if you want BSD on other architectures, you get
> >>>>NetBSD. That___s just idiotic, to have different teams worry about
> >>>>different things."
> >>>Here's irony posed as a question:
> >>>... and how many distros of Linux are there?
> >>I think the difference is that Linus is working on the Linux kernel.
> >>The distros, numerous as they are, all run the same kernel. Those
> >>separate distros package the other applications and userland apps and
> >>default configs. The kernel itself isn't under separate forks,
> >>from what I understand the kernels for FBSD/NetBSD/OBSD are very
> >>similar, share a lot of crossed-over code, but are not identical and
> >>have separate "management" teams behind them.
> >While each distros kernel is probably less different than a NetBSD vs.
> >FreeBSD kernel, there still each different and a lot more of them. I
> >had to download and install a very specific kernel from redhat to use
> >my debian system so I could use my wireless card.
> >Also, some features can very wildly like IPSEC, some distros patch in
> >FreeSWAN's stack, others the KAME stack.
> Some vendors may be directly patching certain features, for the most
> part you shouldn't have to download a specific kernel for a feature to
> work in Linux unless you wanted it pre-packaged. You should be able to
> update it by downloading the latest features, running the config to
> enable/disable what features you want compiled into the kernel (or as
> modules), then compile it.
Well, the vendor for my wireless card provided a binary-only driver with
a small open-source wrapper. The wrapper was just a piece of garbage
though and compiling it for a different kernel didn't work. The driver
was designed for redhat's 2.4.18-3 kernel. That kernel had a couple of
issues and redhat issued an update, 2.4.18-10. The wireless card driver
wouldn't even work on the -10 kernel, it would crash my system
everytime, I had to use the -3 kernel to use it at all. This is one of
the problems/features of the linux kernel, it doesn't work with binary
device drivers like the *BSD kernel do.
> When everything else breaks because the kernel version changed and
> something specific is linked to something that depends on something
> from the previous kernel's config, then you get to delve into some real
> fun. But still, there is one source kernel, and unless the vendors did
> something proprietary (which I don't believe they're supposed to be
> allowed to do), you can compile your own kernel with your own set of
> enabled and disabled features from the Linux kernel source tree whether
> you're running Red Hat or Debian; it may break if that particular
> distro is depending on certain features as you have it configured and
> you fubar the new kernel's config, but it is still a matter of tweaking
> that configuration to get it working again.
> I can't download the sources for NetBSD's kernel, compile it on my
> FreeBSD box, and have it work no matter how much tweaking I do to the
> configuration...if I'm wrong, please someone correct me.
> I *think* (and I'm not following the story closely) what Linus was
> saying is that it's stupid to have so many people working in parallel
> on such similar cousins...NetBSD, OpenBSD, and FreeBSD. They share
> code, they share info, but optimize for certain goals and have a lot of
> redundancy. Linux's kernel is Linux's kernel, modified by individuals
> but still one big bulky source tree to work from. Is one way less
> intelligent than others? I don't know. I never studied it :-) All I
> know is that in general, for most end users, it doesn't matter...if
> they stick with a particular distro and their sources and packages,
> then things tend to work. Linux has fragmented so much that it's
> difficult to get a package aimed at distro A and have it work on distro
> B despite them both being Linux. For the BSD's, it's pretty much
> always worked as if it's in the port tree, you have the package in
> question work. Otherwise, work from sources. And instructions to get
> a package working on *BSD pretty much always work whereas for Linux you
> may run Debian but find instructions for what you're trying to do
> written for an audience running Red Hat, so you need to translate
> things as you go along.
I sense much NT in you.
NT leads to Bluescreen.
Bluescreen leads to downtime.
Downtime leads to suffering.
NT is the path to the darkside.
Powerful Unix is.
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