HEADS UP: /bin and /sbin are now dynamically linked

Bill Vermillion bv at wjv.com
Sun Nov 16 20:37:50 PST 2003

> ------------------------------

> Message: 10
> Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2003 14:50:24 -0800
> From: Darren Pilgrim <dmp at bitfreak.org>
> Subject: Re: HEADS UP: /bin and /sbin are now dynamically linked

> On 2003.11.16 09:46:47 -0500, Robert M.Zigweid <rzigweid at zigweid.net>
> wrote:
> > 
> > On Nov 16, 2003, at 12:10 AM, Gordon Tetlow wrote:

> > > I just committed a patch to change /bin and /sbin from
> > > statically to dynamically linked. If you don't like the
> > > idea of using a dynamically linked /bin and /sbin, now is
> > > the time to define NO_DYNAMICROOT in your make.conf.

> > > The reasons for doing so have been hashed over lots of times. But
> > > the short of it:

> > > 1) Much smaller /bin and /sbin. On i386, /bin and /sbin are 33 MB 
> > > static.
> > >    Dynamically linked, they are only 4 MB.

I don't think saving that little space on the / partition is as
important as having everthing in sbin being able to stand alone no
matter what is corrupted.

On a non-FreeBSD system I had to recover, I had to physically take
the server from the colo to a place where I could pull the drive
to be able to run the recovery utitlities - as none of the dynamic
binariies worked.

One thing I always liked of the FBSD approach as opposed to others
is to make ever tool that might possible be needed in a system
recovery static so if it was there it would work.

> > > 2) Proper support for NSS. This will finally allow you to use NSS 
> > > modules
> > >    and get things like usernames in ls -l working for modules that
> > >    are dynamically loaded.

> What was done to programs like /bin/sh, /sbin/init and /sbin/fsck to
> make them work without access to /usr/lib?

And even if they are accessible >IF< the libraries become corrupted
then nothing will work.  That's certainly not a 'fail-safe'

I would think that instead of NO_DYNAMICROOT root in make.conf,
a varialbe of  DYNAMICROOT be used with the default of building
static, and having the option of building dynamic for those
who need to save those few MB of space.  IOW don't change one of
the things that has made the BSD so rugged and reliable for so many

For those who don't build the OS but install from binaries, this
makes the system potentially less rugged.

One of the things I disliked about the Linux systems I've been on
is libraries that change and break things - for things which >I<
felt should have been static in the first place

> End of freebsd-current Digest, Vol 34, Issue 26

Bill Vermillion - bv @ wjv . com

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