Why does FreeBSD not use the Linux kernel?

Michael Sierchio kudzu at tenebras.com
Wed Jun 17 19:30:24 UTC 2020

On Wed, Jun 17, 2020 at 11:37 AM Polytropon <freebsd at edvax.de> wrote:

> On Wed, 17 Jun 2020 10:55:14 -0700, Michael Sierchio wrote:

> > The chief difference from my perspective is that it is possible in
> FreeBSD
> > to create a monolithic kernel and prohibit the loading of kernel modules,
> > foiling one step in the chain of a rootkit.  It's especially convenient
> for
> > embedded devices, security appliances, etc.
> Before the KLD infrastructure became that universal,
> it was quite common to create your kernel configuration
> file specifically for the hardware you wanted to run
> the system on, and add kernel features as needed, so
> everything and _only_ the needed components would be
> in the resulting kernel.
> Another option was to create a very minimalistic kernel,
> then build and load only the modules needed.
> Today the GENERIC kernel supports a lot of hardware
> out of the box, and required modules can often be
> loaded automatically, initiated by userland processes,
> if you want (like from a rc.conf setting or even
> dynamically via devd).
> You can still choose what fits your needs best. :-)

Exactly and precisely.  The custom kernel that contains only hardware
options that are present is a fraction of the size of GENERIC.

> --
> Polytropon
> Magdeburg, Germany
> Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
> Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...


"Well," Brahmā said, "even after ten thousand explanations, a fool is no
wiser, but an intelligent person requires only two thousand five hundred."

- The Mahābhārata

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