Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (770 mails)

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systemd kool-aid [was Re: [opensuse] Separate /usr?]
On 08/14/2012 07:18 PM, Brian K. White wrote:
It's perfectly ok to invent systemd and for some systems to use it. That is
entirely within the free world of unix. But it's just not a good tool for
managing a general purpose OS like Suse. It's good for highly specialized,
limited, focused and managed black boxes like appliances, phones, tablets,
maybe chromebooks. But until it becomes as flexible as the shell scripts it's
replacing (which it could, they just refuse to), it's no good for a general
purpose OS. It makes the OS more efficient for some things, more manageable,
and less useful.

Why do distributions seem to drink the same kool-aid? Some seem to just run to the punch bowl and fill their cup with the latest batch, while others linger talking to friends until they get thirsty. However, due to the fact that only one punch bowl is chilled -- all seem to eventually drink from it.

Systemd is a great example. I have not run into a limitation that init-scripts cannot accommodate, but since it seem that handhelds are capable of booting it, we now have everyone in the room (Linux distros collectively) running to dump init-scripts and move to systemd, just because it looks like some new fancy-colored punch in the bowl.

As with all new recipes, it's not quite done, and it needs a few more ingredient before it actually tastes as good as the old... But since it is new, let's just abandon our old favorite and rush to the new...

I'm all for improved, more capable, more flexible, etc..., but sometimes is seems there is no compelling reason for a new flavor of punch. Systemd seems like the poster child of this craze...

In all of the discussion about systemd, all anyone should care about is:

(1) Does systemd provide *needed* additional capabilities that are not currently available;

(2) What are they?

(3) What are the disadvantages of the switch?

(4) Do the advantages significantly outweigh the disadvantages, taking into consideration the time, talent and energy required to implement the change (for both the developers and end-users)?

If it is justified -- do it. If it is just being pushed because it is somebody pet project, then seriously consider impacting all end-users before foisting the change on them. It just leaves Linux looking punch-drunk...

David C. Rankin, J.D.,P.E.
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