Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-factory (266 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-factory] initrd -> initramfs
On Fri, 2020-05-08 at 09:59 -0400, Neal Gompa wrote:
On Fri, May 8, 2020 at 7:03 AM Martin Wilck <Martin.Wilck@xxxxxxxx>
wrote:
On Fri, 2020-05-08 at 10:27 +0200, Michal Kubecek wrote:
IMHO an important point is that such fallout still could be
justified
if
the change fixed an actual problem affecting users or improved
the
distribution for users in a significant way. I don't see either
in
the
reasoning (for the rename) provided so far.

I fully agree. Daniel has put forward two arguments:

1. formally correct naming of the files,
2. removal of SUSE-specific patches.

Wrt 1.) I'd say it's an academic argument, irrelevant and not worth
giving a single thought, if it's clear that the name change will
cause
real problems for real people.

2.) is a different issue. The negative effect of ongoing
maintenance
efforts shouldn't be underestimated. However, in this particular
case I
don't see a real problem. AFAICS the current dracut code base
contains
only two related commits:

1442c9d Fix initramfs-$ver.img vs initrd-$ver in dracut-initramfs-
restore.sh
16f2179 Adjust initramfs-$kernel.img to SUSE default: initrd-
$kernel

These amount to 8 deleted and 6 added code lines in total. I dare
say
that that's also not worth even the slightest risk of causing
regressions for anyone.

@Daniel, please correct me if I have overlooked something
important.


This delta has knock-on effects, too:

* It makes it difficult for third-party software to detect and
recognize our initramfs.

I understand the argument in general. Even small differences between
distributions may be cumbersome to handle for 3rd parties. However,
it's really not that hard in this specific case, is it?

* It is confusing as the documentation on the internet about this
makes it hard for people to trust openSUSE's software is doing the
right thing

I'd like to see evidence for that - mistrust in a distro, based on the
choice of a file name?

Actually, I don't believe that users are seriously confused. Who cares
about the format? For novice users, all this goes on behind the scenes.
Others understand that these are the files to be put on the "initrd"
line in grub.cfg(*). More experienced users grok that these are images
containing an early user space for the kernel for bootstrapping the OS.
But only two entities are truly concerned with the file format, one is
the kernel, and the other one is dracut itself.

Also, someone upthread mentioned Debian. Debian uses upstream naming
in dracut mode, and uses their own naming with initramfs-tools. This
has been that way for a few releases of Debian now.

I don't see what this implies for openSUSE. From the ISV PoV, I'd
expect that supporting these two "modes" in Debian/Ubuntu, or
initramfs-tools in general, would be a much bigger pain point than
openSUSE's choice of the file name.

I personally was bitten by the delta in SUSE distributions when doing
work as an ISV trying to support SUSE distributions. I want to make
it
easier for others to support SUSE distributions, so I really welcome
this change.

Sorry to hear you had trouble, but saving ISVs some (relatively small)
effort isn't worth breaking users' systems, IMO.

Regards
Martin

(*) grub uses the word "initrd":
https://www.gnu.org/software/grub/manual/grub/html_node/initrd.html
It even calls that file "initial ramdisk". If we want to be consistent
and avoid confusing anybody, that ought to be changed as well...

--
Dr. Martin Wilck <mwilck@xxxxxxxx>, Tel. +49 (0)911 74053 2107
SUSE Software Solutions Germany GmbH
HRB 36809, AG Nürnberg GF: Felix
Imendörffer

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