[Aboriginal] Refactoring/recycling

Rob Landley rob at landley.net
Tue Sep 13 14:40:38 PDT 2016

On 09/12/2016 03:23 AM, Alessio Igor Bogani wrote:
> Hi Rob,
> On 11 September 2016 at 07:17, Rob Landley <rob at landley.net> wrote:
>> On 09/09/2016 07:28 PM, Rob Landley wrote:
>>> easily, and as toybox adances at least 2 of them should go away. The
>>> infrastructure aboriginal linux provides for them is WAY OVERKILL for
>>> what's left for it to do (as evidenced by
>>> https:/github.com/j-core.org/mkroot working fine without any of it).
> [...]
> I guess it uses a cross-compiler, right? So what if I could want add
> an autotools based software?

Do you mean cross compiling something that uses autotools? If so, that's
why #2 (breaking out the airlock step and hosting it somewhere) is still
interesting. I'm currently trying to merge that into the toybox build.

If you mean trying to somehow shove autotools into mkroot itself so that
a simple ~200 line shell script that mostly avoids external dependencies
grows a dependency on autoconf (which for gcc 4.2.1 turned a 2,483 line
configure.in file into a 7,823 line configure script)... that would be
completely insane and defeat the purpose of mkroot.

> Setup qemu and distcc to work side by side is a very good things to me
> and it isn't an overkill at all. In fact it is the reason I'm still
> following this project.

All those steps are things that still need to be done. I'm trying to
break up the project so you can do those things more simply and

> [...]
>> launch init. But now there's CONFIG_DEVTMPFS_MOUNT (and I have a patch
>> to make it apply to initramfs, although when I submitted it upstream
>> they didn't want it and I lost interest because it works for me so if
>> they don't want it, I'm ok with that).
> Could you pinpoint me to the patch? It could be useful for me too.

Attached, although I might wind up taking a different approach. (Screw
CONFIG_DEVTMPFS_MOUNT buried down in drivers/base and applying to legacy
fallback root, what I really want is usr/Kconfig to have a
CONFIG_INITRAMFS_AUTOMOUNT that not only mounts the standard filesystems
(/dev, /dev/pts, /proc, /sys) but creates directories for them if
they're not there. This is bog-standard plumbing, why go halfway?

Your init script still needs to bring the network up (and ifconfig lo

>> I suppose I should post miniconfig.sh again too. (Annually if necessary,
>> since they'll never take it and I'm pretty sure the TEN YEARS since my
>> initial 3 posts submitting miniconfig shows I'm not interested in doing
> Have you ever considered to rework it and integrate it to "make tinyconfig"?

Here are a couple long threads where people basically told me "I know it
works for you but you must completely rewrite it for me because I say
so, and no I won't do it myself that's crazy talk":


Here's me coming back a year later to see if they'd changed their minds:


Here's somebody's blog entry doing their own writeup on the technique:


Here's the FAQ entry i wrote explaining it so I had something to point
people at:


Here's where the kernel documentation includes a description of the
technique they declined to merge:


Moral: Howard Aiken (the guy who was to Grace Hopper what Charles
Babbage was to Ada Lovelace) was right:


> Thank Rob for all!
> Ciao,
> Alessio

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