[Sugar-devel] SoaS on XO bootcharts

Wade Brainerd wadetb at gmail.com
Thu Mar 5 09:03:05 EST 2009

I don't want weird bugs when I finally plug in my netbook to a IPv6
connection at some IT friend's house....
Optimizing bootup based on known, manufactured, fixed hardware is a great
idea though.  The hardware that's built into the machine should easily be
enough to get you into a GUI.
Initializing dynamic hw like USB drives and the network should wait until
*after* booting though.  There's no need to have my pluggable USB key ready
before I can open a file manager or a shell to access it.

Ultimately though, this is a pretty deep issue in the Linux configuration
system.  Time honored systems like /etc/fstab (fixed mount points for
dynamic hardware? wtf!) and Xorg.conf (no pluggable input devices??) make
this a real challenge.  Udev is a step in the right direction, but takes
like 10 seconds itself to start up.

Perhaps the solution is something like this:

Write totally custom initscripts for XO which initialize all the
manufactured hardware and launch into X.  Once X signals that it's up, udev
and NetworkManager are started to recognize all the dynamic stuff, do DHCP,

This could be accomplished by making an alternate '/etc/hwspec/xo-1/rc.d'
tree which parallels /etc/rc.d and contains all the optimized initscripts.
 The 'init' program would detect the XO's hardware signature (presence of
OFW seems typical), and then symlink /etc/hwpsec/xo-1/rc.d over the regular
/etc/rc.d.  If the hardware is unrecognized, /etc/hwspec/generic/rc.d is
symlinked into /etc/rc.d and the generic initscripts are booted.

This /etc/hwspec/... system could be packaged into its own RPM, so there
would be no need to convince upstream to adopt all our optimizations into
the generic initscripts.


On Wed, Mar 4, 2009 at 11:35 PM, <pgf at laptop.org> wrote:

> martin wrote:
>  > In fact, this might be something that upstream wants to think about in
>  > a generic sense. All the boot-in-5s focus lately is a lot of fun (and
>  > great for end-users, I surely want _my_ boxes to boot in 5s), but
>  > depends in part on skipping a lot of poking and waiting for hardware.
>  >
>  > Anyone building a custom Fedora for a netbook will want the same thing
>  > we want: a way to declare a "fast path" for known hw. Specially on the
>  > netbook segment this can have a huge payoff. (Wonder if Ubuntu doing
>  > something like this?)
> i think the real win won't necessarily be declaring a fast path
> for known hw, but _remembering_ a fast path for _any_ hardware.
> i.e., if you've booted 10 times and never found ipv6, and always
> found the same 3 filesystems in the same partitions, maybe it's
> time to stop expecting anything else.  does udev remember anything
> from boot to boot?  seems like it should if it doesn't.
> but as you say, there are also a lot of simple cases:  most machines
> have just one network interface, and it runs dhcp -- so once that
> seems to be true, don't check for anything else.  most machines
> have one fixed disk, etc.
> paul
> =---------------------
>  paul fox, pgf at laptop.org
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> Sugar-devel at lists.sugarlabs.org
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