[svlug] (forw) [DNG] Linux system can be brought down by sending SIGILL to Systemd

Steve Litt slitt at troubleshooters.com
Sat May 25 23:39:14 PDT 2019

On Sat, 25 May 2019 19:27:54 -0400
Dan Ritter <dsr at randomstring.org> wrote:

> Sarah Newman wrote: 
> > On 5/24/19 2:04 PM, Rick Moen wrote:
> >   
> > > ----- Forwarded message from Martin Steigerwald
> > > <martin at lichtvoll.de> -----  
> >   
> > > 
> > > This is another reason for me to start to provide Devuan VMs in
> > > the Proxmox VE environment I use to provide VMs of various
> > > distributions to the participants of my trainings. So
> > > participants can have a look at it and do exercises with it if
> > > they like. I already started to incorporate information about
> > > Devuan in some of my slides.  
> > 
> > 
> > Anyone have opinions on whether Devuan worth it compared to just
> > removing systemd? We make Debian images without systemd (except for
> > udev, udev is still systemd) and they work. 
> Given the existence of the Debian Init Diversity Team and the
> participation of Devuan devs in it, I would remain hopeful that
> sometime in the next two Debian stable releases all the just
> criticisms levelled by Devuan will be resolved and the projects
> will merge.

I'd be fine with that as long as the merged project is called "Devuan"
and the Debian constitution goes away, and the current Devuan leaders
are the new merged project leaders.

Because otherwise, the moment Devuan ceases to be a thing, and
Debian has all the power, Debian will do this again:


It took a lot of sweat and guts and time and work for Devuan to fork and
de-systemdize Debian. Almost everyone said they were bluffing, and
then when they started all the "smart" people said Devuan couldn't
succeed. Well, they succeeded, and I'd hate to see that go to waste. I
looked at the oldest and newest posts on the Debian Init Diversity Team
mailing list, and those guys are where all systemd-avoiders were in
late 2014: Alt-initting and hoping for the best, or doing package
pinning mumbo jumbo with all sorts of magic incantations to get things
working (and then working without direct shutdown/reboot from the WMDE
(Window Manager/Desktop Environment)).

What everyone seems to be forgetting in this Devuan/Debian Kumbayah
moment is that systemd was designed from the bottom up to be
incompatible with other inits, to mix DNA both directions with widely
used programs (Gnome 3 is just one), thereby making itself
irreplaceable. I personally don't see Poettering, Redhat or
Freedesktop.Org abandoning that strategy. So by necessity, long term,
init diversity requires complete banning of systemd. Without systemd
throwing multiple monkey wrenches in the works, you can choose between
runit, s6, OpenRC, Epoch, sysvinit, Busybox init, and Suckless init
plus daemontools.

I'm not an insider in the Debian/Devuan cooperation, but from my
outside viewpoint it sure looks to me like the Debian Init
Diversity Team is just an Embrace/extend/extinguish mechanism, whether
that team is aware of it or not.

I see a lot of value in a long term separate Devuan. People who want
init diversity, with the exception of systemd, can go with Devuan.
Those wanting systemd can go with Debian. Everybody's happy.

Steve Litt 
June 2019 featured book: Thriving in Tough Times

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