userland boot time

Werner Almesberger werner at
Mon Jan 21 14:46:17 CET 2008

Carsten Haitzler wrote:
> 5. syslog - call me a heretic,

Naw, I won't :-) syslog seems pretty useless under the best of
circumstances. Perhaps something that gets the messages from things
that insist on using the syslog interface and just dumps them on the
console or rotates them in a 16kB buffer in /tmp would be sufficient.

> 12. xserver-nodm - this is where the rest of the bootup pain begins.

Unfortunately, this is also the first thing we need in terms of giving
the user the impression that something is happening. It's not so bad
if things take a long time, but it's bad if users feel that there's
no progress.

By the way, before we get excessive with the boot time: how often do
we actually expect the full system to boot ? When used as a phone,
most people would probably try to keep it in suspend when power is
low and then recharge, before running out of juice completely.

Low-level system hackers (kernel et al.) should get bored with user
space startup quickly enough that they'll customize their boot
process anyway.

So while long boot time is something that catches your eye during
development, I'm not so sure it matters all that much in real life.

- Werner

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