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#1 2005-12-23 11:13:48

Registered: 2005-12-23
Posts: 179

Kernel and modules


I'm trying and learnig archlinux, so i'm a completely new to it, but not in linux. I've been using for the past 3 years LFS, so, fortunately, i now what i want.

First of all, i'd like to say that archlinux have surprised me. It isn't as difficult as i thought. In about 1 hour, i was using a complete KDE system from a clean arch instalation. This, for those who know LFS, make me happy ;-) and, instead the whole dependencies of each package are installed, the system is really fast.

The only thing that i wasn't able to make work was the automatic mounting of CD and Flash USB using HAL, Dbus and pmount. I don't know why. It was like pmount doesn't worked for me. In future post, i'll be back with that question ;-)

But, at this moment, i have another question about kernel and modules.

I've always use a non-modular kernel with all my system put directly in the kernel. In fact, i've tested the LFS kernel in arch and all has gone ok (i removed all modules related in rc.conf and rc.sysinit). I like it, but, now, i'd like to try a a bit modular kernel.

In the mentionated kernel all the thing that allways use, would go directly into it, and the ocasionally used things, as modules (note that ocasionally means that never are needed in the boot process). That is:

- CR-Rom and related
- USB and related

This modules, would be loaded ONLY if they are used. So, in a normal boot process, a lsmod output would be nothing.

So, first question:
All the things about modules in the boot process could safely be removed (or uncomment) from the rc.conf and rc.sysinit, isn't it?

In the case that i insert a CD-Rom, the module would be automatically loaded. No using a modprobe manually. In this case, Second question:
For make this posible, the only thing that i need is a proper modprobe.conf file, isnt't it? (i use 2.6 series)

Leaving at this point, i'd have a system as i want, and, with a fast startup, nor loosing time in insert modules, nor looking for the hardware of my system.

Note that all this is for learning, as i know with a non modular kernel, all this won't be necesary. As you can see, my module knowledge is very short.

Finally, i'm in doubt about how maintein the kernel with pacman.
- With my actual knowledge, i'd download it from and do the normal work. But, i think that pacman would download his own kernel precompiled. Can be avoid the kernel upgrade by pacman?

I've been taking a look to the wiki, but i haven't the things quite clear.

What do you think about all the things i've said?



#2 2005-12-23 12:39:25

Forum Fellow
From: Melbourne, Australia
Registered: 2004-10-09
Posts: 4,927

Re: Kernel and modules

You would gain nothing by setting up a kernel that would load modules on demand. Most drivers within the kernel use practically no ram, and I'd be happy to leave them in on all but the most ram limited systems, and I mean < 32 or 64mb.

The complexity needed to load on demand simply doesnt outweight the benefit. None. You might save one, maybe a couple of megs of ram, but simply, it won't make the system run any quicker.

Don't waste the time, it simply isnt worth it.



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