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#1 2023-04-29 15:03:06

Chris98
Member
Registered: 2022-12-30
Posts: 5

systemd to openrc full migration

Hi guys,

Before I begin this post, I just wanted to say that I love Arch Linux. It's an amazing operating system and probably the only real Linux distribution I would want to consider using because of the control and flexibility you have over it.

However what I'm finding more and more is that everything is far too tightly coupled with systemd... this is not good. I don't really see any point in going over old ground as I'm sure whatever original intentions Poettering had were to try and help people, but the simple fact is that the implementation of this software is a mess and it violates just about every standard and sensible thing you would do. As a 10+ year Software Engineer I can spot the differences between good and bad software a mile away.

I really do not want to use it - which is a shame because there are some really good features in there. I'd like to fully migrate my system away from systemd to openrc as the init system and service manager, while still retaining Arch Linux as the base OS.

I've already read the Wiki page and have gone through everything, I've managed to get OpenRC as my init system very easily. A lot of the additional packages are also removed already such as systemd-timesync etc....

The issue I am now having is completely stripping out systemd and replacing it for service management. What I'm finding is that packages such as base, lvm2, util-linux, and many, many others are requiring systemd and there are no suitable replacements I can find via the AUR.

Is there any particular reason why this is the case, or why Arch Linux only supports systemd? I will be honest this feels like yet another heirarchical top-down push to force systemd on users.

I was hoping someone may be able to offer some guidance on whether what I'm asking for is possible and if so how this can be achieved. I'm aware that it is already possible with Artix Linux, but I do not want to migrate to a forked or subordinate distro and I do not really want to mix and match packages between distros either.

If this is not possible, then I will probably not be able to continue using Arch which is a shame considering how much everything else fits with my ethos and values.

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#2 2023-04-29 15:36:56

Lone_Wolf
Member
From: Netherlands, Europe
Registered: 2005-10-04
Posts: 11,824

Re: systemd to openrc full migration

The decision to switch from sysv init to systemd was made sometime in 2012 after heated discussions on forum and mailing lists.

If you have a few days time, check https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=147272 ( 429 posts )

Less then 6 months ago there was an interesting discussion on arch-dev-public about "init freedom" , see https://lists.archlinux.org/archives/li … Y3QTIN2DP/ .

Unfortunately the result was not positive for other init systems.

As someone who has booted to openrc on archlinux for many years (until approx 2018) and co-maintained the aur openrc package for  a big part of that time I don't know a way to remove systemd and continue to be an archlinux user.

The consensus about the absolute minimal requirement for running an archlinux system appears to be it needs to have base installed, which includes systemd .

Last edited by Lone_Wolf (2023-04-29 15:37:41)


Disliking systemd intensely, but not satisfied with alternatives so focusing on taming systemd.


(A works at time B)  && (time C > time B ) ≠  (A works at time C)

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#3 2023-04-29 16:01:45

seth
Member
Registered: 2012-09-03
Posts: 48,803

Re: systemd to openrc full migration

there are no suitable replacements I can find via the AUR

At this point you'd also be customizng the system so much that'd you effectively re-invent artix.

If you're looking for a systemd-free distro, have you taken a look at alpine?

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#4 2023-04-30 14:31:42

Chris98
Member
Registered: 2022-12-30
Posts: 5

Re: systemd to openrc full migration

Thanks both of you for your replies. They're quite helpful.

After thinking this through a little more, I think if I can at least get rid of Jornald, use OpenRC for init and systemd for service management, I will be happy for now. I'm not sure how possible this is either though as the Arch wiki seems very partial on the OpenRC front and rather lacking. I'm also wondering whether it's possible to run systemd as only a service managed as it seems to need pid1 for everything, it seems an "all or nothing" approach.

The other issue is the use of a display manager since I can't find displaymanager-openrc in the AUR either. I know this has been updated/discontinued but I'm not sure of new package naming and also can't find and updated version in the aur.

As someone who has booted to openrc on archlinux for many years (until approx 2018) and co-maintained the aur openrc package for  a big part of that time I don't know a way to remove systemd and continue to be an archlinux user.

This is really interesting. What made you decide to change back from openrc if you don't mind me asking?

If you're looking for a systemd-free distro, have you taken a look at alpine?

Alpine is lacking in a few things which I'm looking for unfortunately, and isn't really on the same scale... but thanks for the suggestion. I feel Arch or Arch-lite is the way to go.

Last edited by Chris98 (2023-04-30 14:34:03)

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#5 2023-05-01 11:15:40

Lone_Wolf
Member
From: Netherlands, Europe
Registered: 2005-10-04
Posts: 11,824

Re: systemd to openrc full migration

https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/open … ent-653572

As you can see no one ever responded to that. Around that time I suffered from motherboard / chipset failures that forced me to replace my desktop with a new one.
I did intend to put openrc back on it and make it a multi-init system again* but never got around to doing that.

Something that did play a role was that as an aur package maintainer I needed to use devtools to test building packages and that had switched to systemd-nspawn.
It was theoretically possible to start a systemd-nspawn container when booted with openrc, but I never managed to get that working on archlinux .

Archlinux can be run as  a multi-init distro with a choice of init systems for PID1 , but those alternatives need to coexist with systemd and use systemd parts for atleast  some functionality ( udev is one example) .
The majority of those that like openrc seem to have big issues with having systemd installed, and even bigger issues with using parts of it . 
Sometimes they try archlinux and stay a while before moving on .


* the broken desktop had openrc as default, with booting to systemd and sysv often and occasionaly booting runit and a few more.


Disliking systemd intensely, but not satisfied with alternatives so focusing on taming systemd.


(A works at time B)  && (time C > time B ) ≠  (A works at time C)

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#6 2023-06-08 18:02:58

Eyjafjallajokull
Member
Registered: 2023-04-22
Posts: 3

Re: systemd to openrc full migration

Hello.  I may be late, but Artix has a guide for migrating from systemd to any other init system.  Moreover, Artix can be used with packages from the Arch and AUR repositories including.

https://wiki.artixlinux.org/Main/Migration

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#7 2023-06-08 19:17:51

Trilby
Inspector Parrot
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 29,374
Website

Re: systemd to openrc full migration

Well, no, that's a guide to migrating from archlinux to artix.  And frankly just installing it from scratch would be easier and less error prone if that's the direction one wanted to go.

Last edited by Trilby (2023-06-08 19:19:28)


"UNIX is simple and coherent..." - Dennis Ritchie, "GNU's Not UNIX" -  Richard Stallman

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#8 2023-06-09 08:39:23

Irets
Member
Registered: 2019-02-01
Posts: 143

Re: systemd to openrc full migration

Lone_Wolf wrote:

The consensus about the absolute minimal requirement for running an archlinux system appears to be it needs to have base installed, which includes systemd .

I wonder what kind of breakage would occur if one were to replace SystemD with a dummy package when installing base.
There exists various open-rc equivalent packages to replace SystemD ones and for service files you could try the ones which Gentoo developers have written.

Of course this kind of fight against the system probably isn't worth the hassle as you're expect to use SystemD on Arch. I'd try a spinoff of Arch, Funtoo or Gentoo for a SystemD-less computing experience with open-rc.

My two cents.

Last edited by Irets (2023-06-09 08:40:39)

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