cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

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cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

John Moser-2
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What's with all the crap that starts up at boot?  It's a waste of time,
install space, and memory to start a lot of useless things; boot time is
affected when scripts that take 2-3 seconds to load on a SATA-150 Athlon
64 system are uselessly piled on top of one another.

Here's a list of useless things I've noticed in rc3.d and rc5.d:

 S20rsync:  rsyncd -- rsync can work over ssh without an rsyncd; we
            hardly need that running or attempting to run unless
            specifically configured.  It doesn't even start by default
            anyway, the script just pokes at defaults and decides you
            don't want to start it.
 S89cron
 S89anacron
 S89atd:    Periodic Command schedulers -- THREE?  Please pick one to
            use and stick with it.  If we need to use others, we'll turn
            them on, we obviously know what we're doing if we know we
            need any of these

The question of sysklogd and klogd comes to mind as well-- are these
different, do we need 2?
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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Matthew Garrett
On Tue, Jan 10, 2006 at 11:52:43PM -0500, John Richard Moser wrote:

>  S89cron
>  S89anacron
>  S89atd:    Periodic Command schedulers -- THREE?  Please pick one to
>             use and stick with it.  If we need to use others, we'll turn
>             them on, we obviously know what we're doing if we know we
>             need any of these

There's a clear difference between these three applications, and merging
them would be a fairly significant amount of development effort.

cron - executes recurring commands that should occur at a specific time
anacron - executes recurring commands that should take place with a
 given frequency.

(The difference between them is that if a task is scheduled in cron and
the machine is switched off, it won't be executed until the next time
it's due to run. anacron will attempt to catch up when the machine comes
back up)

atd - executes a non-recurring command at a specific time

The fact that all three exist is something of a holdover from legacy
Unix, but it's not possible to just remove one of them.

> The question of sysklogd and klogd comes to mind as well-- are these
> different, do we need 2?

They are different, yes. sysklogd starts the system logger (responsible
for tracking events that come from userspace), and klogd starts the
kernel logger (responsible for tracking events that come from the
kernel).

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Sandis Neilands
In reply to this post by John Moser-2
Hello!

> Here's a list of useless things I've noticed in rc3.d and rc5.d:
>
>  S20rsync:  rsyncd -- rsync can work over ssh without an rsyncd; we
>             hardly need that running or attempting to run unless
>             specifically configured.  It doesn't even start by default
>             anyway, the script just pokes at defaults and decides you
>             don't want to start it.
>  S89cron
>  S89anacron
>  S89atd:    Periodic Command schedulers -- THREE?  Please pick one to
>             use and stick with it.  If we need to use others, we'll turn
>             them on, we obviously know what we're doing if we know we
>             need any of these
>
> The question of sysklogd and klogd comes to mind as well-- are these
> different, do we need 2?
How about cupsys and hplip on machines without printer?
And bunch of laptop services on desktop machines?
And lvm/evms?

I mean if it's not possible to determine if the machine is laptop
automatically then it should be asked during installation. And
cupsys/hplip should be started only if the printer is avaible.

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Matthew Garrett
On Wed, Jan 11, 2006 at 06:20:08PM +0200, Sandis Neilands wrote:

> And bunch of laptop services on desktop machines?

The only laptop service started is laptop-mode, and that comes up after
gdm has been started.

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

John Moser-2
In reply to this post by Sandis Neilands
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Sandis Neilands wrote:

> Hello!
>
>
>>Here's a list of useless things I've noticed in rc3.d and rc5.d:
>>
>> S20rsync:  rsyncd -- rsync can work over ssh without an rsyncd; we
>>            hardly need that running or attempting to run unless
>>            specifically configured.  It doesn't even start by default
>>            anyway, the script just pokes at defaults and decides you
>>            don't want to start it.
>> S89cron
>> S89anacron
>> S89atd:    Periodic Command schedulers -- THREE?  Please pick one to
>>            use and stick with it.  If we need to use others, we'll turn
>>            them on, we obviously know what we're doing if we know we
>>            need any of these
>>
>>The question of sysklogd and klogd comes to mind as well-- are these
>>different, do we need 2?
>
>
> How about cupsys and hplip on machines without printer?

Cups has to be enabled to detect when a printer is added.  If you plug
in a printer without cups running, the machine would ignore it.

> And bunch of laptop services on desktop machines?

If those can be buffed out (pcmcia etc) they should be; I'd imagine hal
could handle all that, it's just extra hardware.

> And lvm/evms?

If you didn't create the disk with lvm/evms, then you're probably smart
enough to turn it on if you set it up later.  Good point.

>
> I mean if it's not possible to determine if the machine is laptop
> automatically then it should be asked during installation. And
> cupsys/hplip should be started only if the printer is avaible.
>

don't know about that, see above.

> --
> Sandis

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Sandis Neilands
In reply to this post by Matthew Garrett
Hello!

On 1/11/06, Matthew Garrett <[hidden email]> wrote:
> On Wed, Jan 11, 2006 at 06:20:08PM +0200, Sandis Neilands wrote:
>
> > And bunch of laptop services on desktop machines?
>
> The only laptop service started is laptop-mode, and that comes up after
> gdm has been started.

I'm shooting in darkness now but BUM says that there are more than that:
apmd, acpi-support, hotkey-setup, pcmcia.

And bluez-utils - since I haven't seen any desktop computer with
bluetooth I am wondering if this is laptop specific too?

As for cupsys, couldn't System -> Administration -> Printing be
patched to start cupsys if it's not started already instead of
throwing error at user?
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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Matthew Garrett
On Thu, Jan 12, 2006 at 12:22:16AM +0200, Sandis Neilands wrote:

> I'm shooting in darkness now but BUM says that there are more than that:
> apmd, acpi-support, hotkey-setup, pcmcia.

None of these are laptop-specific.

> And bluez-utils - since I haven't seen any desktop computer with
> bluetooth I am wondering if this is laptop specific too?

Both my desktops have bluetooth.

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Sandis Neilands
Hello!

> None of these are laptop-specific.
In that case BUMs descriptions are very misleading.

> Both my desktops have bluetooth.
Ok, thanks for clarification.

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Matthew Garrett
On Thu, Jan 12, 2006 at 12:44:45AM +0200, Sandis Neilands wrote:
> > None of these are laptop-specific.
> In that case BUMs descriptions are very misleading.

That's quite possible. Would you mind filing a bug?

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Joao Inacio
In reply to this post by John Moser-2
On 1/11/06, John Richard Moser <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Cups has to be enabled to detect when a printer is added.  If you plug
> in a printer without cups running, the machine would ignore it.
>

Shouldn't the user decide if he will ever want to use a printer? (most
people i know don't)
if so, it should be clear cupsys would need to be started somehow
before trying to plug it in.

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Ivan Krstić-3
Joao Inacio wrote:
> Shouldn't the user decide if he will ever want to use a printer?

No, he shouldn't. He shouldn't be asked about it; if he ever plugs a
printer in, it should "just work".

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Matt Zimmerman-2
In reply to this post by Sandis Neilands
On Wed, Jan 11, 2006 at 06:20:08PM +0200, Sandis Neilands wrote:
> How about cupsys and hplip on machines without printer?

If your machine doesn't (and will never) have a printer, disable the
service.  It's not possible to determine this automatically; my printer, for
example, stays turned off except when I want to use it.

Ideally, these services could be started when the printer is detected, but
this is non-trivial and a low priority.  This would be an interesting little
project for someone looking to get involved with development.

> And bunch of laptop services on desktop machines?

?

> And lvm/evms?

This one might be worth discussing again now that we have the server CD.

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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Scott James Remnant-2
On Thu, 2006-01-12 at 17:18 -0800, Matt Zimmerman wrote:

> Ideally, these services could be started when the printer is detected, but
> this is non-trivial and a low priority.  This would be an interesting little
> project for someone looking to get involved with development.
>
The non-trivial part, btw, is modifying these daemons so they only
expect to be started when a printer is detected and be given information
about that printer externally.

The easy bit is detecting printers.

(For anyone wanting to dive in)

Scott
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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

John Moser-2
In reply to this post by Matthew Garrett
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Matthew Garrett wrote:

> On Tue, Jan 10, 2006 at 11:52:43PM -0500, John Richard Moser wrote:
>
>
>> S89cron
>> S89anacron
>> S89atd:    Periodic Command schedulers -- THREE?  Please pick one to
>>            use and stick with it.  If we need to use others, we'll turn
>>            them on, we obviously know what we're doing if we know we
>>            need any of these
>
>
> There's a clear difference between these three applications, and merging
> them would be a fairly significant amount of development effort.
>
> cron - executes recurring commands that should occur at a specific time
> anacron - executes recurring commands that should take place with a
>  given frequency.
>
> (The difference between them is that if a task is scheduled in cron and
> the machine is switched off, it won't be executed until the next time
> it's due to run. anacron will attempt to catch up when the machine comes
> back up)
>
> atd - executes a non-recurring command at a specific time
>
> The fact that all three exist is something of a holdover from legacy
> Unix, but it's not possible to just remove one of them.
>

Right, good points all around.  The question arises, are these all used
in default Ubuntu desktop?  If so, is there a way to eliminate the use
of one of them?  Update manager for example should probably be anacron;
that's all I can think of, and I think it uses an update daemon anyway.
. . .

>
>>The question of sysklogd and klogd comes to mind as well-- are these
>>different, do we need 2?
>
>
> They are different, yes. sysklogd starts the system logger (responsible
> for tracking events that come from userspace), and klogd starts the
> kernel logger (responsible for tracking events that come from the
> kernel).
>

Thought so; I remember one of the daemons on Gentoo available for
syslogging (metalog, sysklogd, some other one I can't recall) had 2 rc
scripts.  I never paid much mind to these, so it was worth asking :)

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    Creative brains are a valuable, limited resource. They shouldn't be
    wasted on re-inventing the wheel when there are so many fascinating
    new problems waiting out there.
                                                 -- Eric Steven Raymond
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Re: cron, atd, anacron, other wtf

Scott James Remnant-2
On Sun, 2006-01-15 at 17:56 -0500, John Richard Moser wrote:

> Right, good points all around.  The question arises, are these all used
> in default Ubuntu desktop?  If so, is there a way to eliminate the use
> of one of them?  Update manager for example should probably be anacron;
> that's all I can think of, and I think it uses an update daemon anyway.
>
anacron is run from cron, it's not a separate daemon.

For dapper we'll stick with the three you see here, potential
replacements could be evaluated for dapper+1.

Scott
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