Re: [Announce] s6.rc: a distribution-friendly init/rc framework

From: Laurent Bercot <>
Date: Fri, 23 Mar 2018 14:19:12 +0000

>In their defence, I don't think any mainstream distribution makes this
>kind of modifications easy. IMO it's safe to assume a new init system
>means a new distribution (possibly derived from something larger).

  And that is why I intend to start with smaller, more flexible,
less inertia-driven distributions such as Alpine and Adélie (and
maybe Void or Manjaro or... someday). Mainstream distributions will
only show interest when the work has already been done somewhere else,
multiple times, and has been proven to be significantly better than
what they already have.

>Extra layers generally make things harder to work with, not easier.

  It really depends on the quality of the automation here. If the
abstraction is leaky and you have to look into the lower layer, then
yes, the upper layer is a hindrance more than anything. But if the
abstraction is airtight, as I intend to make it, then people can just
work with the upper layer and not worry about the inner mechanisms.
The inner mechanisms are still there and tweakable for power users,
but the point is to get a smooth, simplified interface on top.

>Whoever may be building something new with s6 would probably benefit
>more from a reference system that's simple enough to understand
>and which could be used as a base for extending into a full blown
>distribution. Having examples at hand would likely matter much more
>than the format of service description.

  That is what I would naturally lean towards, but it is explicitly
*not* what I was told by distro maintainers. You need to be realistic
here and admit that file-based configuration with key=value lines is
more human-friendly than directory-based configuration. Old habits
die hard, and people who are used to the systemd or openrc way of doing
things just do not want to completely switch their mental model and
deal with something with directories and small files everywhere, and
what the heck is a service directory and why can't you tune your
daemon settings in a config file like everyone else.

  Fortunately, the s6 and s6-rc formats are easy to autogenerate; some
may even argue that they were *purposefully* designed to be easy to
autogenerate. Who knows. So, slapping a UI on top of them is, like,
exactly the kind of thing they're good at, so if that's what people
there's no reason not to give people what they want.

>The reaction to the slew manual I'm afraid will likely be along the
>lines of "that's all cool and stuff but how do I actually run this?".

  That is exactly most people's reaction when they first discover the
supervision paradigm. You need to somewhat know how it works to fully
appreciate its quality.

Received on Fri Mar 23 2018 - 14:19:12 UTC

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