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Changing the default syslogd (again...)

OK, I brought this up a while back.  (For some reason I can't seem to find the
beginning of the topic, but see 
http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel/2006/01/msg00238.html )
I got a few comments in favor.

Someone asked what syslog other distros are using.  RedHat is still using sysklogd.
However, they are discussing switching to syslog-ng for Fedora Core 6
(http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/FC6Future).  SuSE is using syslog-ng.  Mandriva is
still using sysklogd.  I haven't found out about anyone else.

Every admin I know switches to something else.  :-(

(1) Quality.
sysklogd has 105 open bugs: 3 important (1 with patch), 43 normal (11 with patches),
11 minor (4 with patches), and 19 wishlist (some of which are really quite important,
such as 44523)

The source code is a hairy mess, in my opinion, and I can see why these bugs aren't
being fixed.  It's been prone to repeated RC bugs, IMO due to the hairiness of the
codebase.  (I would also really not like to try a licensing audit of this package.)

syslog-ng: 26 open bugs, 3 important, 9 normal, 2 minor (1 with patch).
metalog: 15 open bugs, 1 RC (patched), 2 normal, 1 minor
inetutils-syslogd: 3 open bugs (2 normal, 1 wishlist).
socklog-run: 1 open bug, wishlist

(2) Upstream status.
There hasn't been a new upstream for sysklogd since 2001.
All of the others are active upstream.

(3) Features.
Essentially all of the others are considered more featureful.

(4) Size.
Installed sizes:

sysklogd: 204
depends on klogd: 132
total 336

inetutils-syslogd: 104
depends on lsb-base ('required'): 24
depends on zlib1g ('required'): 164
depends on netbase ('important'): 188
(depends on some Essential: yes packages as well)

syslog-ng: 492
depends on util-linux ('required'): 992
depends on lsb-base ('required'): 24
(depends on some Essential: yes packages as well)

metalog: 132
depends on libpcre3: 380
total: 512

socklog-run: 148
depends on socklog: 244 
depends on runit: 488
depends on ipsvd: 384
depends on libmatrixssl1.7: 100
total: 1364

We should change the default syslogd.

Size may be an issue.  However, except for socklog-run, the alternate syslog packages
depend almost entirely on packages which will probably already be installed.

If we want the default syslogd to be small, and assume that netbase will be installed,
we should default to inetutils-syslogd.

If we aren't so worried about size, we should go with syslog-ng or metalog.  Probably
syslog-ng just for the familiarity of SuSE users.

The installer can use whatever seems most appropriate (does it even log?): but 
based on size, I strongly suspect inetutils-syslogd will be the winner, even over 
sysklogd.  I expect that most of what it needs from netbase will turn out to 
already be available in the installer.

Given the state of sysklogd, I hope that it can be removed entirely from a future
release of Debian.

Nathanael Nerode  <neroden@twcny.rr.com>

Theocracy, fascism, or absolute monarchy -- I don't care which it is, I don't like it.

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