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Re: /etc/shutmsg - a suggestion?

On Fri, Oct 23, 1998 at 03:23:10PM +0100, David Wright wrote:
> On Fri, 23 Oct 1998, Stephen J. Carpenter wrote:
> > On Fri, Oct 23, 1998 at 11:11:31AM +0200, ulisses@pusa.eleinf.uv.es wrote:
> [...]
> > > 
> > > If this directory is mounted readonly it will fail, I think is a common
> > > practice to have /etc readonly when an installation is stable (no more
> > > software updates, etc) to avoid hard disk corruption in one of the most
> > > important system directories...
> > > 
> [...]
> > 
> > That tends to imply that /etc could be mounted read-only.
> > however... mtab is writeable and needs to be? hmmm
> > (that is mentioned in the fsstnd also)...
> > 
> > 
> > > Should this be written to /var/<something>?
> > 
> > I tend to agree....having read the fsstnd, I tend to think mtab should be 
> > moved there as well. It seems to be the intention of it to move
> > (ideally) everything which NEEDS to be writable for the system to function
> > to /var 
> Wouldn't it work if /etc/mtab were a link to, say, /var/[...]/mtab
> (and there's also /etc/rmtab).

hmm...from the mount(8) man page:

       The programs mount and umount maintain a list of currently
       mounted  file  systems in the file /etc/mtab.  If no argu-
       ments are given to mount, this list is printed.  When  the
       proc  filesystem  is  mounted  (say  at  /proc), the files
       /etc/mtab and /proc/mounts have very similar contents. The
       former  has  somewhat  more information, such as the mount
       options used, but is not necessarily up-to-date  (cf.  the
       -n option below). It is possible to replace /etc/mtab by a
       symbolic link to /proc/mounts,  but  some  information  is
       lost  that  way,  and  in particular working with the loop
       device will be less convenient.

of course...having this extra information is nice...but I see not
reason not to put mtab in /var under that case...

/var/state/mtab (or somethin like that)

hmm rmtab just lists nfs mountable file systems....that sounds like a 
/var/state one too...

> > 
> > I find it curious that this was not also moved. Also to be noted
> > that /etc contains files (like fstab) which are NEEDED for boot and
> > to even mount other file systems...so it MUST be part of
> > the root partition and can not be on a partition of its own 
> > (unless...it existed and had enough files to boot...then got
> > overlayed with a larger partition...seems to defeat the purpose though)
> Well, not if the purpose is a read-only /etc partition.
> Hey, what about /setc and /etc like /sbin and /bin !

since rmtab and mtab serve such little purpose and can be moved...I see no
reason not to do so (and maybe sym link from /etc/mtab to var...until such
time as it can be properly patched)

of course... /etc still needs to be part of the root filesystem for 
boot (init.d scripts.. inittab....that IS afterall how things get mounted)
> > 
> > and teh root partition must be mounted read-write.
> Yes but not much changes there, does it?
> At boot time, /dev changed, /etc had motd and ioctl.save updated,
> and /proc was mounted. That's about it if you set up links for
> mounting floppies and so on (I don't).

Perhaps this should bebrought up on the fsstnd lists (er FHS now)
I believe there is a mailing list for it.... I definitly like the

I think the reason these are allowed is A) tradition and B) /etc HAS to
be on the root filesystem...it can't be a seprate read-only partition.


/* -- Stephen Carpenter <sjc@delphi.com> --- <sjc@debian.org>------------ */
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