SoC boot project weekly summary week #7 and #8/14

Carlos Villegas Carlos.Villegas at
Mon Jul 24 00:09:52 UTC 2006

The main issues treated during the seventh and eigth weeks
of the soc boot project are:

+ More bug reports were filed including one for lintian to
check LSB compliance (Bug report #377740)  Many scripts
would be fixed at the moment we get an LSB check in lintian
and normally we will be providing them with a patch for it
with our Deliverable 5 in a few weeks.  The other bug
reports are for alsa-base (#377716) and alsa-utils (#377717)
which were corrected.

+ I've installed sid in my laptop to have as a benchmark as
well. Some problems had to be overcomed with the usb hard
disk being detected after root needs to be mounted.

+The base distribution I'm using for Sid changed slightly by
installing ssh. Finally, it seems there was a change of boot
time of 4 seconds.

+Based on a discussion in initscripts-ng-devel between
Petter Reinholdtsen and Erich Schubert, I decided to try
ubuntu's readahead to see if we will get a better or worst
boot time. After installing ubuntu's readahead 1.0.1-2 but
noticed not time difference. I also tried the newer
readahead from ubuntu readahead 0.20050517.0220-0ubuntu3 but
now with a loss of 1 second. This includes two scripts
S01readahead and S39readahead-desktop in rcS.d and
S99stop-readahead in rc2.d. 

+The script for generating the web for lsb compliance was
adjusted to include package name and also to be updated
easily with upgrades.

+Meeting with mentor Petter Reinholdtsen in Dublin resulting
in him giving me some more ideas to test and also guiding me
to overcome the problems with preloading.

+Preloading from ubuntu was tried again with positive
results this time.The preload program from Behdad Esfahbod
(a result from SoC2005)  showed a  2 second time
On the other side readahead 0.20050517 from ubuntu was
tested again with a 1 second improvement.

+From the discussion in debian-devel, I compared the
difference of using dash in two different ways:
a) make /bin/sh point to /bin/dash - using the procedure
described in /usr/share/doc/bash/README.Debian.gz, we obtain
a time reduction of 4 seconds.
b) change #!/bin/sh for #!/bin/dash in the init-scripts -
using the substitution function of sed, the initscripts were
changed to use dash. A reduction of 2 seconds was obtained.

+Tried reordering the scripts with insserv and some manual
tuning (insserv repeates scripts in /etc/rc2.d that were
already started in /etc/rcS.d and puts some scripts in an
incorrect order) The boot time was 2 seconds faster than
without insserv.

+As a bug was found when doing parallel execution with
startpar, I compared parallel execution boot time using
startpar  with the one using "shell". Using startpar, there
was no improvement from simply reordering the scripts (the
bug hasn't been fixed) and while testing with
CONCURRENCY=shell there was a 4 second time improvement from
the original system without insserv. 

For the next week I will:

+publish first version of patch to check LSB compliance in
+Implementation of remaining hot spots. Reorder hotspots by
importance from previous results and possibly add new ones.
+Continue reporting bugs for lsb compliance

Comments would be gladly appreciated. If interested, join us
for discussion at the IRC channel #pkg-sysvinit at


Carlos Villegas
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