Re: kvmtool tree (Was: Re: [patch] config: fix make kvmconfig)

From: Ingo Molnar
Date: Mon Feb 11 2013 - 07:56:40 EST

* Ingo Molnar <mingo@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> [...]
> - he ended up gradually validating whether lockdep could be
> ported to user-space. He first used 'messy' integration:
> kernel/lockdep.c hacked up badly and linked directly into
> user-space app. Then he did 'clean' integration: some
> modifications to kernel/lockdep.c enabled it to be
> librarified, and then the remaining work was done in
> user-space - here too in successive steps.
> - tools/kvm/ happened to be hosted in the same kernel repo
> that the locking tree is hosted in.
> The end result is something good that I never saw happen to
> kernel code before, in the last 20 years of the Linux kernel.
> Maybe it could have happened with an outside tools/kvm repo,
> but I very strongly suspect that it would not.
> In theory this could have been done in the cold, fragmented,
> isolated and desolate landscape of Linux user-space utilities,
> by copying kernel/lockdep.c and a handful of kernel headers to
> user-space, and making it work there somehow.
> Just like a blue rose could in theory grow on Antarctica as
> well, given the right set of circumstances. It just so happens
> that blue roses best grow in Holland, where there's good
> support infrastructure for growing green stuff, while you'd
> have to look hard to find any green stuff at all on
> Antarctica.

To use another, perhaps more applicable analogy:

If one has the choice to start a new business in the U.S., it
would be reasonable to do that. There's a lot of supporting
infrastructure, trust, distribution, standards, enforcement
agencies and available workers.

Could the same business succeed in Somalia as well? Possibly -
if it's a bakery or something similarly fundamental. More
complex businesses would likely not thrive very well there.

*That* is how I think the current Linux kernel tooling landscape
looks like currently in a fair number of places: in many aspects
it's similar to Somalia - disjunct entities with not much
commonality or shared infrastructure.

Why people question the desire for a kernel related project
(that only runs on a Linux host) to actually be part of an
already well working, civilized society (the kernel repo) - for
mutual, well documented benefits - instead of having to grow it
all itself, is rather perplexing to me...


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