monochromatic

monochromatic blog: http://blog.z3bra.org
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commit ae43d9c7115b411fde59290cc96072ce2344757b
parent f4e94709b37a9edfb1d118a8f916fd4794a46c2f
Author: z3bra <willyatmailoodotorg>
Date:   Tue, 19 Jan 2016 20:58:47 +0100

[draft] make your own distro

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2016/01/make-your-own-distro.txt | 66++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
1 file changed, 66 insertions(+), 0 deletions(-)

diff --git a/2016/01/make-your-own-distro.txt b/2016/01/make-your-own-distro.txt @@ -0,0 +1,66 @@ +# [Make your own distro](#) +## &mdash; 17 January, 2016 + +Happy new year everyone! For the new year I've decided to focus more on +projects, and less on "ricing" which bores me more and more... +So here is a fun project I'm working on: Making my own linux distro! + +I consider building a linux distribution from scratch to be one of the coolest +things one could do with their computers. And I finally got into it! + +First off all, I have never built an [LFS](https://linuxfromscratch.org) system, +and will probably never do (their documentation is great though). + +### Scope + +So here I am, sitting in front of my computer, deciding what this "new distro" +should be. I've always liked the idea of [sta.li](http://sta.li), an similar +distributions ala [rlsd2](http://rlsd2.dimakrasner.com). Minimalist systems +trying to bring fresh new ideas on the table of linux distributions. So I +decided to list the things I wanted in my distro: + +* statically compiled +* stripped down userland +* simplified file system +* port-tree featuring plan9's mk(1) +* featuring new/obscure softwares when possible + +I chose each point because I though it would be and interresting challenge, +allowing me to learn more about linux distributions in the process. I'm not +trying to argue that X is better than Y, or anyhing amongst those lines. + +### Toolchains + +There are, from my experience, three important toolchains when building a +distro: + +* Compilation toolchain +* Package management toolchain +* Testing toolchain + +Each one is as important as the two others, because they will define how +efficient you'll be for the whole project. + +#### Compilation toolchain +I am using [pcc](http://pcc.ludd.ltu.se) as my complier of choice, and +[musl](http://musl-libc.org) as my libc. + +To this day, I couldn't find a suitable replacement for GNU's binutils, but am +still looking forrward to elfutils and elftoolchain. + +To make it easier to work with this toolchain, I decided to build a +cross-compiler featuring both. I also had to create one using gcc, until I can +figure out a patch for softwares that can't compile with pcc. + +#### Package management toolchain +There are a lot of them. But the most challenging one will be the one I'll write +myself. This is why I wrote [pm](http://git.z3bra.org/pm/log.html), my pack +manager. It's still a work in progress, but it can install, delete and inspect +packs in a given directory, which is perfect for my needs. + +For the packaging of softwares, I decided to go with an mk(1) based port-tree +ala BSD. Inspired by the [morpheus port-tree](http://git.2f30.org/ports/log.html), +it follows the way the *BSD handle their own port-tree, while using mk(1) from +plan9, which is, in my opinion, more predictable. For more information on mk, +check the link [maintaining files on plan9 with +mk](http://plan9.bell-labs.com/sys/doc/mk.html).