A few random thoughts

Jim Mischel jim at mischel.com
Mon Sep 2 13:20:35 PDT 2002

I stumbled across LFS a little over a year ago, but didn't have the
opportunity to actually do anything with it until recently.  Friday I
cobbled together another computer out of spare parts, intending to use it
for my internal DNS, a little web server, FTP, and some other stuff.  Just
hooked to my cable modem, you know, so that I can get to stuff when I'm away
from home.

I'm not a computer newbie by any stretch of the imagination.  My Linux
experience is somewhat limited, though.  Which is one reason I'm doing the
LFS thing.  I can't think of a better way to learn.  It reminds me of my
CP/M days, when I had to write the BIOS for my weird homebrew system.  What
a way to learn an operating system.  (And, yes, I'm quite aware of the
difference in complexity between CP/M and Linux.)

Anyway, so Saturday I did a minimal SuSE 8.0 install on a 1GB partition,
downloaded the LFS book and packages from the Texas mirror, and I'm working
my way through it.  Right now I'm on the glibc step of Chapter 6.  I have a
few observations, and a couple of questions (mostly of the "curious" type,
if you get my drift).

And, please, none of this is intended to flame LFS.  I'm seriously impressed
with what you folks have done here, and happy that I can use it.

Does the book tell what kind of machine was used to obtain those estimated
build times?  I don't know what kind of machine those timings are for, but
it ain't a 200 MHz Pentium with 64 MB of RAM.  The glibc build, estimated at
46 minutes, is still going after almost three hours.

How the heck do I tell what version of glibc or the Linux kernel is running?
If I'm on a system that has rpm installed, I can use rpm -qa | grep glibc to
determine the glibc version.  What if there's no rpm?  For the kernel, I
finally tried 'cat /proc/version', and that gave me the info I needed.
Several places in the book say "if you're running glibc-x.x.x...", but don't
say how to check.

Actually, this message is turning out to be pretty big.  I have a number of
other questions, and some suggestions for improvement, but don't want to
drive you guys crazy.  Is this the right place to post this type of thing,
or should I use a different group?

Thanks for the help.

Jim Mischel

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