need swap when installing from CD host system?

Dagmar d'Surreal dagmar at speakeasy.net
Wed Oct 23 10:37:01 PDT 2002


On Wed, 23 Oct 2002, Eric Miller wrote:

> You are a mindreader.  These are perfect, and I will read the HOWTO for
> questions 4-54. :)
>
> One more question:  will I run into problems when I chroot if I don't have a
> swap partition set up on the physical disk?  It seems that the CD systems
> use RAMdisk for swap (Im guessing) but I am concerned that I will have
> problems when I chroot if there is not a swap identified on the HDD.

Think about that one a moment... Using RAM to make a substitute for a
substitute for RAM.  Most of them simply expect you to have enough RAM to
not need swap, or they make a swap _file_ on whatever disk you let them
write to, which is just a more elegant way of putting a swap partition
inside a flat file and mounting it.  (Unlike certain other operating
systems which we won't mention, linux swap files won't throb and pulsate
in size.  Make 'em 128Mb or 256Mb in size and just unmount and nuke 'em
when you're done.)

Since swap is something handled entirely in kernel-space, it's effectively
a non-issue.  You don't have to worry about doing anything swap-related
while you're in the chrooted environment.  If the kernel runs low and RAM
and needs to swap something out, it will, no matter which side of the
fence you're on.  If you're out of memory and have no swap at all, the
machine dies.  ;)  j/k.

Minor note: 64Mb of RAM will not be enough to build a whole hell of a lot
without some patches to libtool (without some swap disk).  Evolution in
particular exposes a nasty bug in libtool 1.4.2 that causes it to not
realize when it's being handled multiple incidences of the same library to
look at.  Before I got those patches, that sucker could and would go all
the way to 96Mb of memory during building at times.

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