Background of LFS

John Gay johngay at
Wed Jan 22 07:53:58 PST 2003

On Tue 21 Jan 2003 22:47, you wrote:
> I have an senior project, and I want to create a linux distro but I want to
> have a linux operating system with minumum files. What are necessary files
> to run a linux (kernel,..,like this)? Can I perform this with LFS?
LFS is a good starting point for minimal Linux. It is the minimun for 
compiling on. If you want less, you'll need to figure out what to drop. 
busybox is a good place to start. It replaces quite a few packages with one 
reduced package.

> I have some questions?
> 1- how does LFS detect devices and install drivers according to devices?
I assume you're talking about kernel modules? You will need to figure this 
out. Read the docs in the kernel sources about modules and specific madules 
you are interested in. Otherwise, just build your kernel with any drivers you 
need compiled in directly. Makes a slightly larger kernel, but then you don't 
have to worry about loading and unloading modules.

> 2- and when LFS boots, which files does it use? I want to learn background
> of this project?
Any Linux or UNIX system generally start with the init scripts. for LFS, 
these are under /etc/rc.d/* and installed during the bootscript installation 
chapter. Read through these for a better understanding. Of course the kernel 
does a few things before this point, but you'll need to research this in 
kernel documents. There is lots of info relating to this on the 'net.

> 3-In LFS there are lots of packages in chapter 6? But I don't want to
> install all packages , is it possible?
These are the minimum packages needed to build a Linux system that can then 
compile anything else you might want installed. If you are looking for the 
smallest Linux which can boot, a lot of these are extranious. Also, busybox 
provides quite a bit of the minimal functionality for booting a Linux system 
in a smaller, single package. Another place you can cut corners would be to 
try uClibc insteaad of glibc. This is far smaller, and provides 'most' of the 
functionality. You can certainly run a minimal Linux with it.

> I have problems with understanding background of LFS, if you help me , I
> will be very happy.
The LFS book explains quite a bit. Read it completely for a better 
understanding. Also, someone recently posted an interview with Gerard which 
has some background to 'why' he did it.

I appreciate that you are working on a school project. And it's good to ask 
for help. However, the purpose of doing projects is to research and study the 
information you need. Many will be glad to offer pointers, tips and general 
help to guide you in the right direction, but you will be expected to then 
read that info and figure out how to apply it to your project. I've given you 
some of the pointers and tips that I think might help you. Others might have 
better info than I have. And many will say 'Do it yourself'.

I hope this info is helpful towards your project.


	John Gay
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