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Old 03-15-2004, 08:50 PM   #1
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linux is a monolithic kernel, but doesn't it have servers like a microkernel?

doesn't the linux kernel use servers to allow hardware to interact with applications?

I thought monolithic kernels aren't supposed to have hardware servers
Old 03-15-2004, 09:29 PM   #2
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It's a modular monolithic kernel. Somewhere in-between a true monolithic and a microkenel.
You can have drivers / filesystems / whatever compiled into the kernel (monolithic style) or compiled as modules (microkernel style). Or you can leave them out.

I'm not entirely sure what you mean by 'servers' though.

Old 03-15-2004, 09:46 PM   #3
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I think he means daemons that interact directly between hardware-software.
Old 03-15-2004, 10:08 PM   #4
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yeah maybe....

sorry I'm pretty confused about the difference between a monolithic and microkernel.

from what I understand, monolithic kernels have support for talking to certain hardware and support for understanding certain commands built in.

whereas a microkernel only manages the communication between processes and hardware (through servers)

Old 03-15-2004, 11:43 PM   #5
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I think you mean services, not servers.

According to O'Reilly's "Running Linux": "The Linux kernel is a monolithic kernel, in that all core functions and device drivers are part of the kernel proper. Some OS's employ a microkernel architecture whereby device drivers and other components (such as filesystems and memory mgmt code) are not part of the kernel - rather they are treated as independent services or regular user applications. There are advantages and disadvantages to both designs......"

That being said, I concur 100% with ilikejam's comments, in that Linux does give you the choice to have certain modules either built-in or load-on-demand. -- J.W.


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