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-   -   Consolekit is unmaintained. What now? (http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/slackware-14/consolekit-is-unmaintained-what-now-919732/)

Gullible Jones 12-20-2011 06:42 PM

Consolekit is unmaintained. What now?
 
So consolekit maintenance has been dropped: http://www.freedesktop.org/wiki/Software/ConsoleKit

Apparently, in the future, support for local power management and automounting will depend exclusively on systemd, or something like that.

My question is, how is Slackware going to handle this? systemd is not what I'd call simple by any stretch (to put it mildly). From what I know of systemd, switching to it would probably mean abandoning Slackware's more intuitive initscripts. OTOH, KDE 4.7 and Xfce 4.8 already depend on consolekit/polkit, and I only see them getting pulled in further as time goes on.

What's the contingency plan? Will Slackware eventually be forced to adopt systemd, or is there a better way out?

MS3FGX 12-20-2011 11:08 PM

Nothing can ever stay easy...

Phorize 12-21-2011 02:05 AM

This doesn't look good, although it seemed inevitable. I'll do my bit and ask Santa for a fork of console kit.

Ilgar 12-22-2011 01:25 PM

What worries (and annoys) me is that in the recent years the fundamental system-level software (like hal, udev, *kit, init system alternatives) have been evolving or going extinct too fast, which I believe undermines the security and stability we expect from a Unix derivative. The basic Unix principles were so carefully designed that even after so many years they can be used as a basis for modern operating systems. I see the freedesktop.org project as a positive step in preventing unnecessary fragmentation and implementing standards but those guys should think more carefully and create long-lasting projects when it comes to stuff like ConsoleKit.

Gullible Jones 12-22-2011 01:58 PM

Ilgar: +1 on that. Core system software should be well-designed and stable, not replaced with something new every six months.

There's also something else that bothers me about consolekit and policykit... They are supposed to comprise a framework for giving users privileges only as needed, which is good. But the use of verbose XML files, the way actions are referred to in the config files, and even the location of those config files makes things kind of confusing. IMO "security" and "confusing" are not good friends.

Oh BTW: maybe a dumb question, but couldn't ACLs handle everything that consolekit/polkit can except for local session stuff? And I know sudo can handle stuff that needs to be exclusively local.

(Yes, sudo is probably a security risk due to being a suid binary. But guess what, pkexec is also suid, and can also allow arbitrary commands to be executed. As long as you're giving a user permission to do some administrative stuff, you'll have security issues, most of which probably aren't a big deal on a desktop or laptop.)

BlackRider 12-22-2011 04:01 PM

Quote:

Apparently, in the future, support for local power management and automounting will depend exclusively on systemd, or something like that.
Patrick himself has claimed he dislikes systemd, but that it was not hard to imagine a future when it was inevitable.

On one hand, it is good to have some normalization between the distributions, but on the other hand, the way systemd is being handled by the developer community sucks. It seems absolutely rushed, and I bet that it will be replaced as quickly as it was forced upon us.

Hell, I really liked the old bsd-init system. Fortunately, systemd includes a sysv compatibility mode, so we will be able to make ash/bash boot scripts even when systemd is supposed to work without them.

A fork for console kit seems unlikely, as everyone seems to be moving away for the traditional way of doing things. Big Desktop Environments and other important FOSS players will surely develop only for systemd systems or, at least, mainly for them.

FeyFre 12-22-2011 06:06 PM

I always do removepkg {ConsoleKit,polkit} after slackware install and not detected any unexpected behaviour. If ti will die, I will not be sad. I really don't know purpose of ConsoleKit, but if I can live without it every day I don't think purpose was system critical.

Gullible Jones 12-22-2011 06:31 PM

FeyFre: consolekit is what's used to authenticate user automounting and suspend/hibernate when using udisks/upower. It's not really necessary in Slackware 13.37 because 13.37 (and prior versions) use HAL, which doesn't need consolekit. But HAL is unmaintained now in favor of udisks/upower (and consolekit is unmaintained in favor of systemd).

BTW, I think this whole thing is obnoxious for another reason: it's leaving the BSDs entirely in the dust. Granted that the BSDs all have godawful lack of support for newer hardware, they're very good operating systems in their own right, and I think it's neither polite nor prudent to leave them to rot.

fgcl2k 12-23-2011 07:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Gullible Jones (Post 4554819)
Apparently, in the future, support for local power management and automounting will depend exclusively on systemd, or something like that.

I though that systemd was an init replacement. Why should power management and automount depend on it? Just curious...
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ilgar (Post 4556376)
What worries (and annoys) me is that in the recent years the fundamental system-level software (like hal, udev, *kit, init system alternatives) have been evolving or going extinct too fast, which I believe undermines the security and stability we expect from a Unix derivative.

I completely agree! +1 for Ilgar too.

BlackRider 12-23-2011 09:03 AM

Quote:

I though that systemd was an init replacement. Why should power management and automount depend on it? Just curious...
Systemd is a daemon to rule them all. It is supposed to handle device encryption, hardware, power and some more things than just booting the system. The main reason I don't like it is precisely that it breaks the old "Have a good tool for each job" and brings the "Have a multi-purpose tool to do everything".

The second reason is that I think leaving the BSD behind is acting as a mo??er??cker. Could it be a calculated move from Red Hat in order to exterminate a competing OS?

Cedrik 12-23-2011 10:30 AM

This had to happen, Microsoft spies infiltrated oss teams to ensure they won't be a threat anymore. " Hey, make binary not text ".

I've even seen an attempt to convert people here:

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...procfs-918670/

BlackRider 12-23-2011 12:43 PM

Quote:

This had to happen, Microsoft spies infiltrated oss teams to ensure they won't be a threat anymore. " Hey, make binary not text ".
You are going to laugh, but I have been suspecting that some individual developers (no evidences, no names) are in Microsoft's payroll.

However, many unpopular changes, like systemd, or the new syslog system that operates with binaries and without text, come from the Red Hat universe. If I were a mad scientist trying to conquer the world, and I was trying to prevent Linux from conquering it before me, I think I would try to infiltrate my spies in easier targets :-)

Yeah, time to add another layer of tin foil to my helmet!

Returning to the topic, maybe the death of consolekit is the cause of the relative lack of updates Slackware is receiving lately. Maybe Patrick is trying to find a solution, trying to implement systemd or something. In any case, I don't think Patrick is going to rush things like this: after all, HAL is not actively developed, but it WORKS, so if things get difficult my vote goes for keeping Slackware a HAL distro and use the last upstream software which worked with HAL, until alternatives get usable. Systemd might get stable in the future, but I have seen many nasty bug reports around to say it is ready for use now.

FeyFre 12-23-2011 02:01 PM

Quote:

Returning to the topic, maybe the death of consolekit is the cause of the relative lack of updates Slackware is receiving lately. Maybe Patrick is trying to find a solution, trying to implement systemd or something.
Don't forget, there is an ARM port of slackware. If PV will search any substitution of ConsoleKit, he probably will try to find such compatible with ARM. So it can take long time.


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