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Old 06-14-2020, 06:51 PM   #1
Daowulf
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Need distribution with minimal dependence on automated/default daemons


Hello,

I am switching from MacOS to Linux because the number of daemon (perpetual background) processes required for MacOS to run properly has gotten out of control. I expect most Linux distributions rely much less on automated/default daemon processes, but knowing which ones do this best (or which ones do it worst, to be avoided) is what I'm after. Essentially, the number of processes reported by "ps ax" needs to be minimized.

Several distributions aim for a minimalist environment, but I think this refers mainly to a smaller installed base of packages and possibly a simplified windowing environment. These goals aren't the same as reducing the operating system's dependance on daemons, but I'm here to learn about distributions, hence my query.

Related to this daemon proliferation (in MacOS) is the use of large numbers of files to serve as databases, of sorts, for the daemons. I don't know whether this happens as much on Linux, but eliminating this file system usage is part of the motivation for getting rid of daemons.

A lot of spyware/malware comes in the form of daemon processes. Getting rid of these is without question. I am instead referring to reducing/eliminating any legitimate dependence on daemons.

Thanks

Last edited by Daowulf; 06-15-2020 at 06:19 PM. Reason: clarification
 
Old 06-14-2020, 08:02 PM   #2
berndbausch
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Arch Linux allows/requires you to state precisely which services you want when you install your system.

Slackware also forces you to intimately know each bit of your system if you want it to be well-managed.

While Gentoo's goal is performance, it also requires you to consciously add the services that you need while installing.

In general, look for distros that don't give you an ISO you put into the drive and blindly install, but ask you to build the system rather than install it.
 
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Old 06-14-2020, 08:04 PM   #3
EdGr
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A lot of daemons are part of desktop environments. You want to choose a distro that offers plain window managers. There are plenty to choose from. I see 25 daemons running with Slackware and Blackbox.

Daemons are not necessarily bad as long as they are not consuming CPU cycles. When my computers are idle, the load average really does fall to within rounding range of zero. I check this whenever I make changes to the system.

Code:
% uptime
 18:04:29 up  3:47,  1 user,  load average: 0.00, 0.00, 0.08
Ed
 
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Old 06-14-2020, 08:12 PM   #4
frankbell
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I just booted clean into Slackware, which by default boots to the command line.

After the clean boot, 36 processes/daemons were running. (Some of the processes were not daemons, but processes directly connected to the shell.)

I started KDE and checked again, and 237 processes/daemons are running, confirming what EdGr said above.

As aside, I am skeptical that the sheer number of daemons is a reliable guage. Rather, it seems to me that their legitimacy is.
 
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Old 06-14-2020, 10:32 PM   #5
syg00
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daowulf View Post
A lot of spyware/malware comes in the form of daemon processes.
Any half-decent malware will download and daemonize itself at run-time. Your house-cleaning efforts will be almost entirely ceremonial.

I can understand having a jaundiced view of Apple, but you might find things are better in a FOSS environment.
 
Old 06-15-2020, 03:29 PM   #6
ondoho
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I think Daowulf is confused about what is a legitimate software daemon on your system, and an illegitimate spy/malware daemon.
Speaking for the legitimate: I agree that this is something to think about.
I myself use and prefer ArchLinux, because it's very minimal and unlikely to enable daemons willi-nilly without the user explicitely requesting this. However, it also likes to stick to upstream defaults, and in the case of systemd that could mean that there's a few more daemons around than strictly necessary. Not my sentiment, but something to consider.
Also keep in mind that installing a mainstream desktop environment will pull in a lot of daemons and stuff.
 
  


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