Re: Make ipconfig.c work as a loadable module.

Bogdan Costescu (
Fri, 7 Mar 2003 12:46:11 +0100 (CET)

On Fri, 7 Mar 2003, Russell King wrote:

> Which version is overly bloated?
> Which version is huge?
> Which version is compact?

... and the size is not important only because we want to make everything
smaller, but because of how it's commonly used (at least in the clustering
world from which I come):

the mainboard BIOS or NIC PROC contains PXE/DHCP client; data is
transferred through UDP, with very poor (if any) congestion control.
Congestion control means here both extreme situations: if packets don't
arrive to the client, it might not ask again, ask only a limited number of
times or give up after some timeout; if the server has some faster NIC to
be able to handle more such requests, it might also send too fast for a
single client which might drop packets. In some cases, if such situation
occurs, the client just blocks there printing an error message on the
console, without trying to restart the whole process and the only way to
make it do something is to press the Reset button or plug in a keyboard...
When you have tens or hundreds of such nodes, it's not a pleasure !

Booting a bunch of such nodes would become problematic if they need
to transfer more data (=initrd) to start the kernel and so network booting
would become less reliable. Please note that I'm not saying "ipconfig has
to stay" - just that any solution should not dramatically increase the
size of data transferred before the jump to kernel code.

Bogdan Costescu

IWR - Interdisziplinaeres Zentrum fuer Wissenschaftliches Rechnen Universitaet Heidelberg, INF 368, D-69120 Heidelberg, GERMANY Telephone: +49 6221 54 8869, Telefax: +49 6221 54 8868 E-mail: Bogdan.Costescu@IWR.Uni-Heidelberg.De

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