[rescue] Oracle making just a little harder to keep old machines in use

Meelis Roos mroos at linux.ee
Fri May 7 10:51:12 CDT 2010

> And let me toss in a plug here for OpenBSD, my OS of choice.  It has
> a sensible -- that is, *minimal* -- installer, it runs well on old
> hardware, and the releases come out like clockwork.

I like OpenBSD for tinkering with old computers and networking them, and 
pf+carp+pfsync is one of the best firewall platforms. But running any 
demanding userspace application on OpenBSD in production? No way.

* After years it is still easy to panic the system with high memory 
pressure from one application (last tried with 4.6 on i386 and 2G RAM).

* Find a corrupted inode on one disk on one filesystem? panic. What 
availabilty - why should your system disk keep working if your usb stick 
is corrupted?

* Put a lot of files on default filesystem (17 directories times 20 
subdirectories times about 100 files if I remeber correctly) and it 
hangs quite easily :(

* Trying to access the floppy drive when no disk is in drive? Fine, but 
expect neverending spam on console and the whole machine crawling along 
very slowly.

* And that's not all, we managed to get at least one more kind on kernel 
panic in recent deployment on a dozen of moderately current to current 
PC systems.

Linux might be bad compared to Solaris when comparing these kinds of 
quality parameters (well, it depends whom you ask but most consider 
Solaris to be of quality but slightly inconventient to very inconvenient 
to use) but OpenBSD is far below them quality-wise in my recent 
experiences on trying to build a production system with userspace 
processes on it.

Meelis Roos (mroos at linux.ee)

More information about the rescue mailing list