Originally Posted by randomizer
I can't imagine that stripping the kernel would have made that much of a difference on its own, there must have been some actual improvements to the kernel to improve your boot time. A smaller initrd would obviously make a minor difference, but after that has been unpacked and loaded almost everything else is going to be modules anyway, so only the stuff that is needed will actually be loaded.
I can. First of all some generic install kernels take the kitchen sink approach and basically turn on everything. Many of those are indeed configured as modules but that is not entirely free of overhead, Additionally some are configured as built-in. In my case my kernel went from well over 5MB to 2.4MB. It is logical, if not obvious, that it takes less time to execute a compressed file that is half the size.
Also, although he didn't say, I would be surprised that upon taking the time and effort to reconfigure the kernel that he wouldn't also make it more hardware specific such as in specific Processor Type, timing, etc. Again in my case I reconfigure for realtime, tickless, low latency (one example clock reset from either 100Hz or 250Hz to 1000Hz) primarily for the purpose of high quality music recording but it affects almost everything, especially any multimedia modules and applications, including games.
In addition it is my understanding (I am 90% certain the 2.4 kernels worked this way and have no reason to believe 2.6 is any different) that kernels are not just accessed and read at boot time but repeatedly and in their entirety (partly because vmlinuz is compressed, usually as a bzip file) and must be unpacked on the fly.
I am also all but certain that some things are going to cease to work since it happened to me when running Arch and others as well and also just makes sense, but they will work again if an when an Arch kernel is restored. However I will keep an open mind and actually also hope for success. It would actually be good to know that Slackware isn't the only distro out there that doesn't sacrifice power and compatibility for mere dumbed down convenience.Edited by enorbet2 - 1/6/11 at 10:34pm