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post #11 of 46
Ahh lol I really haven't payed attention. =P I normally compile my own kernels for a distro anyways, recently it's to the zen git.
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post #12 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by nathris View Post
Actually the Arch kernel only has ONE patch applied to it, and it adds support for AUFS2, which is something I probably would have stripped from the kernel anyway.

http://projects.archlinux.org/linux-...t/tree/patches
That is not the only patch as far as I can tell which makes sense since patching would be necessary or pacman would outright sux and it doesn't. There is also the "gen_kernel-patch" but more importantly, did you download a truly vanilla kernel from kernel.org

or the

linux-2.6-ARCH-2.6.37.tar.gz? ....

which is already patched?
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post #13 of 46
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet2 View Post
That is not the only patch as far as I can tell which makes sense since patching would be necessary or pacman would outright sux and it doesn't. There is also the "gen_kernel-patch" but more importantly, did you download a truly vanilla kernel from kernel.org

or the

linux-2.6-ARCH-2.6.37.tar.gz? ....

which is already patched?
http://www.kernel.org/pub/linux/kern...2.6.37.tar.bz2

gen_kernel-patch is nothing more than a script that applies the patches.

I've compared the change logs with slackware and arch. The only difference is that Arch updates more, Slackware will use additional security patches, and that the Arch kernel has AUFS2 support.
    
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post #14 of 46
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.
    
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post #15 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by randomizer View Post
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
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post #16 of 46
*** kernel are you running? My kernel is 1.8MB, I couldn't imagine making it too much smaller. That's vanilla with BFS/BFQ patches, 2.6.37 that I compiled a couple days ago. Certain things like the timing help, as well as hardware specific, but most modules don't make too much overhead. The only major thing I could see you doing for multimedia/audio would be to remove ALSA and put in OSS4 to get < 7ms latency and such.
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post #17 of 46
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet2 View Post
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.
Did that. Also lightly followed this: https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php...Kernel_Hacking

Quote:
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.
I think you just configured your kernel wrong. I did that once and ran into issues.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mushroomboy View Post
*** kernel are you running? My kernel is 1.8MB, I couldn't imagine making it too much smaller. That's vanilla with BFS/BFQ patches, 2.6.37 that I compiled a couple days ago. Certain things like the timing help, as well as hardware specific, but most modules don't make too much overhead. The only major thing I could see you doing for multimedia/audio would be to remove ALSA and put in OSS4 to get < 7ms latency and such.
My kernel is 1.6MB.
    
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post #18 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by mushroomboy View Post
*** kernel are you running? My kernel is 1.8MB, I couldn't imagine making it too much smaller. That's vanilla with BFS/BFQ patches, 2.6.37 that I compiled a couple days ago. Certain things like the timing help, as well as hardware specific, but most modules don't make too much overhead. The only major thing I could see you doing for multimedia/audio would be to remove ALSA and put in OSS4 to get < 7ms latency and such.
I am presently running 2.6.36 with no patches just configured as shown below and as I stated it is 2.4MB and started as 5.3MB. I can't get a lot smaller than that because I have lots of peripherals, and enable a number of debug and Magic-SysRQ and scheduling features. Kudos on a 1.8MB but I'm certain that is the lower limit on any fairly modern machine and a 2.6 kernel. The last time I had a kernel for a Desktop box that would still fit on a 1.44MB floppy was on a Socket 370 box running 2.4.26. While it is true that each individual module has fairly low overhead, it is not zero and there are hundreds of 'em.

OSS4 does not support my soundcard and has no latency advantage over Alsa. Also, unless things have changed rather drastically and very recently, OSS4 does not play nice with Jack-Audio-Connection-Kit which is essential for Ardour and every other pro level sound app.

Just for consideration here's a few quotes from the Alsa Low Latency Wiki. The first one says something about Alsa combined with Jack latency but the 2nd one is more on topic since it tells some of how to configure a low latency kernel

Alsa-Jack Latency
Quote:
Even though the kernel may be real-time capable, jackd may not run with a frame size of 16, which is 0.667ms latency with 2 periods/buffers
Kernel Mods
Quote:
Navigate to the “Processor type and features†category. There will be an option “Preemption modeâ€. Set this to “Complete Preemption (Real Time)â€.

There are also some additional tweaks which are commonly recommended by the Linux Audio Users community:

enable deadline as the default IO scheduler (Block Layer -> IO Schedulers),
enable HPET timer support (Processor type and features),
enable enhanced real time clock support (Device Drivers -> Character Devices),
disable priority inheritance debugging (Device Drivers -> Character Devices), and
enable the high precision event timer (Device Drivers -> Character Devices).
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post #19 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet2 View Post
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.
Interesting, I hadn't thought of that, largely because I know that the current kernel can be replaced with a newer version (the kernel image on disk, not the kernel in RAM, I don't know about that), and if it is being repeatedly read from the disk then I would assume that it would:

1) potentially cause problems if it is unpacked during an upgrade, and
2) upgrade the kernel in RAM; I'm fairly sure I need to reboot (or use some voodoo to replace a running kernel) to make a kernel upgrade take effect though.

Regarding kernel sizes, the type of compression used is going to affect that as well. Arch uses LZMA by default I think?
    
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post #20 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet2 View Post
I am presently running 2.6.36 with no patches just configured as shown below and as I stated it is 2.4MB and started as 5.3MB. I can't get a lot smaller than that because I have lots of peripherals, and enable a number of debug and Magic-SysRQ and scheduling features. Kudos on a 1.8MB but I'm certain that is the lower limit on any fairly modern machine and a 2.6 kernel. The last time I had a kernel for a Desktop box that would still fit on a 1.44MB floppy was on a Socket 370 box running 2.4.26. While it is true that each individual module has fairly low overhead, it is not zero and there are hundreds of 'em.

OSS4 does not support my soundcard and has no latency advantage over Alsa. Also, unless things have changed rather drastically and very recently, OSS4 does not play nice with Jack-Audio-Connection-Kit which is essential for Ardour and every other pro level sound app.

Just for consideration here's a few quotes from the Alsa Low Latency Wiki. The first one says something about Alsa combined with Jack latency but the 2nd one is more on topic since it tells some of how to configure a low latency kernel

Alsa-Jack Latency


Kernel Mods
There has actually been debate over ALSA being extremely bad, having problems with latency with a lot of things. I've read reports of audio developers give details of how just OSS4 bringing in internal mixing, which is what introduced the best solution. The user space mixing causes the worst latency issues.

There is also ways to get jack running with OSS4, as jack does have an OSS output itself. I've gotten this to work once, how I don't remember. I'm not saying it's the only solution, if yours works now I wouldn't bother. It's just that OSS4 is in itself much better than ALSA, the problem with most of this has become the application interface to OSS4. They did disappear for a long time, which was their own fault.

[edit] I guess you probably aren't using user space mixing when you do audio production, which would seem reasonable if you've tweaked the system. The thing is that OSS4 does that natively, which gives you the ability to focus elsewhere on better tweaks.
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