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Re: Naming of network devices

* Vincent Bernat <bernat@xxxxxxxxxx> [170710 16:25]:
>  ❦ 10 juillet 2017 15:53 -0400, Marvin Renich <mrvn@xxxxxxxxxx> :
> >> > With the new scheme, if I want to rename the interface to something more
> >> > meaningful, ..., and type all of
> >> > that information by hand, hoping I type everything correctly.
> >> 
> >> Have a look at systemd.link(5) which enables you to do that without
> >> debugging udev.
> >
> > Okay, I had a look...
> Not really.
> In /etc/systemd/network/whatever.link, put:
> #v+
> [Match]
> MACAddress=00:11:22:33:44:55
> [Link]
> Name=em0
> #v-
> Note the manual page has a similar example. I don't see exactly how this
> is more complex than the udev rules we had:
> #v+
> SUBSYSTEM=="net", ACTION=="add", DRIVERS=="?*",
> ATTR{address}=="00:11:22:33:44:55", ATTR{type}=="1", KERNEL=="eth*",
> NAME="em0"
> #v-

How does that help with ensuring that I type the MAC address correctly,
which was my point above?  With the state file, udev puts the correct
information in the file for me; I only have to change the interface

Your answer did not address my concern.

> > BTW, there seems to be a typo in the man page:  it refers to a
> > /run/systemd/network directory; should that be /run/systemd/netif/links?
> > I'll leave you to file a bug if appropriate.
> No, it seems correct. All systemd-related stuff look at /lib/systemd/X
> (shipped with a package), /run/systemd/X (added by a third-party
> program) and /etc/systemd/X (added by the user).

Okay, the system I looked at (which was installed about six weeks prior
to stretch release) does not have a directory named
/run/systemd/network, but it does have an empty directory named
/run/systemd/netif/links.  Is this directory for something different,
or did the directory name change between my install and the release?

> > I don't get this at all.  The previous behavior was neither unreliable
> > nor unpredictable (unless you are talking about much older systems
> > before persistent-net.rules).
> It was unreliable. Google for "eth0_rename", you'll get ton of examples
> of people with hosts that don't boot reliably because of the inherent
> race conditions. Udev people didn't invent all this just to get people
> pissed. They have fixed a real problem.

Okay, but in a previous message in this thread you said that using a
prefix other than the one automatically assigned by the kernel would be
a trivial fix for this bug.  This is a bug in the implementation, not in
the design.

> > You have completely sidestepped the question, which is about the
> > relative importance of the two goals, simple names _all the time_ vs
> > avoiding a state file.  The previous behavior sacrifices the second,
> > much less important goal in favor of the first.  The new behavior
> > sacrifices the first in favor of the second.  Until you address this
> > issue, all your explanations look like attempts to ameliorate bad
> > behavior.
> Predictable names are more important to me. Simple name should also work
> for most people (using the eno*) scheme. Maybe it's not available as
> widely as it should be.

You are again answering the wrong question by conflating predictable
names with the new scheme.  If the bug in the state file mechanism were
fixed, it would give names that are just as predictable as the new
scheme, but they would always be a short prefix followed by a single
decimal number.  I have not said in this thread that the prefix must be
"eth", just that it must be simple.  I would be happy with names like
en1, en2, wl1, and wl2.  I don't care if the numbering starts at 0 or 1.

If we can _always_ have simple names and at the same time ensure that on
reboot, the same interface always gets the same name, that is much,
much, much more important than avoiding a state file.  The new scheme is
guaranteed to give awkward-to-use names in at least one common
situation.  The old way has one known bug in which the rename fails.
There is a known fix for that bug.  With the bug fixed, the old way also
gives predictable names, but the names are always simple, rather than
occasionally being simple, sometimes being not so simple but not so
complex, and sometimes being very awkward.

The presence or absence of a state file makes very little difference.
If it can be avoided without sacrificing simple names, that's great.
But if avoiding a state file means that sometimes the names must be more
complex, it is not worth the cost.

Again, your answer does not address my concern about a common case where
the new scheme gives awkward names.  This concern is clearly shared by
others, as seen in this thread and past threads.  This concern has never
been adequately addressed in any thread of which I am aware.