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Re: Stretch & Safely Replacing systemd?

On 2017-03-02 at 13:01, Patrick Bartek wrote:

> I've been considering Stretch as a clean install or dist-upgrade of
> my aging Wheezy desktop setup as well as to install on a new notebook
> I've yet to decide on.  I don't like systemd (why is unimportant to
> this query). I plan to use some other init system, probably runit.
> So ...
> Just how dependent has Stretch's system become on systemd?  I don't 
> mean applications or GNOME, etc. with systemd dependency that I can 
> choose not to install, but the system itself, the guts, the basics,
> the things and tools it needs to work properly.

There are two packages which are in some sense "part of" systemd which
you will not be able to avoid: libsystemd0 and udev.

libsystemd0 is the "detect at runtime whether systemd is present"
library; it's what makes it possible for programs to use systemd when
it's there, but still work when it isn't. It might _technically_ be
possible to avoid this, but one of the packages which depends on this is
xserver-xorg-core, so for most systemd that will not be a practical

udev wasn't originally a systemd thing, but is now maintained by the
systemd people, and apparently shipped from the same source package (or
at least I can't see any other reason why changes to udev would appear
in apt-listchanges under the name of "systemd").

Those are the only systemd-related packages on my current primary
machine (unless you count systemd-shim, which exists specifically to
make avoiding systemd itself possible), and I've been running it with no
apparent related issues for pretty much the entire time since the
systemd transition.

I do have to keep an eye on 'apt-get dist-upgrade' and on normal package
installs to make sure that nothing pulls in libpam-systemd and then
systemd automatically - but it's been quite a while since anything tried
to do that, and even that would only get systemd as a "normal" daemon
rather than as the init system.

systemd as the init system is provided by the systemd-sysv package. I
have that package pinned to never install in /etc/preferences:

Package: systemd-sysv
Pin: version *
Pin-Priority: -1

but this doesn't seem to be entirely effective in some cases, for
reasons I've given up on trying to track down; still, it may be making a

   The Wanderer

The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one
persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all
progress depends on the unreasonable man.         -- George Bernard Shaw

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