Thursday, May 3, 2007

MOAM-CD 0.1 released

I have released MOAM-CD 0.1 today. This is still an early developers-only release. It took me over a day to figure out how to get initrd to work. Not only must it use a filesystem with a 1024 byte block size, but the documentation on how to get out an initrd forgets to mention that the kernel will panic unless you do this before the pivot_root() then chroot() commands:

echo 256 > /proc/sys/kernel/real-root-dev

I only figured this out from looking at the initrd included with KNOPPIX/DSL. Can you say crappy documentation?

Once I got past that hump, it was fairly easy to get other things to work. DNS resolution doesn't work in GLIBC unless you have a /lib/ file; the libnss documentation explains all this very clearly so it was tirivial to resolve. I also now have a development environment; I can use MOAM-CD to compile and test MaraDNS. This allows me to perform MaraDNS development when I am out and about, and hopefully allow me to more quickly respond to MaraDNS bug reports and support requests. I also added the real version of wget for downloading web pages. The entire system is still smaller than a business card CD--about 48 megs in size.

It's really easy on the eyes. I like being able to look at 800x600 refreshed at over 70hz. Doesn't give me the headaches a 60hz screen gives me. If it were only possible to have Vesa refresh at 70hz.

The next thing I will work on is security. Basically, I need to get iptables to work so the X server can not be remotely accessed. Once I do that, some other things I need to do:
  • Fix X so I can start X as a non-root user
  • Fix Xkb so I can have a non-US keymap so it is possible for me to type in accents (This one is important; right now I have to write to my Latino friends in Spanish without accents. Ugh)
  • Add a real version of the patch program (for MaraDNS work)
  • Maybe add a MSN-compatible IM client so I can chat with my friends who prefer IMs over email

MOAM-CD can be downloaded at (sig)

Yes, I'm neglecting MaraDNS. I promise to look at the two bug reports before the end of this weekend. I've been neglecting a lot and working really hard on getting this mini distribution of Linux going.