Re: Kernel configuration and documentation

Daniel Barlow (
Sun, 23 Jul 1995 22:41:23 +0100

joey@finlandia.Infodrom.North.DE writes:
>What I suggest is:
> a) A document describing all the different switches, their
> advantages and disadvantages, their dependencies and
> side-effects.

It exists. It's called the Kernel-HOWTO, it's available from LDP
archives the world around, and it's also regularly posted to

> b) More (or at least any!) descriptive text while running the
> configure script. This should contain enough important
> information, but shouldn't be too technical.

That's a value judgement. I happen to believe that it already does.
I want to use a printer? Oh gosh, I guess I'd better say `yes' when
it asks me `Parallel printer support (CONFIG_PRINTER) [y]'. Is it
really so hard?

Now for the benefit of people who pay by the byte to receive their
kernel patches and this mailing list, and who don't want a copy of the
Kernel HOWTO with it, here's a general suggestion to all the advocates
of amazing fully-relational object-orientated client-server
retargettable kernel configurators that have been popping up recently.
May I respectfully ask you to either (a) go and write the amazing new
system that will wow me with its colourfulness, astonish me with its
amazing quadrophonic sound effects, and bore me to death with its thirty
minute compile times on my 486SX, or (b) take this discussion
elsewhere? Thanks.

Otherwise I'll get nasty, and write the bloody thing using TeX macros
and/or Standard ML. We wouldn't want that now, would we?

Daniel "vi arch/i386/; make oldconfig"