Re: varlinks! (and 2.1.98 works for me)

H. Peter Anvin (
20 May 1998 03:15:21 GMT

Followup to: <>
By author: Simon Richter <>
In newsgroup:
> The Thought Assassin wrote:
> > > Well, kernelspace should not mean that we're no longer protected against
> > > programming mistakes. It should just mean that we're priviledged to drop parts
> > > of the protection in case we need to access the hardware.
> >
> > But we're not... Witness machines locking hard from a teardrop...
> > Losing networking, and having to reboot cleanly, or reinsmod it or
> > something would be vastly preferrable (at least to some) to just locking
> > hard.
> What if we'd make the kernel a bunch of ordinary processes which have maybe a
> higher priority and access to the hardware, but nothing else? The only thing in the
> kernel that needs to run out of process context is the actual task switching, irq
> handling and the library functions that run in the caller's context.
> This way, if something crashes, the corresponding task can be shut down, the memory
> freed and the task reinitialized, so if IP defrag crashed, the only damage done
> would be that the fragments in the wait queue would be lost... :-) The probably
> most difficult task would be that the other tasks might need to react on such
> things and that things should not be slowed down too much...

Congratulations. You have just invented the microkernel.


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