init is the driving force that keeps our Linux box alive and is also the one that can put it to death. This article summarizes why init is so powerful and how you can instruct it to behave differently from its default behaviour. (Yes, init is powerful, but the superuser rules over init.)
Debian 2.0

At the time of writing, Debian 2.0 is being released to the public, and I suspect it will be in wide use by the time you read this article.

Although the structure of system initialization is the same, it is interesting to note that the developers managed to make it faster. Instead of executing the files in /etc/rc2.d, the script /etc/init.d/rc can now source (read) them, without spawning another shell. Whether to execute or source them is controlled by the file name: executables whose name ends in .sh are sourced, the other ones are executed. The trick is shown in the following few lines:

case "$i" in
            # Source shell script for speed.
            trap - INT QUIT TSTP
            set start; . $i
            ) ;;
            # No sh extension, so fork subprocess.
            $i start ;;

The speed benefit is quite noticeable.

is a Stone Age guy who runs old hardware, rides an old bike and drives an old car. He enjoys hunting (using grep) through his (old) file system for information that can be converted from C language to English or Italian. If he's not reading e-mail at, then he's doing something else.


One Click, Universal Protection: Implementing Centralized Security Policies on Linux Systems

As Linux continues to play an ever increasing role in corporate data centers and institutions, ensuring the integrity and protection of these systems must be a priority. With 60% of the world's websites and an increasing share of organization's mission-critical workloads running on Linux, failing to stop malware and other advanced threats on Linux can increasingly impact an organization's reputation and bottom line.

Learn More

Sponsored by Bit9

Linux Backup and Recovery Webinar

Most companies incorporate backup procedures for critical data, which can be restored quickly if a loss occurs. However, fewer companies are prepared for catastrophic system failures, in which they lose all data, the entire operating system, applications, settings, patches and more, reducing their system(s) to “bare metal.” After all, before data can be restored to a system, there must be a system to restore it to.

In this one hour webinar, learn how to enhance your existing backup strategies for better disaster recovery preparedness using Storix System Backup Administrator (SBAdmin), a highly flexible bare-metal recovery solution for UNIX and Linux systems.

Learn More

Sponsored by Storix