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RE: [Xen-devel] Really really small xen0

To: <mark.williamson@xxxxxxxxxxxx>, <xen-devel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: RE: [Xen-devel] Really really small xen0
From: "Barry Silverman" <barry@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 8 Nov 2004 10:39:20 -0500
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Does it even need an init.exe? or a mounted file system? Couldn't the
kernel just jump into a kernel thread xen idle loop? Would it then be
possible to have this minimal xen0 linked in to xen?

I guess there needs to be some way of communicating the parameters to
the xen kernel. Is the ether bridging done in xen? or in domain 0? Maybe
it can be driven by an initrd in xen0.

Could you then still have another privileged domain do status
monitoring, and user domain startup/shutdown?

-----Original Message-----
From: maw48@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:maw48@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf
Of Mark A. Williamson
Sent: Monday, November 08, 2004 10:21 AM
To: xen-devel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Cc: Barry Silverman
Subject: Re: [Xen-devel] Really really small xen0

>  I was wondering if anyone has made a really minimal xen0 image. By
> I mean an image that doesn't have much more than the kernel (f/e and
> drivers linked in), and run from a crom or squashfs filesystem, and a
> minimal set of tools running in a busybox-like init process.

I did something similar for the restartable device drivers work in the
paper.  I cut out everything I could from the kernel config and booted
with a 
tiny ramdisk, containing only a very small init (which Keir wrote to be
a few 
lines of assembler!).  This was a bit more minimal than you describe - 
basically no userspace at all ;-)

To run device drivers, the domain shouldn't need any user space at all.
runtime footprint was about 3megabytes.  There's currently no way to 
configure bridging / routing this way tho - we'd need to add some
interface messages.


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