Subject: Re: /etc/default
To: Peter Seebach <>
From: Ken Hornstein <>
List: current-users
Date: 07/25/1995 21:57:41
>I have to say, if someone's going to mention them, that the SVR4 run levels
>were a massive boon to me as a sysadmin.  It made it trivial to
>keep several different "system states" configured and available, and switch
>between them.  How do you switch to single-user on NetBSD?

"shutdown" works fine for me (shutdown -r for reboot, shutdown -h for halt).

>I believe it's some kluge like 'kill init with a magic signal'.  I recall that
>it hung any system I tried it on (netbsd-current 68k, two different versions).
>What if you want to bring the system up multi-user, but sans network, since
>your ppp provider is down?

I'm not sure of the mechanism used by shutdown, but it's certainly worked
a long time for me (at least since the old, old, 0.9 days).

I don't have much of need to start up with networking off - if I don't
want networking, I just run "ppp-off" from the shell; pppd gets killed
and I'm fine by myself (in fact, my default mode is to boot up without
networking - if I decide to run networking, I start up pppd, but that's
the only difference).  I run a named locally so my local DNS queries
don't time out, so it's not a big problem for me, but I do see your
point.  I think, however, you could solve this by having some sort of
prompt in the boot script or do something along the lines of the fastboot
hack (call it "nonetboot :-) ).

>A smart set of defaults files would fix these problems.  For instance, the
>system could know that, at run level two, it uses /etc/hosts, and at run level
>three, it uses DNS and talks to a nearby nameserver - a nameserver which is
>not available when the net feed is down.  There does not appear to be any way
>to do this right now; if my nameserver is down, my machine hangs on name

No offense, but how is this done with SVR4 runlevels?  At different runlevels
does it copy the right config files to the right locations, or does the
system magically "know" which runlevel it's at and what to do for each case?
(On those systems that I used to administer that had runlevels, I basically
ignored them - I never found the need for them, so I don't know much about

I did like the /etc/rc directory idea, as that meant you could add a package
that needed boottime stuff without having to edit one monster /etc/rc.local.