Subject: Re: wedges vs. not-quite-wedges, was > 1T filesystems, disklabels, etc
To: Greg Oster <>
From: Jonathan Stone <jonathan@DSG.Stanford.EDU>
List: tech-kern
Date: 12/19/2002 13:47:17
Bill, Greg, others:

I do understand the desire to support filesystems > 1TByte.
I agree that we should do something _right_ to support that.

But don't forget that there are *other* closely-related features,
features which some of us have been wanting for a long time, and we
should fix _those_ while we're at it.

The specific features we're missing which I think should be fix:
    1. Mounting non-NetBSD filesystems  (from NetBSD).

Specific features, which we currently support, which we shouldn't lose:

   2. Mounting native NetBSD filesystems (< 1TB) from other 4.4-Lite
      derived OSes.

_Requiring_ a userspace daemon, configured by some private-to-NetBSD
database/config-file option, is a big step away from how NetBSD has
traditionally worked.  Following in the footsteps of AIX and its LVM
(as Bill seems to propose) sounds like madness.

Here are a couple of examples:

*  Suppose I have a CF with an MS-dos filesystem that I'd like to
   mount on-the-fly (via a pcmia slot or a USB reader). Pretend its from
   a digital camera, if it helps.

* Mounting other Uni* filesystems. I've seen a number of NetBSD developers
  using multiboot systems with both NetBSD and other OSes. Some are folks
  like darrenr, who target FreeBSD in addition to NetBSD; I've also seen
  comments from people with employer-provided laptops running FreeBSD or
  Linux, with NetBSD in a `spare' partition.

The way I've read Bill's proposal, any of these would require both a
userspace daemon, and entries in some private-to-NetBSD config file.
That's an awfully high burden for something that should ``just work'';
does it really pass muster for what the NetBSD project has (so far)
considerd acceptable?  When compared to (say) support for cardbus or
pcmcia devices?