Dracut - a generic initramfs infrastructure

Scheduled: Thursday, September 24, 2009 from 3:10 – 3:55pm in Salon CD


Introduction of a new initramfs generation tool, which creates a general purpose udev event based initramfs.


Dracut is a generic, modular initramfs generation tool, that can be used across various distributions.

Unlike existing initramfs’s, this is an attempt at having as little as possible hard-coded into the initramfs as possible. The initramfs has (basically) one purpose in life — getting the rootfs mounted so that we can transition to the real rootfs. This is all driven off of device availability. Therefore, instead of scripts hard-coded to do various things, we depend on udev to create device nodes for us and then when we have the rootfs’s device node, we mount and carry on. This helps to keep the time required in the initramfs as little as possible so that things like a 5 second boot aren’t made impossible as a result of the very existence of an initramfs.


initrd initramfs mkinitrd mkinitramfs boot


  • Biography

    Harald Hoyer joined the Linux community in 1996. His first kernel patch was the module ip_masq_quake in 1997, followed by boot support for md raid devices. He joined Red Hat in July of 1999, working on projects ranging from udev, network daemons and CD recording packages to creating configuration tools, extending smolt and writing python interfaces. Recently he stepped up to lead an effort to improve boot time reduction for Fedora 11 and the upcoming Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.

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