Systemd In Ten Years Has Redefined The Linux Landscape

Written by Michael Larabel in systemd on 20 December 2019 at 04:28 AM EST. 129 Comments
Systemd got its start in 2010 in providing a better init system and expanded its scope from there. As part of our year-end and end-of-2010s articles, here is a look at the top systemd stories from the past distribution controversies to new features and other highlights.

Systemd certainly had a wild ride over these past ten years and is now used by nearly all of the Linux distributions out there. While many still seem to hate it with a passion, it's brought many interesting features and new innovations to the Linux ecosystem. Below is a look at the most-viewed systemd stories of the decade.

One notable area that sadly hasn't yet panned out in the systemd realm is the efforts around an in-kernel IPC implementation with the prior KDBUS and now BUS1 seeming to be stalled, but at least Dbus-broker has been offering up some interim improvements.

Linux Kernel Developers Fed Up With Ridiculous Bugs In Systemd
A patch was sent out today to the Linux kernel mailing list that would hide the "debug" string from showing up within the /proc/cmdline output. Why? To workaround a systemd bug. This has set off Linus Torvalds on another epic tirade.

Systemd Rolls Out Its Own Mount Tool
Systemd-mount is the newest tool added to systemd by Lennart Poettering.

Uselessd: A Stripped Down Version Of Systemd
The boycotting of systemd has led to the creation of uselessd, a new init daemon based off systemd that tries to strip out the "unnecessary" features.

Debian To Switch To Systemd Or Upstart
Debian developers have been in a very polarized discussion recently about replacing their default SysVinit system with a more modern init system; namely, Debian developers are evaluating whether to use systemd or Upstart.

Systemd 217 Will Introduce Its New "Consoled" User Console Daemon
Back in August I wrote about systemd working to create a new user-space VT solution that could eventually succeed the Linux kernel's VT support. With the upcoming systemd 217 release, the terminal is present.

BUS1: A New Linux Kernel IPC Bus Being Made By Systemd Developers
While KDBUS has yet to be mainlined as it was sent back to the drawing board, at least some of the systemd developers are working on a new kernel bus implementation called BUS1.

Debian Still Debating Systemd vs. Upstart Init System
The Debian technical committee hasn't yet decided what will be the default init system for the 8.0 "Jessie" release, but it still is a heated debate as some of the committee members are starting to publicly cast their views.

New Group Calls For Boycotting Systemd
A new project has been established that's trying to boycott systemd and the Linux distributions utilizing systemd.

Ubuntu To Abandon Upstart, Switch To Systemd
As a huge surprise move for Valentine's Day, Mark Shuttleworth has announced Ubuntu Linux will be abandoning the Upstart init system and be migrating to systemd.

Systemd-homed: Systemd Now Working To Improve Home Directory Handling
Kicking off today in Berlin is the annual All Systems Go conference focused on systemd and other user-space components. Systemd lead developer Lennart Poettering presented on systemd-homed as a new component to systemd that is focused on improving home directory handling.

A Two-Second Boot Time With systemd
Lennart Poettering has written a guide for optimizing systemd to the extent that a two-second boot-time or less for this popular free software project.

A New Wireless Daemon Is In Development To Potentially Replace wpa_supplicant
In addition to the BUS1 presentation, also exciting from the systemd.conf 2016 conference is a thorough walkthrough of a new wireless daemon for Linux being developed by Intel's Open-Source Technology Center.

Systemd Developers Did NOT Fork The Linux Kernel
Various Phoronix readers have written in this weekend and commented in the forums and elsewhere that systemd developers forked the Linux kernel. This is not the case.

Systemd Is The Future Of Debian
Since this weekend we have known that systemd was winning the Debian init system battle, but now it's official: systemd has prevailed over Upstart in Debian.

systemd Breached One Million Lines Of Code In 2017
Systemd had a busy 2017 and its code-base is now up to over one million lines.

KDBUS & Systemd Now Yields A Working System
Open-source developers this week achieved a pleasant late Christmas present for Fedora users of having a working system with using the in-development Linux kernel DBus implementation (KDBUS) paired with the latest systemd code can now yield a booting system.

The NSA Is Looking At Systemd's KDBUS
The latest "news tip" is from a Phoronix reader who expressed "concerns" that at least one NSA security analyst is going through the code for KDBUS, the systemd-backed in-kernel IPC mechanism that's planning for integration in Linux 4.3.

Gummiboot UEFI Boot Loader To Be Added To Systemd
The newest feature being worked on for systemd? A boot loader, of course! It was revealed this weekend that systemd developers are looking at integrating Gummiboot into systemd.

Systemd Gains IP Forwarding, IP Masquerading & Basic Firewall Controls
The systemd project is off to a quick start in 2015 with already seeing over 200 commits (granted, in 2014 systemd development skyrocketed with nearly 5,000 commits). With the newest work that's landed, the networkd component to systemd has been improved with new features.

A Major Music Company Now Backs Systemd In Debian
Yesterday on Phoronix I mentioned Debian looked to be leaning in favor of using systemd over Upstart for its default init system given the latest comments by the technical committee members. The latest support for systemd in Debian comes from a streaming music company that's a major user of Debian GNU/Linux.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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