OpenRC vs SystemD

justy123 - over 1 year ago -

Hi I am a Linux noob over here, I am new to Linux and I wanted to get Parabola, there are two versions that you guys offer, SystemD and OPenRC I sort of know that systemD is an init daemon and OpenRC is like an alternative. What is the difference between the two versions and which one should I get.

Replies (11)

OpenRC vs SystemD - bill-auger - over 1 year ago -

generally speaking, if you dont know what the differences are,
you would probably never notice any difference - the typical
computer user never needs to touch their init system - for that
reason i recommend systemd unless you have a specific reason
otherwise; mainly because it is more mature and has the support
of arch upstream

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - justy123 - over 1 year ago -

Thanks. In the future if I wanted OpenRC over systemD for whatever reason, is it possible to swap systemD with OpenRC?

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - bill-auger - over 1 year ago -

it is fairly easy to do yes - just install a few packages

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - justy123 - over 1 year ago -

Thank you :)

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - ethan - 6 months ago -

OpenRC and SystemD are two init systems and can optionally (and almost always) act as service managers. An init system starts your processes that you want to start on boot eg. ttys, udev, crond. A service manager allows you to control these processes, which are abstracted as services, even after boot.
The contention around SystemD is about how it's created it's own tools for things beyond service management eg. systemd-networkd network manager. This goes against the UNIX philosophy of programs being modular so the user can swap out programs they don't like and be able to better understand their system. Some also assert systemd is bloated compared to other init systems. Proponents of systemd argue these concerns are irrelevant since it just werks, is nicer to use, and has more support.
Which one you choose is up to you.

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - bill-auger - 6 months ago -

that was a good explanation - again though, i will underline
that the init-system/service-manager is completely irrelevant
and uninteresting to the typical desktop computer user - both
systemd and oprnec are free software - most people have no
practical reason to prefer one or the other

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - takuwan - 6 months ago -

I’ve never used OpenRC, only SystemD. It just works, indeed. What about OpenRC stability, since it’s a younger software? That could be a practical reason to favour SystemD over OpenRC.

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - bill-auger - 6 months ago -

my first post to this thread answers that question concisely - i will try to elaborate

systemd in parabola is directly and completely supported by the arch upstream; so it has more users, and more "eyes on it" over-allactually - it is less likely that anyone will hit upon any yet-to-be-seen problems using systemd

openrc has no support in arch - AFAIK, the only other ditros which use it, are artix and gentoo; so only the parabola team is ensuring that it works well in parabola - we can take tips from the work that artix and gentoo does; but they are not supporting openrc in parabola directly, in the same way as arch and arch users are - there are some bits still missing in parabola, and users need to be more diligent and patient, to notice anything broken or missing, and interact more closely with the parabola team, to expose and address any short-comings

it has nothing to do with stability (in the sense of: "reliability") - it is not going to explode - it is more a matter of maturity - openrc works quite well in parabola now, for most common use-cases - most people will not discover any problems; but that depends on what you do with it - i was somewhat skepitcal myself at first; but i have been using it regularly for about a year now, with no problems - i keep my system very lean and standard though - i do not use specialty technologies such as EFI, LVM, RAID, LUKS, disk-encryption, BTRFS, libreboot, fancy X/WM/DE such as GNOME/KDE or wayland, nor do i use luxury devices like bluetooth, HDMI audio, multi-head GPU, wifi, touch-screen - any/all of those fancy things add complexity to the system, and therefore the potential for problems - as more people use parabola openrc, more of the uncommon edge-cases will be uncovered - then as bugs and missing support are reported, support will become more complete over time

so for anyone looking for the "set-it-and-forget-it" option, i suggest systemd - but if you keep your system as simple as mine, or are prepared to possibly find a problem or two, and are williing to report bugs and experiment, then i enthusiastically encourage the use of openrc, because that would be a way directly contribute to parabola improvements

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - takuwan - 6 months ago -

Thank you for your insight.

I might consider the switch this year. I have a slightly more complex setup than you (Libreboot, LVM, LUKS, Wayland), but out of curiosity, I could give it a try.

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - takuwan - 2 months ago -

Is there a way to test OpenRC without messing up with my current systemd production-setup? Based on the OpenRC wiki page, it seems relatively painless to migrate, but I’ll prefer to be sure I can revert to systemd in case of troubles.

RE: OpenRC vs SystemD - bill-auger - 2 months ago -

ideally, we aim for init-system migration to be a painless and
fool-proof process; but it is impossible to guarantee perfection
- it depends mostly on which packages you have installed

generally, for any such delicate operation, the best precaution
you can take, is to practice it in a scratch environment

  • generate the list of packages that you have installed now
    $ pacman -Qq > pkglist.txt
  • install parabola/systemd onto a new partition (or VM),
    with all of the same packages
    $ sudo pacstrap /mnt $(cat pkglist.txt)
  • boot the new system and make sure everything works
  • do the planned migration
  • reboot the system, and see if all of your services still work

in that way, you could predict for yourself, with high confidence
(and as well as anyone else could), the result with your specific
system configuration, and uncover any unexpected extra steps

onec you are happy with the new system, you could delete the old
one; but i would not do that - it is always a good idea to have
a backup system ready to use - so the simpler plan, would be to
install parabola/non-systemd onto a new partition, then to keep
both systems installed permanently