Much of modern computer hardware is self-monitoring and self-correcting. It tests itself and reports real and impending errors so that preemptive maintenance can be performed, often in the form of “hot swap” components that can be replaced without interrupting system activity. What would a similar approach to system software look like? It would need a framework for identifying and classifying services and their dependencies, for monitoring and reporting their status, and for some form of autorecovery. UNIX has historically lacked such a framework, relying instead on ad hoc solutions to determine which services are running, which services are not running that should be and why, and which potential services are available.
KeywordsOnline State Modern Computer Hardware Local File System Manifest File Boot Time
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