that old GNU/Linux argument

Ric Moore wayward4now at
Fri Jul 25 06:56:12 UTC 2008

On Thu, 2008-07-24 at 12:18 -0700, Nifty Fedora Mitch wrote:
> On Wed, Jul 23, 2008 at 10:36:58PM -0300, Alexandre Oliva wrote:
> > On Jul 23, 2008, Nifty Fedora Mitch <niftyfedora at> wrote:
> > 
> > > systematic interface between the kernel services and the applications.
> > > This interface consists of an API and and ABI.
> > 
> > Not really.  It's just an ABI, really.  It's GNU libc's job to offer
> > an API for applications and translate that into the system calls
> > defined in the kernel ABI.  There's no such thing as a kernel header
> > file you can include from userland and start issuing calls into the
> > kernel.  Kernel developers will tell you that including kernel headers
> > from userland is not kosher.
> > 
> > Of course GNU libc has its own ABI as well, and that's what
> > applications for GNU/Linux are compatible with, after being built
> > using the GNU libc API.  As for the kernel ABI, nothing but GNU libc
> > really cares about it, since pretty much nobody else issues syscalls
> > directly.
> ....
> > Red Hat Compiler Engineer   aoliva@{,}
> Yes,
> At some point it is all ABI.
> The list of system calls (kernel services) is the API and GNU libc
> does include some header file to get from the user space API/ABI to
> kernel space.
> Recall, the name of this line that joins the kernel (Linux) and
> application space (think HelloWorld, X-windows and more) is the "question
> I am asking".  Of interest the "omissions" in the list of system calls 
> commonly show up as hardware specific ioctl() side doors.
> Perhaps the answer is as simple as "glibc".  I suspect that Posix is slightly more 
> apropos.

I assume that glibc had to be re-written to accommodate the Linux
kernel. Who did that port?? Linus and his team? I would assume so, in
order to release anything compiled, or at least contribute to it in a
significant way. Who knows the -real- skinny? Ric
My father, Victor Moore (Vic) used to say:
"There are two Great Sins in the world...
..the Sin of Ignorance, and the Sin of Stupidity.
Only the former may be overcome." R.I.P. Dad.
Linux user# 44256 Sign up at:
Verizon Cell # 336-254-1339

More information about the fedora-list mailing list