AUR keeps a running list of ALL modules ever probed on a system and allow for easy recall. This is very useful for users wishing to build a minimal kernel via a
make localmodconfig which simply takes every module currently probed and switches everything BUT them off in the
.config for a kernel resulting in smaller kernel packages and reduced compilation times.
Installation and Setup
- Download, build, and install AUR.
/usr/bin/modprobed-dbwhich will create
$XDG_CONFIG_HOME/modprobed-db.confif one does not already exist. Optionally add some modules to ignore to the IGNORE array. Some common ones are included by default.
The most convenient method to use modprobed-db is to simply add a crontab entry invoking
/usr/bin/modprobed-db store at some regular interval.
Example running the script once every 20 minutes:
$ crontab -e */20 * * * * /usr/bin/modprobed-db store &> /dev/null
Another way is to use systemd's built-in timer functionality. Refer to systemd/cron functionality#Custom/Example service files to do the same.
As mentioned earlier, this script is meant to be used in concert with the make localmodconfig step of compiling a kernel. After the database has been adequately populated, simply invoke
/usr/bin/modprobed-db recall prior to compiling a kernel to load all modules followed by the make localmodconfig to do the magic.
Using the Official ARCH kernel PKGBUILD
The official ARCH kernel's PKGBUILD does not have native support for this, but it is easily modified as follows:
... # get kernel version make prepare /usr/bin/modprobed-db recall <---- insert this line make localmodconfig <---- insert this line # load configuration # Configure the kernel. Replace the line below with one of your choice. #make menuconfig # CLI menu for configuration #make nconfig # new CLI menu for configuration #make xconfig # X-based configuration #make oldconfig # using old config from previous kernel version # ... or manually edit .config ...
Using Some Kernels in the AUR
Several kernel packages in the AUR have native support for modprobed-db in their PKGBUILD files. For example:
Find which other packages use it:
cd /scratch git clone --depth 1 http://pkgbuild.com/git/aur-mirror.git find /scratch/aur-mirror -iname "PKGBUILD" -print0 | xargs -0 grep "modprobed-db recall" | sort
Alternatively, download the .tar.xz snapshot (around 90 MB) by following this link and then clicking on the latest commit message.
It is recommended that users install the package and then "use" the system for a good amount of time to allow the database to grow based on usage and capture everything the system needs before building a kernel with a make localmodconfig. Some suggested actions to allow appropriate modules to load and get cataloged:
- Insert every kind of removable media (USB, DVD, CD, etc.)
- Use every device on the machine (wifi, network, USB stuff like cameras, ipods, etc.)
- Mount every kind of filesystem one might typically use including ext2/3/4, fat, vfat, CIFS shares, NFS shares, etc.
- Use as many applications (that one would normally use) as possible in order to capture modules on which they depend. For example, IP blocking/filtering software like AUR.
- Users who plan to mount iso image file should do so (this will make sure to capture the loop and isofs modules).
- Users requiring encryption software such as should make sure to load it, and mount some encrypted containers to ensure that the needed crypto modules are in the db.
Benefits of modprobed-db with make localmodconfig in custom kernels
- Reduced kernel footprint on FS
- Reduced compilation time
Comparisons using version 3.8.8-1 of the Arch kernel (from ABS):
|Machine CPU||# of threads||make localmodconfig||# of Modules||Modules' Size on HDD||Compilation Time|
|Intel i7-3770K @ 4.50 GHz||8||No||3,025||129 MB||7 min 37 sec|
|Intel i7-3770K @ 4.50 GHz||8||Yes||230||18 MB||1 min 13 sec|
|Intel Q9550 @ 3.40 GHz||4||No||3,025||129 MB||14 min 21 sec|
|Intel Q9550 @ 3.40 GHz||4||Yes||230||18 MB||2 min 20 sec|
|Intel E5200 @ 3.33 GHz||2||No||3,025||129 MB||34 min 35 sec|
|Intel E5200 @ 3.33 GHz||2||Yes||230||18 MB||5 min 46 sec|
- 13x less modules built
- 7x less space
- 6x less compilation time
Number of modules found by:
find /scratch/linux-3.8 -name '*.ko' | wc -l
Size on HDD found by:
find /scratch/linux-3.8 -name '*.ko' -print0 | xargs -0 du -ch
Compilation time found by entering a preconfigured linux-3.8.8 (using stock Arch config):
$ time make -jx modules