Re: What is 'Red Hat nash' in the boot sequence ???

From: Deron Meranda (
Date: 01/29/05

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    Date: Sat, 29 Jan 2005 04:42:28 -0500
    To: For users of Fedora Core releases <>

    On Sat, 29 Jan 2005 02:37:14 -0600, Gain Paolo Mureddu
    <> wrote:
    > Reg Clemens wrote:
    > >What is the item 'Red Hat nash' that prints in the (early) boot
    > >seqence right after the 'Audit( ... )' line.

    There's a manpage for nash: man nash

    You can think of it like a little mini shell. It interprets special
    script files at the very beginning of the boot process while the
    kernel is still trying to get all its pieces (modules, etc) bootstrapped.
    Nash is what runs much of the stuff that's configured in your
    initrd file.

    If you've ever looked at the grub bootloader configuration you'll
    have seen that there are two files that are referenced at the
    time the boot first starts: the kernel executable itself, and a
    corresponding initrd file. The initrd file is really just a packaged
    filesystem (which in FC2 and earlier was a true ext2-formatted
    bytestream, and in FC3 is a cpio archive). The initrd gets
    "mounted" into memory and is the initial RAM disk (hence the
    name initrd). Among the most important things in the initrd are
    the various kernel modules which are needed, like SCSI drivers,
    etc.; before your actual disk-based filesystems (including /) can
    even be accessed and mounted.

    Well, nash is the interpreter which does all this initialization
    and loading of modules in their correct order, etc.

    I suspect you're probably asking about nash because you see
    it mentioned during the boot and it may appear to take a long
    time. Nash itself is trivial and really doesn't take any time at
    all---it's similar to starting say the bash shell, only even much
    simpler. However it's what nash is invoking, such as loading
    some initial kernel modules. That's usually what takes time as
    some of those modules do things like scan all your hardware
    for devices, etc. Nash normally runs in silent mode, so you
    don't get any feedback. However it is possible to hack your
    initrd to tell get nash to print out what it's busy doing.

    All this is in the "mkinitrd" RPM package. You can download
    the corresponding src.rpm file to get the source.

    Deron Meranda
    fedora-list mailing list
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