Yenya's World

Mon, 14 Sep 2015

Service Bloat

I have (finally) upgraded my home workstation/server/router to Fedora 22. Newer Fedora releases have an anti-feature called "product": one cannot simply install "Fedora", the "Fedora Product", such as Fedora Workstation, should be selected first. For a system with X session (two X sessions, in my case), "Fedora Workstation" seems to be a natural choice. It is not: "Fedora Workstation" can be translated from Fedora Newspeak to an ordinary English as "Fedora GNOME 3". So this is a no-go.

A time ago, I came across a suggestion that "Fedora Server" is probably the closest thing to former "Fedora". So I upgraded my home box to "Fedora Server". Today, after a routine inspection of open ports on my home server, I discovered that something is listening on port 9090 on INADDR_ANY (and IN6ADDR_ANY as well). One fuser -n tcp, and I discovered that the listening process is called cockpit-ws.

Digging further into it, it seems that this is a web-based administrative interface (do you remember linuxconf, anyone?), probably another futile attempt to encapsulate the strength of all the configuration files to some useless web-based interface. Moreover, it cannot be uninstalled, as it depends on the fedora-release-server package. A side note: the cockpit-ws package contains font files, which is probably against Fedora Font Packaging Guidelines.

I wonder what happened to the "no unnecessary services should be enabled by default" philosophy. It seems that Cockpit is a blatant example of an unnecessary service, which is not only installed by default, but also enabled by default in Fedora Server 22. I recommend to run the following commands:

# systemctl stop cockpit.socket
# systemctl disable cockpit.socket

What other kinds of service-bloat did you find on your computers? Watch for newly opened ports after Fedora upgrades.

Section: /computers (RSS feed) | Permanent link | 11 writebacks

11 replies for this story:

Adelton wrote: Nonproduct

I assume you've used fedup to upgrade. In that case --product=nonproduct is probably what you wanted.

isimluk wrote: Fedora minimal

To remove unnecesary packages, I maintain fedora-minimal.rpm with various conflicts.

Yenya wrote: Re: Nonproduct

OK, how can I move an existing system to nonproduct? Is removing fedora-release-server package what I want? Thanks.

Yenya wrote: Re: Fedora minimal

Interesting. I have looked at fedora-minimal, and it looks like sudden outbreak of common sense to me. Thanks and keep up the good work!

Adelton wrote: Re: Nonproduct

That is my understanding -- it's just package dependency thing.

Adelton wrote: Re: Fedora minimal

Nice. I've installed all but four. fedora-minimal-conflicts-gnome conflicts with libxklavier but that is needed by lightdm, xfce4-settings, and xfce4-xkb-plugin -- all things I kinda like. And fedora-minimal-conflicts-anaconda wants to remove pykickstart which I have no problem with except it would take away dnf-plugins-core which sounds a bit hardcore.

Yenya wrote: Re: Nonproduct

Do you know whether a fresh install (as opposed to fedup upgrade) can also be done as "nonproduct"?

isimluk wrote: Re: Fedora minimal

Yenya, Yes. My understanding is that removing fedora-release-server is what you need. Adelton, I'll happily accept patches. pykickstart has been only recently required by dnf-plugins-core. libxklavier is not useful for me, but we could move it out of fedora-minimal-gnome pkg to some other.

Yenya wrote: Fedora No Bullshit?

Maybe we should attempt to create a Fedora spin without this bloat. Fedora Traditional? Fedora No Bullshit? Fedora JustWorks?

Yenya wrote: Re: Fedora No Bullshit?

(replying to myself :-) Fedora Nonproduct? Fedora Core? Fedora Versatile?

petr_p wrote: Re: Nonproduct

Uninstalling fedora-release* will break dependencies probably. Proper way is to have installed exactly on of the fedora-release* packages (e.g. "dnf --allowerasing install fedora-release). See []. By the way product introduction has already happened in Fedora 21. I recommend reading [].

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