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kerneltrap.org: XFS, kdb, kbuild 2.5, ksymops, modutils... Keith Owens Interview

Oct 27, 2001, 17:20 (1 Talkback[s])

Jeremy Andrews writes:

Kerneltrap interviews Keith Owens this week, an experienced kernel hacker who has long contributed to the Linux kernel. His contributions include updating ksymoops and modutils, both of which he maintains. He also works on kbuild 2.5. Earlier, he built the original Integrated Kernel Debugging patch. He's also working on kdb and XFS.

"JA: What are some of the contributions you've made?

Keith Owens: In the 1.0 and 1.2 days I was involved with IP masquerading and some network fixes. No traces are left now, that code has been rewritten several times.

In 1998 I got fed up with the ksymoops code in the kernel tree, the program that decoded kernel oops back to readable symbols. It was the only kernel code that required C++, it only handled a couple of architectures, it did not handle all messages and it did not handle modules correctly. I became the ksymoops maintainer, rewrote it in C, moved it outside the kernel, tried to handle all architectures, and improved the modules support.

As part of the ksymoops changes, I did some patches to what was then modutils 2.2 to improve oops reporting on modules. However modutils was not being updated, the maintainer was too busy, so I volunteered to maintain modutils as well.

I built the Integrated Kernel Debugging (IKD) patch by gathering lots of kernel debugging patches that were floating around. There were conflicts between the patches and some were poorly documented, IKD pulled them together, cleaned up the conflicts and documented how to use the tools to debug the kernel. Other people contributed IKD patches, in particular Andrea Arcangeli and Mike Galbraith. I ran out of time to maintain IKD so now Andrea and Mike look after it."

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