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HowTo: Finit on Alpine Linux 3.4-3.6

HowTo use Finit to boot an Alpine Linux system. It is assumed that the user has already installed make, a compiler, C library header files, and other tools needed to build a GNU configure based project.

To start with you need to first install libuEv and libite. They default to install to /usr/local, but unlike Debian and Ubuntu based distros, Alpine's pkg-config does not look for libraries and header files there. So the PKG_CONFIG_LIBDIR environment variable must be used, or change the install prefix to /usr.

The bundled build.sh script can be used to configure and build finit:

alpine:~# cd finit
alpine:~/finit# ./contrib/alpine/build.sh

Then run the install.sh script to install all necessary files, including the sample finit.conf and finit.d/*.conf files. More on that below.

alpine:~/finit# ./contrib/alpine/install.sh

The install script is non-destructive by default, you have to answer Yes twice to set up Finit as the system default init. Pay close attention to the last question:

*** Install Finit as the system default Init (y/N)?

If you answer No, simply by pressing enter, you can change the symlink yourself later on, to point to finit instead of /bin/busybox:

alpine:~/finit# cd /sbin
alpine:/sbin# rm init
alpine:/sbin# ln -s finit init

Before rebooting, make sure to set up a /etc/finit.conf, and /etc/finit.d/ for your services. Samples are included in this directory. Notice the symlinks in /etc/finit.d/, which can be managed by the operator at runtime using initctl enable SERVICE. You can also use a standard /etc/rc.local for one-shot tasks and initialization like keyboard language etc.