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How Linux Works by Brian Ward

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Chapter 3. HOW LINUX BOOTS

You now know the physical structure of a Linux system, what the kernel is, and how to work with processes. This chapter teaches you how the system starts (boots) — that is, how the kernel gets into memory and how the regular system processes get started.

As it turns out, there isn't much to the boot process:

  1. A boot loader finds the kernel image on the disk, loads it into memory, and starts it.

  2. The kernel initializes the devices and its drivers.

  3. The kernel mounts the root filesystem.

  4. The kernel starts a program called init.

  5. init sets the rest of the processes in motion.

  6. The last processes that init starts as part of the boot sequence allow you to log in.

Identifying each stage of the boot process is invaluable in fixing boot ...

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