kde4 ksysguard aka system monitor

Duncan 1i5t5.duncan at cox.net
Tue Jul 21 11:12:54 BST 2009

Duncan <1i5t5.duncan at cox.net> posted pan.2009. at cox.net,
excerpted below, on  Tue, 21 Jul 2009 05:17:09 +0000:

>> The only thing I can tell you is that KDE4 depends on NetworkManager. 
>> I don't know for sure, but I think that it uses this to find network
>> connections.  This has a daemon "NetworkManager" and it will normally
>> show as "sleeping" in KSysGuard.
>> I would first check to see that that process has been started, and if
>> it isn't, then reinstall the binary for "NetworkManager".
> That was my suspicion.  I haven't yet confirmed it, but I expect we're
> both correct in our speculative mapping, here.

[Slept a couple hours, so I can think again at least.]

Ugh!  If I turn on USE=networkmanager for solid, it (of course) brings in 
networkmanager as a dependency.  So far, so good, BUT...

But networkmanager pulls in a bunch of /other/ absolutely nonsense 
dependencies.  Why on /earth/ should I need wpa_supplicant on a wired-
network-only desktop/workstation system?  Why on /earth/ should I need 
ppp on a standard IP/Ethernet wired system?  Why on /earth/ should I need 
wireless-tools?  It also pulls in libnl, which Gentoo defines as "a 
library for applications dealing with netlink socket."  I'm not exactly 
sure what that is all about, but I suppose that might be a legitimate 
Ethernet-only-network dependency, at least, unlike the others.  Finally, 
it pulls in policykit, which I've seen mentioned various times in various 
places, but haven't yet had to worry about, so know little about it.  But 
I suspect that's a legitimate dependency for a networkmanager, so it can 
properly control the appropriate permissions.

Need I remind people that every unnecessary installed package is not only 
additional maintenance load (particularly on a from-source distribution, 
where such things count), but ALSO additional potential security vulns 
that otherwise wouldn't affect that particular installation?  Why on 
/earth/ should I be expected to install otherwise unnecessary wireless 
and ppp packages on an Ethernet-only connected system, just to get 
Ethernet-only network monitoring?

OK, so now question one is does kde network monitoring /really/ depend on 
networkmanager or is that simply something linked in for those binary 
distributions that can't be bothered to provide a non-networkmanager 
linked solid for those who don't need it?  That I don't yet know the 
answer to... yet.

If the answer to that question is that it's really required, question two 
is does networkmanager /really/ require those additional wireless and ppp 
packages for standard Ethernet/IP/wired-only network connected systems, 
or again, are those bogus dependencies only linked in by binary 
distributions that can't be bothered to provide a separate wired-Ethernet-
only version?

Thus, ultimately the question becomes where's the bug?  Because there's 
DEFINITELY a bug SOMEWHERE if I have to install wireless and ppp packages 
on a standard Ethernet/IP/wired-only connected desktop, just to get kde 
network monitoring for that standard Ethernet/IP/wired-only connection!

If the answer to #1 is that networkmanager is indeed required, it's not 
some other issue, AND the answer to #2 is that network manager does 
indeed require those wireless and ppp packages, THEN the bug is KDE's, 
since ultimately requiring wireless and ppp packages as a dependency of 
simply monitoring standard IP wired network traffic is simply nonsense.  
There may be a secondary bug as well, if networkmanager is purposed at 
general network support, including on wired-only systems, since in that 
case it's a dependency that shouldn't be mandatory in the first place.  
But regardless of whether networkmanager is intended for that or not, if 
it's requiring it, then it's a bug for KDE to be depending on 
networkmanager for simple wired network monitoring, since the second-
level requirement is known.

If the answer to #1 is that network manager is indeed required, but the 
answer to #2 is that networkmanager does NOT have a mandatory compile-
time dependency on wireless, THEN the bug is Gentoo's (on the 
networkmanager package), for not splitting that dependency out on 
USE=wireless and USE=ppp or some such.

Of course, if the answer to #1 is that network manager is NOT required, 
then we still have to discover what IS required that I don't have, and 
why I don't have it.  THAT may be a Gentoo dependency bug, or a KDE 
dependency bug, or a bug due simply to my specific config, or a different 
bug related to some other package.

The next question is where to go from here.  Will it be easier to simply 
install all that crap and see if it fixes the problem, or to go diving 
into source config options for networkmanager, to see if there's a way to 
turn off the wireless and ppp stuff in its compile time configure, that 
Gentoo missed.

Meh... I'm tired, if I do it right now I'll just let the machine do the 
work and then test the results... but I'm going to do a kernel update 
first and see if the bug I have filed there is fixed (tho it hasn't been 
closed, but who knows, maybe it got fixed in the normal process and all I 
have to do is update, test, and mark the bug as fixed), then a general 
package update.  Who knows, maybe Gentoo's included some upstream kde 
patches by now too.  Or maybe I'll decide to screw kde 4.2.4 and try the 
latest 4.3 rc and see what that might have fixed.

Duncan - List replies preferred.   No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master."  Richard Stallman

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