Micron 0.0.4 review

by rbytes.net on

Micron aims to replace Vixie Cron, offering the same feature set with fewer security concerns and a smaller memory footprint. Here

License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
File size: 89K
Developer: John Schmerge
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Micron aims to replace Vixie Cron, offering the same feature set with fewer security concerns and a smaller memory footprint.

Here are some key features of "Micron":
Small code and executable size - Currently the cron daemon executable is about half the size of Vixie-Cron. One of the goals of this program is to keep the daemon small as possible, while judiciously introducing new features. Currently, the stripped executable size for a typical build of this program is somewhere between 14 and 18 kilobytes on an x86 machine.
A system crontab file for running system maintenance tasks.
Removal of the stupid useless features that Vixie-Cron added to the crontab file format.
Crontab file syntax that is compatible with the original crontab file syntax.
Full privilege de-escalation for any executed job; this eliminates any way of running code as root unless you have write-access to root's crontab.
Way of selecting where job output should be saved possible targets are:
syslog, logfile, mail (not implemented in version 0.0.2), /dev/null, and stdout (only useful if running the cron daemon in debug mode).


The `configure' shell script attempts to guess correct values for various system-dependent variables used during compilation.

It uses those values to create a `Makefile' in each directory of the package. It may also create one or more `.h' files containing system-dependent definitions.

Finally, it creates a shell script `config.status' that you can run in the future to recreate the current configuration, and a file `config.log' containing compiler output (useful mainly for debugging `configure').

It can also use an optional file (typically called `config.cache' and enabled with `--cache-file=config.cache' or simply `-C') that saves the results of its tests to speed up reconfiguring. (Caching is disabled by default to prevent problems with accidental use of stale cache files.)

If you need to do unusual things to compile the package, please try to figure out how `configure' could check whether to do them, and mail diffs or instructions to the address given in the `README' so they can be considered for the next release.

If you are using the cache, and at some point `config.cache' contains results you don't want to keep, you may remove or edit it.

The file `configure.ac' (or `configure.in') is used to create `configure' by a program called `autoconf'. You only need `configure.ac' if you want to change it or regenerate `configure' using a newer version of `autoconf'.

The simplest way to compile this package is:

1. `cd' to the directory containing the package's source code and type `./configure' to configure the package for your system.

If you're using `csh' on an old version of System V, you might need to type `sh ./configure' instead to prevent `csh' from trying to execute `configure' itself.

Running `configure' takes awhile. While running, it prints some messages telling which features it is checking for.

2. Type `make' to compile the package.

3. Optionally, type `make check' to run any self-tests that come with the package.

4. Type `make install' to install the programs and any data files and documentation.

5. You can remove the program binaries and object files from the source code directory by typing `make clean'. To also remove the files that `configure' created (so you can compile the package for a different kind of computer), type `make distclean'.

There is also a `make maintainer-clean' target, but that is intended mainly for the package's developers. If you use it, you may have to get all sorts of other programs in order to regenerate files that came with the distribution.

Input and output of jobs is saved if you specify anyway of saving it except for mailing it.
Documentation does not yet exist on the crontab file format.
Need to create manpages for the cron daemon and crontab programs.

What's New in This Release:
Bugfixes to the output logging to a file
Inclusion of (incomplete) man pages
Improvement of the crontab parsing code - some size optimizations

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