[blfs-support] Polkit Actions

Armin K. krejzi at email.com
Thu Dec 12 16:32:58 PST 2013

On 12/12/2013 11:14 PM, Dan McGhee wrote:
> On 12/12/2013 03:17 PM, akhiezer wrote:
>>> Date: Thu, 12 Dec 2013 12:37:39 -0600
>>> From: Dan McGhee <beesnees at grm.net>
>>> To: BLFS Support List <blfs-support at linuxfromscratch.org>
>>> Subject: Re: [blfs-support] Polkit Actions
>> 	.
>> 	.
>>> I usually don't suggest things like this and I don't know if ConsoleKit
>>> can be used without PAM. [...]
>> It can be used ohne PAM: Slackware does not use PAM, and does use (optionally)
>> console-kit; ref e.g.
>> --
>> * ftp://ftp.slackware.no/slackware/slackware64-14.1/source/l/ConsoleKit/
>> * ftp://ftp.slackware.no/slackware/slackware64-14.1/source/l/ConsoleKit/ConsoleKit.SlackBuild
>> --
>>> [...] But in some of the pacakge pages there are
>>> comments like "If you don't install the optional dependencies then you
>>> can't do <description>. Armin said yesterday that PAM was almost a
>>> required dependency of ConsoleKit. Maybe a comment of explanation would
>>> be appropriate for the ConsoleKit page.
>> 'almost' !== 'required'  (of course).
>> Hopefully BLFS will continue the recent-years move towards the practice of
>> being (more) rigourous, consistent, strict and correct, about the meanings
>> of 'Required', 'Recommended', 'Optional', and their variants. In other parts
>> of Linux, there's been far too much - to put it lightly - forcing of
>> contrived dependencies: so I'd hope it doesn't begin to appear in
>> (B/)Lennux From Scratch also.
> I agree with you 100%. And this is why I hesitate to make suggestions 
> like I did.
> When something does not work for me, the situation is usually that I 
> missed something in the book's instructions or I didn't have the 
> knowledge to make it work in the first place. This was the case with the 
> console kit, gnome-polkit, polkit, xfce4 combination that I wanted to 
> configure. And in my latest situation, it was console-kit that was not 
> "helping." I know I would not have had the problem if I had installed 
> KDE, but I chose XFCE4 and had to work on the configuration myself.
> My knowledge, or, as in this case, the lack of it is usually the 
> culprit. Even after the last couple of days I have only a foggy notion 
> of how all those applications fit together and work. The piece of 
> knowledge that ConsoleKit needs PAM to generate an active session solved 
> my problem.
> Now is it the entire set of PAM modules? I don't know. I don't even know 
> if having only one PAM module will do the trick. I found it interesting 
> in examining one of the links you provided that I found these lines in 
> slack's install script for ConsoleKit:
>> cat $CWD/pam-foreground-compat.ck > \
>>    $PKG/usr/lib/ConsoleKit/run-session.d/pam-foreground-compat.ck
>> chmod 0755 $PKG/usr/lib/ConsoleKit/run-session.d/pam-foreground-compat.ck
> That file pam-foreground-compat.ck is built and installed in ConsoleKit. 
> Can it be used without the rest of PAM? If slack doesn't install PAM, 
> the answer is yes. But, how then do you configure ConsoleKit to work 
> properly. It didn't in my install.
> It may not be precise or technically correct, but installing PAM helped 
> my system to work. Is it then a "run time" dependency? Maybe you could 
> call it that.

No, it's a build and runtime dependency. You need PAM headers and libs
to build pam_consolekit.so PAM module, which in turn is responsible
(using PAM session facility) to register a local session with
ConsoleKit. Same mechanism is used by systemd-logind, which uses
pam_systemd.so to register sessions.

> This is the logic that I used when I wrote what I did. I figure that if 
> I don't find anything in the archives, then I'm the only one who's 
> having the problems, or, at least, I'm the only on who is asking. That's 
> not a basis for suggesting a change or addition to the book.

Believe me, you are not the only one who has this specific problem. I
lost a count of these people. We have a policy that we can mark required
packages only if the package can't be built without it. Recommended
packages are ones which are essential, but package can be built without
them. We do expect that recommended dependencies are honored. Optional
dependencies are what you think they are. You can or can't install them,
your choice. You might be missing some specific (and not so common)
funcionality, but you can always reinstall package later with specific
feature enabled.

> One thing that did occur to me earlier and I might as well express it. I 
> remember when the wiki got started as a place in which LFS-ers could 
> document their experiences. I try to faithfully check it when I'm 
> building, but I haven't installed a package yet this time that had a 
> current comment. In fact most of the pages are empty.
> Now that I've said that, and to forestall any suggestions, it's up to me 
> to sign up to use the wiki and document my polkit and console-kit 
> experiences, how I got taught to troubleshoot them and what fixed them.
> I'm beginning to ramble and rant and this is not the venue for it. 
> Thanks for your comment, though, ak.
> Dan
Note: My last name is not Krejzi.

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