[PC-BSD Testing] Automounting of USB drives - Why is it a problem?

Kris Moore kris at pcbsd.com
Wed Apr 15 06:42:04 PDT 2009

A.Yerenkow wrote:
> On 15.04.2009 15:48, Odhiambo Washington wrote:
>> On Wed, Apr 15, 2009 at 3:28 PM, A.Yerenkow <yerenkow at uct.ua 
>> <mailto:yerenkow at uct.ua>> wrote:
>>     On 15.04.2009 15:15, Odhiambo Washington wrote:
>>>     On Wed, Apr 15, 2009 at 3:09 PM, A.Yerenkow <yerenkow at uct.ua
>>>     <mailto:yerenkow at uct.ua>> wrote:
>>>         On 15.04.2009 14:50, Odhiambo Washington wrote:
>>>>         Hello List,
>>>>         For some time now, I have been baffled by one thing: Mac OS
>>>>         X somehow has FreeBSD under the hood. When you connect a USB
>>>>         stick (flash disk, external drive) to a Mac, it gets
>>>>         automounted, yet the same does not happen on FreeBSD.
>>>>         I have seen several questions being asked on this list about
>>>>         this feature, but the answer is neither here nor there.
>>>>         There is even a port (sysutils/automounter) that I believe
>>>>         is supposed to help towards this, but again it's not as easy
>>>>         as it seems to be.
>>>>         Now my question is just one: Why should it be this difficult
>>>>         for FreeBSD to have the automount feature within the base
>>>>         system?
>>>>         If OS X is doing it, Linux is doing it, FreeBSD can do it.
>>>         Mount usb dev, work with it somehow ( copy there or from),
>>>         and then NOT umounted it, remove it.
>>>         You'll probably get kernel panic and system crash. This
>>>         happen in almost all cases.
>>>         While BSD -Stable didn't merge new USB stack, which would
>>>         behave normal in such situation, auto-mount not good idea.
>>>         That's my IMHO :)
>>>     Sure, but you haven't seen a Mac OS X panic so far, right?
>>>     Perhaps you haven't seen/used any Mac, so you are not to blame:-)
>>>     All I am wondering about is why it cannot happen in FreeBSD world?
>>     You probably not aware that Apple don't cares at all of FreeBSD,
>>     and simple took it's code, reworked it out and keep it closed.
>>     So, in this OS, partially based on FreeBSD such kernel panics not
>>     happens.
>>     But we are talking not about Mac OS X closed-source internal
>>     things? :) We are talking about "why not >>>  in FreeBSD >>>>".
>>     This _can_ happen in FreeBSD world, we need just some patience,
>>     and wait for new USB-stack being completed and polished.
>> So your contention is that the USB code (usb2 to be precise) is not 
>> yet ready on FreeBSD and that is the reason, right?
> My assumption that there must be some reason (which I even couldn't 
> know), why it's not yet merged in 7-stable :)
>>     We aren't big software company, which if wants some feature to  be
>>     completed in month - hired and _payed_ a lot of workers.
>>     FreeBSD world is volunteers world, and all software here is ready
>>     only when it's ready :)
>> This one I know:-)
>> That is why I am not throwing tantrums.

I guess my one question would be to ask by what you mean with 
auto-mounting. Do you mean you want the system to detect, and mount the 
media to /mnt/usb or somewhere, or that you want insert notification 
like with HAL, that detects when you insert a new device, and asks what 
you want to do with it.

Right now on my system, If I plugin a USB memory stick, the KDE device 
notifier pops up, and lets me know, and gives me the option to mount, or 
run other actions on the device. That seems like a pretty reasonable 
thing to do to me. I only have to click once, and my media is mounted 
and ready to go.


Kris Moore
PC-BSD Software

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