LSB SI Tools

LSB Sample Implementation

LSB Sample Implementation (LSB SI) is a minimal LSB-conforming runtime environment used for testing purposes. It can be run in a chroot mode. The LSB SI is not a general-purpose distribution, it's a limited test environment, and a proof-of-concept of building to the LSB spec.

Most Linux distributions supply lots of packages, and which of them gets installed, and later added, removed or upgraded is under the local sysadmin's control. Which is as it should be, except when your job is to build a portable application that will run everywhere -- how can you be sure you haven't linked in something, which is not guaranteed to present on every system you aim at? It happens that you can -- if you take advantage of the contract that LSB-conforming systems offer you as an application developer: that a core set of libraries and programs will be present, and will work in the way that is documented in the LSB.

The LSB SI is a minimal implementation of that set which can be used to test programs before releasing them to the field.

For example, some software has auto-detecting build scripts (such as GNU configure), which will enable the build to make use of many things installed on a system, whether or not those are part of the LSB. Running the resulting binary in the LSB SI will help detect cases where non-LSB features have crept in, as those features are unlikely to present in the LSB SI.

Note that the primary testing tool for an LSB application is Linux Application Checker. It is a static tool, however, and so cannot catch runtime issues, such as calls of an external program. The LSB SI allows to detect such errors by executing the application in a conforming environment.

Finally, the LSB SI stays in lockstep with the evolving LSB specification. New features appear in test versions of the LSB SI as they are staged for appearance in the next version of LSB, and the LSB SI aims to release versions matching fully approved new specifications at roughly the same time as the spec. This gives developers the opportunity to preview new features before they become a fully-supported part of their favorite distributions.

The LSB SI is not designed as a standalone Linux distribution. It is mainly an example and a test environment - the LSB project does not have the resources to track and fix performance and security issues, which are important aspects for any distribution vendor.

LSB SI Tools

LSB Sample Implementation Tools (LSB SI Tools) are a wrapper for LSB SI. They allow launching and adjusting chroot environment to run SI in a user-friendly way. Provided package consists of 2 parts:
The first part 'lsbsi-chroot' presents already built and configured LSB SI.
The second part 'lsbsi-tools' contains scripts for launching chroot environment.

The LSB SI Tools release can be downloaded from this page. Please read LSB SI Tools Getting Started for instructions on how to install and use it.