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Self-Service Linux®: Mastering the Art of Problem Determination by Dan Behman, Mark Wilding

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Chapter 3. The /proc Filesystem

Introduction

One of the big reasons why Linux is so popular today is the fact that it combines many of the best features from its UNIX ancestors. One of these features is the /proc filesystem, which it inherited from System V and is a standard part of all kernels included with all of the major distributions. Some distributions provide certain things in /proc that others don’t, so there is no one standard /proc specification; therefore, it should be used with a degree of caution.

The /proc filesystem is one of the most important mechanisms that Linux provides for examining and configuring the inner workings of the operating system. It can be thought of as a window directly into the kernel’s data structures and the ...

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