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Can Mac OS X run xinetd instead of launchd and if so, how do you do it?

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I'm not a Mac expert, but why would you want to change something potentially so fundamental to the workings of the machine? – jippie Apr 20 '12 at 19:50
Some software that uses inetd or xinetd has got a version for launchd but I'd prefer to use the inetd or launchd version because the launchd version is in beta. – rake Apr 20 '12 at 20:25
I'd run the launchd version. It's the OS X way and xinetd ain't coming back on OS X. It's pretty much either gonna work or not work so why not use the launchd version and so help get it out of beta? – Colin 't Hart Jul 26 '12 at 9:40

Instead of - no. Alongside - yes. You can compile xinetd for OS X (as of version 2.3.8 I believe this goes neatly). So long as launchd isn't holding sockets which xinetd wants, this should work well. xinetd can either be started manually, or from launchd (as would any other LaunchDaemon).

FYI, launchd does emulate the old inetd (using various InetD compatibility keys), and actually has many of xinetd's function, such as resource limiting, throttling ,etc. Launchd is far, far more than init or inetd - it also replaces add, crond, as well as serves as OS X's (Mach's) bootstrap server. So "instead of" isn't an option.

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Launchd is a superduper daemon that replaces initd. It starts most all other processes so that they have a parent PID (PPID), including super daemons like xinetd.

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On OS X, launchd does more than just replace initd. It also does the work of rc and init.d scripts, inetd/xinetd super daemon, atd/crond and also has watchdog functionality. It's been criticized as anti-Unix but it's approach is very Apple. – Colin 't Hart Jul 26 '12 at 9:43

Recent versions of Mac OS X now include xinetd by default, e.g. see:


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