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Avahi-daemon and avahi-dnsconfd

The Avahi website defines Avahi as:

 ...a system which facilitates service discovery on a local network. This means that you can plug your laptop or computer into a network and instantly be able to view other people who you can chat with, find printers to print to, or find files being shared…

Avahi is a Zeroconf implementation on Linux. Zeroconf is an Apple-based protocol which that enables users to create usable IP networks without having DNS servers. Unless you network is running Apple servers OS or is so small that there is no DNS server on it, avahi daemon is useless and I don't quite understand why it is included and enabled by default in RHEL.

Avahi makes sense mainly on desktops in networks with Apple computers. A common use of the avahi-daemon is with Rhythmbox, so you can see music that is made available to be shared with others. If you’re not sharing music or files on your system, you can turn off this daemon.

Possible drawbacks of Avahi

In case of enterprise servers with RHEL this daemon does not make any sense and can (and should) be disabled the following way

 
# chkconfig --list | grep avahi
avahi-daemon    0:off   1:off   2:off   3:on    4:on    5:on    6:off
avahi-dnsconfd  0:off   1:off   2:off   3:off   4:off   5:off   6:off

# service avahi-daemon stop
Shutting down Avahi daemon:                                [  OK  ]

# chkconfig avahi-daemon off

# chkconfig --list | grep avahi
avahi-daemon    0:off   1:off   2:off   3:off   4:off   5:off   6:off
avahi-dnsconfd  0:off   1:off   2:off   3:off   4:off   5:off   6:off

Learn more:
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[Apr 29, 2011] Disabling avahi-daemon Len

One of the things I quickly found to be bothering me is the fact that there was an apparently long and unexplicable delay for all new network connections which resembled to a dns resolving. No reason for lengthy dns resolving though. So I did a strace:
socket(PF_FILE, SOCK_STREAM, 0)         = 4
fcntl64(4, F_GETFD)                     = 0
fcntl64(4, F_SETFD, FD_CLOEXEC)         = 0
connect(4, {sa_family=AF_FILE, path="/var/run/avahi-daemon/socket"}, 110) = 0
fcntl64(4, F_GETFL)                     = 0x2 (flags O_RDWR)
fstat64(4, {st_mode=S_IFSOCK|0777, st_size=0, ...}) = 0
mmap2(NULL, 4096, PROT_READ|PROT_WRITE, MAP_PRIVATE|MAP_ANONYMOUS, -1, 0) = 0xb7f35000_
llseek(4, 0, 0xbfa7d918, SEEK_CUR)     = -1 ESPIPE (Illegal seek)
write(4, "RESOLVE-ADDRESS 10.0.0.6\n", 25) = 25read(4,  <unfinished ...>

the results shows a connection to a avahi-daemon which I have no ideea what is good for so I should not need it. I disabled it in /etc/default/avahi-daemon

cat /etc/default/avahi-daemon # 0 = don't start, 1 = start
AVAHI_DAEMON_START=0

Hope it helps.

disabling-the-avahi-daemon

The Avahi daemon is present as default and allows you to discover network resources and get connected to them.

Its primary roles are to:

Avahi is an implementation of the Zeroconf protocol and is compatible with Apple services.

Possible drawbacks of Avahi

Disable the Avahi Daemon

Under Ubuntu 7.04

If you have no use for Avahi and you want to disable it it is not enough to disable it from the list of services. You need to:
  • Edit the /etc/default/ avahi-daemon file:
    • sudo gedit /etc/default/avahi-daemon
    • Change the line: AVAHI_DAEMON_START = 1
    • to: AVAHI_DAEMON_START = 0
  • Reboot your system
  • Note: The command sudo update-rc.d-f avahi-daemon remove is not enough to disable the Avahi Daemon.

Ubuntu 7.10

Under Debian systems

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