Process interface / requirements

Process supervision

You can find the corresponding code in func gokrazy.supervise.

gokrazy’s init process (pid 1) supervises all the binaries the user specified via gokr-packer flags.

More specifically, gokrazy:

  1. Starts your binary using Go’s os/exec.Command API.
    • unshare(CLONE_NEWNS) is used so that each process operates in its own mount namespace.
    • The stdout and stderr file descriptors are hooked up to a ring buffer and can be viewed via gokrazy’s web interface.
    • Extra command-line flags or environment variables can be specified using per-package configuration.
  2. When your binary’s process exits, gokrazy restarts it!
    • If the process exits with status code 0 (or 125), gokrazy will stop supervision. Exiting immediately with status code 0 when the GOKRAZY_FIRST_START=1 environment variable is set means “don’t start the program on boot”

Environment variables

gokrazy sets the HOME environment variable to HOME=/perm/<cmd>, where <cmd> is the name of your binary. For example, is started with HOME=/perm/tailscaled.

When your binary is first started, gokrazy sets the GOKRAZY_FIRST_START=1 environment variable.

Privilege dropping / security

An easy way to implement privilege dropping in Go is to re-execute the process with syscall.SysProcAttr fields set. For example, this is how you would drop privileges to user nobody (uid/gid 65534):

// mustDropPrivileges re-executes the program in a child process,
// dropping root privileges to user nobody.
func mustDropPrivileges() {
	if os.Getenv("NTP_PRIVILEGES_DROPPED") == "1" {

	cmd := exec.Command(os.Args[0])
	cmd.Env = append(os.Environ(), "NTP_PRIVILEGES_DROPPED=1")
	cmd.Stdout = os.Stdout
	cmd.Stderr = os.Stderr
	cmd.SysProcAttr = &syscall.SysProcAttr{
		Credential: &syscall.Credential{
			Uid: 65534,
			Gid: 65534,