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I often edit /etc/network/interfaces file to setup ad-hoc connection among PCs. If I happen to reboot the system, the system waits for a long time saying 'Waiting for Network Configuration...'.

Recently I emptied the file as such and the system didn't boot (or complain) at all. I had to go through a Live-USB system and had to fill it for it to work.

  1. How is this 'networking' aspect made a 'compulsory' for booting? Can this dependency be overridden?
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  • There might be some service depending on networking to start. And you should always have at least a localhost entry in interfaces. – muru Dec 11 '14 at 0:54
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You need these two lines in your /etc/network/interfaces file always:

auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

There are system critical programs that need this local network information to operate.

See the answer here that explains a bit more about it.

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  • "... this is a new behavior, documented in the 11.10 release notes, that I actually developed together with Scott Moser as an effort to make server boot more reliable." OK! But what is this so essential "local" network capability? – Shashank Sabniveesu Dec 11 '14 at 21:05

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