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    SubjectRe: Alan Cox quote? (was: Re: accounting for threads)
    On Mon, Jun 25, 2001 at 12:30:02AM +0200, J . A . Magallon wrote:
    > shell scripting, for example. Or multithreaded web servers. With the above
    > test (fork() + immediate exec()), you just try to mesaure the speed of fork().

    The benchmark that used lmbench that was posted tested fork follwed fork
    by exit not follwed by exec.

    Although you could have used vfork in that test, the point of the test
    was to get some feel for how much overhead the fork and exit together
    had. A real application could not use vfork, because it would do some
    actual work before the exit.

    > Say you have a fork'ing server. On each connection you fork and exec the
    > real transfer program.

    Most forking servers I know of don't exec programs to deal with accepted
    connections. (The only exception I can think of is inetd and its
    cousins, the performance of which is not important.)

    > There time for fork matters. It can run very fast
    > in Linux but suck in other systems. Just because the programmer chose fork()
    > instead of vfork().

    vfork is not portable. There are standards that specify what it does,
    but the portable semantics are so useless that if you use it you will
    almost certainly wind up with undefined behavior.

    However, the original discussion was about threads. How to do fork+exec
    (or vfork+exec if you insist on using that broken interface) quickly is
    beside the point.

    > >> The clean battle should be linux fork-exec vs vfork-exec in
    > >> Solaris, because for in linux is really a vfork in solaris.

    > >But the point of threading is it's a fork WITHOUT an exec.

    > Not always, see above.

    You appear to be saying that spawning child programs is an example of
    threading. I don't think that's what most people mean by threading.

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