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SubjectRe: [Bug 417] New: htree much slower than regular ext3
On Sat 08 Mar 03 06:48, Andrew Morton wrote:
> Daniel Phillips <> wrote:
> > OK, according to akpm, data=journal is broken at the moment. Changing
> > the host filesystem to data=ordered allowed me to complete the test.
> >
> > Interesting results. Creating the initial 30,000 directories ought to
> > take just a few seconds with the index, but instead it takes 5 minutes
> > and 9 seconds, while consuming only 5 seconds of cpu time.
> It takes 14 second here aganst a real disk, and 9 seconds against loop.

The best I've seen is 77 seconds to make the directories, on a fast scsi disk
with 4K blocksize. That's a 6 1/2 times difference, what could account for

> The difference: I used 4k blocksize. 1k blocksize should not be that bad:
> something is broken.
> Suggest you test against a real disk for now. Using loop may skew things.

OK, I tested 1K and 4K blocksize on scsi, ide and ide-hosted loopback, the
results are summarized here:

Make 30,000 directories:
scsi 10K ide 5400 loopback
1K 1m44.243s 4m59.757s 4m8.362s
4K 1m16.659s 4m49.827s 1m43.399s

Make one file in each directory:
scsi 10K ide 5400 loopback
1K 2m50.483s 7m28.657s 4m8.793s
4K 2m34.461s 5m45.615s 3m0.603s

Stat the tree (du):
scsi 10K ide 5400 loopback
1K 0m43.245s 1m52.230s 0m1.343s
4K 0m1.038s 0m2.056s 0m1.016s

The first thing to notice: Alex Tomas's original complaint about Htree and
stat doesn't manifest at all here. Mind you, I did not repeat his exact
sequence of tune2fs's etc, so it's possible there could be a utils bug or
something. I'll check into that later. Meanwhile, these stats show other
breakage that needs to be investigated.

The directory creation time is several times higher than it should be, the
same for the file creates. With the index, the two sets of operations should
take about the same time. Is this a journal problem? My journal is about 8
meg. I can imagine the journal wrapping during the file creation, because of
touching all the existing inode table blocks, but this should not happen
during the directory creation.

The stats also show a huge slowdown for 1K blocksize on non-loopback, as you
noticed earlier. Hmm. First: why on the raw device and not on loopback?
Second: why does the device affect this at all? This operation is r/o. Hmm,
except for atimes. I reran the scsi tests with noatime+nodiratime and the
stat times for 1K and 4K became nearly equal, about .75 seconds. So there we
have it: several tens of seconds are spent journalling dirty inode table
blocks due to atime, but only when blocksize is 1K. Big fat clue.

Stat the tree (du), noatime+nodtime:
scsi 10K
1K 0m0.780s
4K 0m0.751s

The cpu numbers are in the detailed results below, and they show that Htree
is doing its job, all the cpu numbers are tiny. We've kicked around the idea
that Htree is causing inode table thrashing, but I think that's the wrong
tree to bark up. Journal effects are looking more and more like the real
problem, possibly in combination with IO scheduling. The fact that Htree
dirties the inode table out of order is just exposing some other underlying

A quick look at slabinfo before and after unmounting the test volume shows
that all the inodes we expect to be cached, actually are:

cat /proc/slabinfo | grep ext3_inode
ext3_inode_cache 121469 121473 448 13497 13497 1 : 120 60

sudo umount /mnt; cat /proc/slabinfo | grep ext3_inode
ext3_inode_cache 61506 61632 448 6836 6848 1 : 120 60

So there were about 60,000 inodes cached for that volume, exactly as
expected. So much for the theory that we're thrashing the inode table cache.
What's actually happening, I strongly suspect, is a lot of dirty blocks are
getting pushed through the journal a little prematurely, without allowing any
opportunity for coalescing. At create time, it must be the directory blocks,
not the inode table blocks, that cause the extra writeout, since inodes are
being allocated (mostly) sequentially.

By the way, the script is a perfect trigger for the scheduler interactivity
bug, leaving me mouseless for 4 seconds at a time. I guess I'll apply
Linus's patch and see if that goes away.

One other thing I noticed is that, when the script tries to umount
immediately after the stat, I get "umount: /mnt: device is busy", however,
after a few seconds it works fine. This strikes me as a bug.

1K blocksize, 10K rpm scsi

Make directories...

real 1m44.243s
user 0m0.142s
sys 0m3.465s

Make one file in each directory...

real 2m50.483s
user 0m23.617s
sys 0m59.465s

Stat the tree...
30M /mnt/test

real 0m43.245s
user 0m0.245s
sys 0m0.915s

1K blocksize, 5400 rpm ide

Make directories...

real 4m59.757s
user 0m0.138s
sys 0m5.207s

Make one file in each directory...

real 7m28.657s
user 0m24.351s
sys 0m58.941s

Stat the tree...
30M /mnt/test

real 1m52.230s
user 0m0.261s
sys 0m1.013s

1K blocksize, loopback

Make directories...

real 4m8.362s
user 0m0.144s
sys 0m7.448s

Make one file in each directory...

real 4m8.793s
user 0m25.262s
sys 1m20.376s

Stat the tree...
30M /mnt/test

real 0m1.343s
user 0m0.265s
sys 0m0.720s

4K blocksize, 10K rpm scsi

Make directories...

real 1m16.659s
user 0m0.152s
sys 0m4.106s

Make one file in each directory...

real 2m34.461s
user 0m23.555s
sys 0m58.533s

Stat the tree...
118M /mnt/test

real 0m1.038s
user 0m0.242s
sys 0m0.664s

4K blocksize, 5400 rpm ide

Make directories...

real 4m49.827s
user 0m0.153s
sys 0m16.666s

Make one file in each directory...

real 5m45.615s
user 0m23.836s
sys 1m6.908s

Stat the tree...
118M /mnt/test

real 0m2.056s
user 0m0.432s
sys 0m0.622s

4K blocksize, loopback

Make directories...

real 1m43.399s
user 0m0.149s
sys 0m10.806s

Make one file in each directory...

real 3m0.603s
user 0m25.568s
sys 1m34.851s

Stat the tree...
118M /mnt/test

real 0m1.016s
user 0m0.318s
sys 0m0.588s

The script

mke2fs -j -F -b 4096 -g 1024 $volume
mount -t ext3 -o loop $volume /mnt
cd /mnt
mkdir test
cd test

echo Make directories...
time seq -f "%06.0f" 1 30000 | xargs mkdir

echo Make one file in each directory...
time for i in `ls`; do cd $i && touch foo && cd .. ; done

echo Stat the tree...
time du -hs /mnt/test

echo umount /mnt
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