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SubjectRe: Reiser4 status: benchmarked vs. V3 (and ext3)
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Am Son, 2003-07-27 um 12.30 schrieb Yury Umanets:

> So what? I mean, that if an IO request size does not equal to flash
> erase size, then corresponding block device driver can't just submit
> data to flash, but need maintain some cache, and cache size the same as
> erase size for particular flash device. And in the case when WRITE
> request is encountered, and write sector does not equal to start sector
> of cached data or cache is empty, block device driver should read data
> from flash first to fill cache up. This is redundant IO operation.

Right, but it should be possible to ensure (by using a special encoding)
that a part of the erased block can be detected as empty or already
occupied by reading just a few bytes. Sure this is a tradeoff but one
I'd be willing to make. :)

> This is some misunderstanding :) First we've spoken about reiser4, then
> you asked how does reiserfs behave on flash devices and is it convenient
> for flash at all.

> Just make sure, that we're speaking about the same thing:

> Plugin-based architecture is used in reiser4, not in reiserfs (reiser3).
> Reiser4 is fully different, written from the scratch filesystem.

My bad, I thought you're using the term reiserfs also for reiser4. I was
always talking about reiser4 when I said reiserfs.

> > I don't see what the compression has to do with the limited number of
> > erase/write cycles.

> Compressed data which should be written is smaller then uncompressed
> one, thus, its writing affects smaller number of blocks. Each block will
> be erased rarely, that will prolong flash live.

Only when the data is in motion. Considering that most of the data is
quite fixed with only some bytes of configuration being written a few
times and an update of a few packages every now and then I'm pretty sure
the wear affect will hardly hit. It's more important, that the
configuration bits are spread evenly over the full filesystem.

> So, you prefer speed?

Yes. Especially startup times are important to us but also execution
times for cachecold executables.

> What do you use for this x86 box with flash?

This are VIA Eden boxes with 667 Mhz fanless x86 compatible CPUs. They
come in a booksize chassis and deliver pretty impressive performance for
their size.

> > Convenient only insofar that it's more reliable.
> I'd not say, that ext2 is too reliable though.

No it's not. Especially the fsck annoyance is a real killer because we
can either not run it, thereby risking an inconsistent filesystem or run
it unattended thereby risking a loss of files.

> You should take a look to reiser4, not to reiserfs. Don't forget :)

I'm aware, thanks. :)

> But I don't understand, why do you want to make changes in current block
> allocator plugin? In other words, what is wrong with current
> implementation, which is willing to allocate blocks closer one to
> another one?

> I thought, if blocks lie side by side, as current block allocator does,
> this increases probability of flash block device cache hitting (take a
> look to drivers/mtd/mtdblock.c), what is definitely good. Isn't it?

I've some doubts that placing blocks close to another wears out all of
the flash equally. I imagine something like circular or hashed block
allocator which ensures equal wear leveling taking the erasesize of the
flash into account.

--
Servus,
Daniel
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