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SubjectRe: Linux does not care for data integrity (was: Disk write cache)
On Sun, 29 May 2005, Greg Stark wrote:

> Oracle, Sybase, Postgres, other databases have hard requirements. They
> guarantee that when they acknowledge a transaction commit the data has been
> written to non-volatile media and will be recoverable even in the face of a
> routine power loss.
> They meet this requirement just fine on SCSI drives (where write caching
> generally ships disabled) and on any OS where fsync issues a cache flush. If

I don't know what facts "generally ships disabled" is based on, all of
the more recent SCSI drives (non SCA type though) I acquired came with
write cache enabled and some also with queue algorithm modifier set to 1.

> Worse, if the disk flushes the data to disk out of order it's quite
> likely the entire database will be corrupted on any simple power
> outage. I'm not clear whether that's the case for any common drives.

It's a matter of enforcing write order. In how far such ordering
constraints are propagated by file systems, VFS layer, down to the
hardware, is the grand question.

Matthias Andree
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