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SubjectRe: ATA 4 KiB sector issues.
On 03/08/2010 12:19 PM, Martin K. Petersen wrote:
>>>>>> "hpa" == H Peter Anvin <hpa@zytor.com> writes:
>
> hpa> On the flipside, though, there really is very little net benefit to
> hpa> 4K as opposed to 512 byte logical sectors: the additional protocol
> hpa> overhead is relatively minimal, and as long as writes are aligned
> hpa> full blocks, there shouldn't be any additional overhead on either
> hpa> the OS or the drive side. On the plus side, you get full
> hpa> compatibility with the existing software stack. The equation
> hpa> really seems rather simple.
>
> 4KB sectors are not a win for anybody except the drive vendors.
>

Obviously. However, larger physical storage unit sizes -- 4K for
spinning media, but frequently much larger for flash, for example -- is
already in wide use, and having a huge mishmash of logical block sizes
isn't going to work very well.

> There is a push in the industry right now to keep the 512-byte logical
> blocks forever. The first step would be to report misaligned accesses
> or accesses that are not a multiple of the physical block size. Second
> step would be to eventually reject any write that's not a properly
> aligned multiple of the physical block size.

I personally suspect that that is the way it is going to go, rather than
trying to change the software ecosystem to a different logical block
size. It has been tried in the past and failed, with the sole exception
of CD-ROMs, pretty much.

-hpa


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