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Date:	Tue, 19 Apr 2011 17:45:38 +1000
From:	Dave Chinner <david@...morbit.com>
To:	Yongqiang Yang <xiaoqiangnk@...il.com>
Cc:	Andreas Dilger <adilger@...ger.ca>, Theodore Tso <tytso@....edu>,
	Eric Sandeen <sandeen@...deen.net>, xfs-oss <xfs@....sgi.com>,
	"coreutils@....org" <coreutils@....org>,
	"linux-ext4@...r.kernel.org" <linux-ext4@...r.kernel.org>,
	Pádraig Brady <P@...igbrady.com>,
	Markus Trippelsdorf <markus@...ppelsdorf.de>
Subject: Re: Files full of zeros with coreutils-8.11 and xfs (FIEMAP
 related?)

On Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 02:53:20PM +0800, Yongqiang Yang wrote:
> On Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 11:44 AM, Dave Chinner <david@...morbit.com> wrote:
> > On Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 09:58:15AM +0800, Yongqiang Yang wrote:
> >> On Mon, Apr 18, 2011 at 10:45 AM, Andreas Dilger <adilger@...ger.ca> wrote:
> >> > On 2011-04-17, at 6:40 PM, Dave Chinner <david@...morbit.com> wrote:
> >> >
> >> > On Sat, Apr 16, 2011 at 08:21:28AM -0400, Theodore Tso wrote:
> >> >
> >> > On Apr 16, 2011, at 1:11 AM, Andreas Dilger wrote:
> >> >
> >> > In that case, it means cp should just always use FIEMAP_FLAG_SYNC, which is
> >> > fine.
> >> >
> >> > Except that if someone is copying a large delay allocated file, it will
> >> > cause
> >> >
> >> > the file to immediately snapped to disk, which might not be the greatest
> >> >
> >> > thing in the world.
> >> >
> >> > Obvious workaround - if the initial fiemap call shows unwritten
> >> > extents, redo it with the sync flag set. Though that assumeѕ that
> >> > you can trust things like delalloc extents to only cover the range
> >> > that valid data exists in. Which, of course, you can't assume,
> >> > either. :/
> >> >
> >> > Always passing FIEMAP_FLAG_SYNC is fine in this case. It should only do
> >> > anything if there is unwritten data, which is the only case we are concerned
> >> > with at this point.  In any case, this is a simple solution for coreutils
> >> > until such a time that a more complex solution is added in the kernel (if
> >> > ever).
> >> >
> >> > Christoph is write, SEEK_HOLE and SEEK_DATA are
> >> >
> >> > a much better API for what cp woulld lke to do.  Unfortunately it hasn't
> >> >
> >> > been implemented yet in the VFS...
> >> >
> >> > Agreed, SEEK_HOLE/SEEK_DATA is the right way to solve this problem.
> >> >
> >> > I don't see how this will change the problem in any meaningful way. There
> >> > will still need to be code that is traversing the on-disk mapping, and also
> >> > keeping it coherent with unwritten data in the page cache.
> >>
> >> It seems that we are being messed up by page cache and disk.
> >> Unwritten flag returned from FIEMAP indicates blocks on disk are not
> >> written, but it does not say if there is data in page cache.  So
> >> FIEMAP itself just tells user the map on disk.  However there is an
> >> exception for delayed allocation,  FIEMAP tells users the data is in
> >> page cache.
> >
> > No, FIEMAP does not tell the user there is data in the page cache.
> > It tells there user there is a delayed allocation extent. For XFS, a
> > delayed allocation extent can cover a range _greater_ than there is
> > data in the page cache - we do allocation allignment, speculative
> > allocation and other tricks to avoid fragmentation via
> > delayed allocation. When XFSs says there is a delalloc extent, it is
> > simply showing the in-memory representation of the extent. if you
> > want to know where the data in the page cache actually is, you need
> > to sync the file to disk to get those ranges converted to real
> > extents. This is how xfs_bmap has worked for 15 years....
> >
> >> Maybe FIEMAP should return all known messages for unwritten extent, if
> >> unwritten data exists in page cache, FIEMAP should let users know that
> >> data is in page cache and space on disk has been preallocated, but
> >> data has not been flushed into disk.  Actually, delayed allocation has
> >> done like this. Then user-space applications can determine how to do.
> >> Taking cp as an example, it will copy from page cache rather ignore
> >> it.
> >
> > Once again, FIEMAP is for showing the filesystem's current extent
> > state, not the page cache state. Ext4 may implement FIEMAP by doing
> > page cache walks, but that is a filesystem specific implementation
> > detail.
> >
> >> We need a definite definition for FIEMAP, in other words, it tells
> >> users map on disk or both disk and page cache.
> >
> > We already have a definition - and it has nothing to do with the
> > page cache state.
> >
> >> If the former one is taken, then FIEMAP should not consider
> >> delayed allocation.
> >
> > Not at all. the delayed allocation extent is a first class extent
> > type in XFS and it is reported directly from the extent list. Your
> > viewpoint is very ext4-specific and ignores the fact that other
> > filesystems were doing this sort of mapping long before even ext3
> > (let alone ext4) was a glint in the designer's eye....
> >
> >> otherwise, FIEMAP should return all known messages for unwritten case
> >> like delayed allocation.
> >
> > See my previous comments about extents being unwritten until data is
> > physically written to them.
> Understood, thank you for your explanation.
> 
> Ok.  Let's look at it from a higher view.  What you described about
> extent state is specific to xfs.
> 
> I think there are 2 ways to provide a definite definition for FIEMAP
> for all filesystems:
> 
> 1. FIEMAP returns extent state on disk.
> 2. FIEMAP returns extent both in memory and on disk.

You are *not listening*. There is no #2. FIEMAP returns the extent
state _on disk_ at the time of the call. If you want it to reflect
the in-memory state at the time of the call (for data or metadata),
you *must* use the the SYNC flag to convert that in-memory state to
on-disk state, which FIEMAP then reports just fine.

Cheers,

Dave.
-- 
Dave Chinner
david@...morbit.com
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