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Date:   Wed, 15 Jan 2020 20:55:02 +0000
From:   David Howells <>
To:     Andreas Dilger <>
Cc:, Christoph Hellwig <>,
        Qu Wenruo <>,
        linux-fsdevel <>,
        Al Viro <>,
        "Theodore Y. Ts'o" <>,
        "Darrick J. Wong" <>,
        Chris Mason <>, Josef Bacik <>,
        David Sterba <>,
        linux-ext4 <>,
        linux-xfs <>,
        linux-btrfs <>,
        Linux Kernel Mailing List <>
Subject: Re: Problems with determining data presence by examining extents?

Andreas Dilger <> wrote:

> I think what is needed here is an fadvise/ioctl that tells the filesystem
> "don't allocate blocks unless actually written" for that file.

Yeah - and it would probably need to find its way onto disk so that its effect
is persistent and visible to out-of-kernel tools.

It would also have to say that blocks of zeros shouldn't be optimised away.


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