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Re: softdeps and NetBSD 6.0
On Sep 30, 2009, at 12:23 46PM, Aaron J. Grier wrote:
On Tue, Sep 29, 2009 at 04:51:22PM -0700, Dieter wrote:
From the discussion softdeps obviously works well for others, it
isn't just me.
There is no reason to remove softdeps. It is optional, those who
don't like it don't have to run it.
just like nobody can force you to a newer version of NetBSD, you can't
force the maintainers to continue dealing with the softdeps code.
they don't want to deal with the maintenance. do you?
I'd have phrased it somewhat differently, but in essence you're correct.
Keeping the code around and even half-way working has a cost. When
you change something in, say, the file system code, you have to make
sure that you update all relevant pieces of code. Softdeps have never
worked reliably. They work for some people, but not for everyone, and
the code has resisted fixing. What should the community do?
Effort spent trying to keep softdeps working is effort that can't be
spent on something else. We know from experience that we're not
likely to be able to get it working correctly. EVen if we don't want
to touch it because its current state of (dis)repair is good enough,
we still have to look at it when we do other things to the file
system. (I'll make up a hypothetical example. Suppose I wanted to
add more metadata to files to help with autosyncing between a desktop
and a laptop. When does that data get written out in a softdep
environment? Does it matter? That's more time and effort I have to
spend, solely because of the existence of the feature. *And* that
feature doesn't work well, and is used by fewer and fewer people
because of its bugs.
There's no perfect answer, and it's not related to developers not
wanting to support a feature. It's a question of how to apply limited
resources. The decision here is to cut our losses -- eliminate the
code, and install something else that is believed to work better and
will satisfy many (but probably not all) of the needs that softdeps
--Steve Bellovin, http://www.cs.columbia.edu/~smb
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