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Re: Lost file-system story
My impression is that you are asking for the impossible.
The underlying misconception (which I know very well for suffering from it
myself) is that a filesystem aims at keeping the on-disc metadata consistent
and that tools like fsck are intended to rapair any inconsistencies happening
This, I learned, is not true.
The point of syncronous metadata writes, soft dependency metadata write
re-ordering, logging/journaling/WAPBL and whatnot is _not_ to keep the on-disc
metadata consistent. The sole point is to, under all adverse conditions, leave
that metadata in a state that can be _put back_ into a consistent state
(peferrably reflecting an in-memory state not too far back from the time of the
crash) by fsck, on-mount journal replay or whatever.
That difference becomes perfectly clear with journalling. After an unclean
shutdown, the on-disc metadata need not be consistent. But the journal enables
putting it back into a consistent state quite easily.
So fsck is not aimed at and does not claim to be able to recover from random
inconsistencies in the on-disc metadata. It is aimed at repairing those
inconsistencies that can occur because a crash _given the metadata was written
FreeBSD's background fsck, by the way, is aimed at reparing only those
inconsistencies that can occur given the metadata was written with softep's
Of course, keeping the on-disc metadata in a ``repairable'' state incurs a
So you seem to be asking for the File System Holy Grail: a file system that is
as fast as asyncronous metadata writes, yet able to survive any possible kind
of unclean shutdown. Such a thing, to my knowledge, doesn't exist.
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