GmailFS 0.2
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Thread: GmailFS 0.2

  1. #1
    Leftie Linux Lover the_JinX's Avatar
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    GmailFS 0.2

    I read on LWN today something interresting..

    http://lwn.net/Articles/99933/
    Version 0.2 of GmailFS has been released.
    GmailFS is a fun hack which allows a Linux system to use a Gmail account as a remote storage device; it can be mounted as a normal (if, perhaps, slow) filesystem.
    It's a user-space filesystem written in Python.
    http://richard.jones.name/google-hac...ilesystem.html

    you will need python, libgmail and AVF's FUSE

    With FUSE a userspace program can export a filesystem through the Linux kernel.
    libgmail is a library to provide access to Gmail via Python.

    GmailFS supports most file operations such as read, write, open, close, stat, symlink, link, unlink, truncate and rename.
    This means that you can use all your favourite unix command line tools to operate on files stored on Gmail (e.g. cp, ls, mv, rm, ln, grep etc. etc.).
    sounds like fun
    will try later today.. I'll keep you posted
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  2. #2
    Trumpet-Eared Gentoo Freak
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    Sounds very much fun, but isn't it reinventing the wheel with all those good FS's out there ?

    Btw what are the most decent FS-systems ? I always use ext3 in linux. You ?
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  3. #3
    Leftie Linux Lover the_JinX's Avatar
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    Yeah, the GmailFS is just a fun hack..
    It might be usefull for using files on multiple computers over the internet..

    I personaly like ReiserFS and XFS a lot..
    Both ReiserFS and XFS are supposed to be more efficient and faster then ext3..

    XFS http://oss.sgi.com/projects/xfs/index.html

    Reiser4 http://www.namesys.com/v4/v4.html
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  4. #4
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    Those comparing GmailFS with Rieser, ext3 etc, are missing the point.

    It's a networked filesystem which uses Gmail as its "back end". It's NOT comparable to ones which use local block devices as a back end.

    Slarty

  5. #5
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    mjah slarty, good one, didn't think of it that way...

    Anyway, jinx, Is Reiserfs really that good, i always heard its not that good for smaller partitions ?
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  6. #6
    Leftie Linux Lover the_JinX's Avatar
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    Never realy tried anything below 2 gig with reiser, so can't answer that one for you..

    The only downside I have noticed to reiserfs over ext3 is the lack of quota support (might have allready been implemented, havn't checked in a while (since v3))

    I do know that reiser is more economical (space and speed wise) when you are storing lots of small (<4k) files..

    http://www-106.ibm.com/developerworks/library/l-fs.html
    Small file performance
    So, how does one go about making the filesystem more accommodating? Namesys has decided to focus on one aspect of the filesystem, at least initially -- small file performance. In general, filesystems like ext2 and ufs don't do very well in this area, often forcing developers to turn to databases or special organizational hacks to get the kind of performance they need. Over time, this kind of "I'll code around the problem" approach encourages code bloat and lots of incompatible special-purpose APIs, which isn't a good thing.

    Here's an example of how ext2 can tend to encourage this kind of programming. ext2 is good at storing lots of twenty-plus k files, but isn't an ideal technology for storing 2,000 50-byte files. Not only does performance drop significantly when ext2 has to deal with extremely small files, but storage efficiency drops as well, since ext2 allocates space in either one or four k chunks (configurable when the filesystem is created).

    Now, conventional wisdom would say that you aren't supposed to store that many ridiculously small files on a filesystem. Instead, they should be stored in some kind of database that runs above the filesystem. In reply, Hans Reiser would point out that whenever you need to build a layer on top of the filesystem, it means that the filesystem isn't meeting your needs. If the filesystem met your needs, then you could avoid using a special-purpose solution in the first place. You would thus save development time and eliminate the code bloat that you would have created by hand-rolling your own proprietary storage or caching mechanism, interfacing with a database library, etc.

    Well, that's the theory. But how good is ReiserFS' small file performance in practice? Amazingly good. In fact, ReiserFS is around eight to fifteen times faster than ext2 when handling files smaller than one k in size! Even better, these performance improvements don't come at the expense of performance for other file types. In general, ReiserFS outperforms ext2 in nearly every area, but really shines when it comes to handling small files.
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  7. #7
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    Hey thnx Jinxie,

    I still have a spare partition i will have to start using soon.
    An excellent oppurtunity to test Reiser4 than.
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