Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Data Storage Software Linux

Ext4 Advances As Interim Step To Btrfs 510

Posted by kdawson
from the butter-is-better dept.
Heise.de's Kernel Log has a look at the ext4 filesystem as Linus Torvalds has integrated a large collection of patches for it into the kernel main branch. "This signals that with the next kernel version 2.6.28, the successor to ext3 will finally leave behind its 'hot' development phase." The article notes that ext4 developer Theodore Ts'o (tytso) is in favor of ultimately moving Linux to a modern, "next-generation" file system. His preferred choice is btrfs, and Heise notes an email Ts'o sent to the Linux Kernel Mailing List a week back positioning ext4 as a bridge to btrfs.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Ext4 Advances As Interim Step To Btrfs

Comments Filter:
  • BTRFS? REALLY? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by erroneus (253617) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:00AM (#25437223) Homepage

    Couldn't they come up with a better name than "BuTteR FaSe?" I know I can't be the only one who read it like that. Call it anything but that.

    • by pizzach (1011925)
      No I did not. Thanks to you, now whenever I am eating or drinking at the computer, everything will taste like land-o-lakes butter faces now. Bleh!
    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:23AM (#25437381)

      Butter Fase probably intended as Butter Face.

      Sounds like "But Her Face" as in: She has a great body, but her face...

    • by hampton (209113) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:47AM (#25437513)

      You're right. BTRFS is really silly. I recommend that the shortened form be ButtFS.

    • Re: (Score:2, Redundant)

      by Dwedit (232252)

      I think it reads more like "Bit Rot" filesystem, perfect for 20 year old EPROM chips.

    • Re:BTRFS? REALLY? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by blahplusplus (757119) * on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:56AM (#25437561)

      "Couldn't they come up with a better name than "BuTteR FaSe?" I know I can't be the only one who read it like that. Call it anything but that."

      I read it as:

      BeTteR FileSystem

      I guess we'll have to part was :P

    • by deniable (76198) on Monday October 20, 2008 @02:19AM (#25437963)

      I read it as BeaterFS and wondered if it was too soon for ReiserFS jokes.

    • buttfsck!! (Score:5, Funny)

      by Zaiff Urgulbunger (591514) on Monday October 20, 2008 @08:22AM (#25439353)
      You think that's bad? The file system check command is buttfsck!
  • BTRFS? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:05AM (#25437261)

    So it incorporates compression by vowel ommission? Brllnt!

  • Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mlts (1038732) * on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:06AM (#25437263)

    Unless ZFS has patent issues, why not just work on having ZFS as Linux's standard FS, after ext3?

    ZFS offers a lot of capabilities, from no need to worry about a LVM layer, to snapshotting, to excellent error detection, even encryption and compression hooks.

    • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

      by PhrostyMcByte (589271) <phrosty@gmail.com> on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:15AM (#25437323) Homepage
      I am not aware of the differences, but from Theodore Ts'o [kerneltrap.org]:

      people who really like reiser4 might want to take a look at btrfs; it has a number of the same design ideas that reiser3/4 had --- except (a) the filesystem format has support for some advanced features that are designed to leapfrog ZFS, (b) the maintainer is not a crazy man and works well with other LKML developers (free hint: if your code needs to be reviewed to get in, and reviewers are scarce; don't insult and abuse the volunteer reviewers as Hans did --- Not a good plan!).

      • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by clarkkent09 (1104833) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:52AM (#25437527)
        (b) the maintainer is not a crazy man and works well with other LKML developers

        Also important, he might be more focused due to not being in prison for first degree murder
      • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by GrievousMistake (880829) on Monday October 20, 2008 @01:49AM (#25437829)

        Huh. One of the interesting things things about Reiser4 from an end-user perspective was Hans Reisers plans for file metadata. From what I can find about btrfs, it currently doesn't even support normal extended attributes. There was also talk about making it easy for developers to extend the filesystem with plugins that could add e.g. compression schemes.
        I can't really recognize anything from Hans Reiser's ramblings in the btrfs documentation that isn't standard file system improvements already seen in e.g. ZFS. does anyone have any specific examples of the ZFS-leapfrogging features referred to?

        • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 20, 2008 @02:13AM (#25437929)

          Huh. One of the interesting things things about Reiser4 from an end-user perspective was Hans Reisers plans for file metadata.

          No, the most interesting feature of ReiserFS is this one [wikipedia.org] (look to the far right).

          --
          ReiserFS: It puts the "stab" in "/etc/fstab".

        • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

          by diegocgteleline.es (653730) on Monday October 20, 2008 @08:00AM (#25439239)

          One of the differences I can find between btrfs and ZFS is that ZFS explicitely avoided [opensolaris.org] a fsck utility, and btrfs is explicitely designed with features designed to make fsck even more powerful than it's on usual filesystems like ext3. In btrfs, data structures have "back references", and the fsck can be used while the filesystem is mounted.

          IMO, this is a a btrfs advantage. ZFS has checksums and will find errors, but only will be able to self-heal the errors in a redundant configuration. On a single disk, ZFS will find the error thanks to checksums but will not be able to recover your data. Since ZFS was mainly designed for systems that will use redundant configurations, it may have sense there, but desktops are not never going to do such things. IMO the ZFS people were a bit elitist here - "let's going to build a filesystem so good that we won't need a fsck". But in the real world you _are_ going to need a fsck util. Only in excepcional and very rare cases, but you're going to need it.

          Of course that doesn't makes ZFS a bad filesystem, but it's an advantage for btrfs and linux.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by segedunum (883035)

            ZFS has checksums and will find errors, but only will be able to self-heal the errors in a redundant configuration. On a single disk, ZFS will find the error thanks to checksums but will not be able to recover your data. Since ZFS was mainly designed for systems that will use redundant configurations, it may have sense there, but desktops are not never going to do such things.

            I find this checksumming and self-healing interesting, but the real question is what do you actually do to really solve it? With ZFS

    • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:18AM (#25437347)

      The ZFS developers specifically wanted the open sourced code to be under a GPL incompatible license, hence it has been released under CDDL (there was a interview with the Sun open source rep, can someone provide info/links about this). So ZFS cannot be part of the kernel, but there is a FUSE port of ZFS and according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZFS#Linux Sun is investigating a Linux port, so there may be something good coming

      • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

        by mritunjai (518932) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:44AM (#25437493) Homepage

        The ZFS developers specifically wanted the open sourced code to be under a GPL incompatible license, hence it has been released under CDDL (there was a interview with the Sun open source rep, can someone provide info/links about this). So ZFS cannot be part of the kernel, but there is a FUSE port of ZFS and according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZFS#Linux [wikipedia.org] Sun is investigating a Linux port, so there may be something good coming

        Rather, GPL is incompatible with anything else that can't be re-licensed as GPL, and that includes GPL v2 and v3, which can't even be mixed among themselves. May first we clear that mess, right ?

        ZFS is present in both Mac OSX and FreeBSD, thank you! They have no license issues whatsoever.

        • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

          by mml (38960) on Monday October 20, 2008 @02:31AM (#25438005)

          > Rather, GPL is incompatible with anything else that can't be re-licensed as GPL, and
          > that includes GPL v2 and v3, which can't even be mixed among themselves.

          Saying that GPLv2 and GPLv3 "can't even be mixed among themselves" is wrong and
          misleading.

          Section 14 of GPLv2 specifically deals with the problem of later versions of the
          licence and sets out the options. A copyright holder can choose to allow work to be used
          with later versions, such as GPLv3, or can choose not to. There are also more
          complex options. The licence itself doesn't force the choice one way or the other.

          Matt

          • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:4, Insightful)

            by tkinnun0 (756022) on Monday October 20, 2008 @04:14AM (#25438401)
            It's not wrong or misleading. If you have GPLv3 and GPLv2 code, you can mix them if the GPLv2 code's copyright holder gives you the permission. Likewise, if you have BSD and GPLv2 code and wish to retain the BSD licence. The mechanisms may be different but the end result is the same: GPLv2 in itself doesn't give you the permission, you need permission from the copyright holder.
        • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

          by Kjella (173770) on Monday October 20, 2008 @04:10AM (#25438387) Homepage

          Rather, GPL is incompatible with anything else that can't be re-licensed as GPL, and that includes GPL v2 and v3, which can't even be mixed among themselves. May first we clear that mess, right?

          With a copyleft license, you intend to secure certain rights to the end user to the work as a whole. It is at the very essence of what the GPL tries to do compared to non-copyleft open source licenses or the LGPL that only covers the parts consisting of LGPL code, not any sort of "flaw" or "mess". Licenses work so that you must simultaniously fulfill all of them, so the GPL denies using GPL code with code that denies end users the four freedoms the FSF profess. That is the intention by design, but then there is some collateral damage as well-intended licenses are rendered GPL-incompatible due to details since the GPL (or any copyleft license) couldn't allow open-ended arbitrary restrictions without losing all meaning. The GPLv2 was particularly flawed in this area since it was made fairly long ago with this not much in mind, and in the GPLv3 they did a lot of work to improve compatibility leading to section 7 that among other things say:

          Notwithstanding any other provision of this License, for material you add to a covered work, you may (if authorized by the copyright holders of that material) supplement the terms of this License with terms:
          a) Disclaiming warranty or limiting liability differently from the terms of sections 15 and 16 of this License; or
          b) Requiring preservation of specified reasonable legal notices or author attributions in that material or in the Appropriate Legal Notices displayed by works containing it; or
          c) Prohibiting misrepresentation of the origin of that material, or requiring that modified versions of such material be marked in reasonable ways as different from the original version; or
          d) Limiting the use for publicity purposes of names of licensors or authors of the material; or
          e) Declining to grant rights under trademark law for use of some trade names, trademarks, or service marks; or
          f) Requiring indemnification of licensors and authors of that material by anyone who conveys the material (or modified versions of it) with contractual assumptions of liability to the recipient, for any liability that these contractual assumptions directly impose on those licensors and authors.

          That vastly improves compatibility with the licenses the GPL wants to be compatible with so collateral damage is reduced to a minimum. It's still very easy to write a license, even a free software license, that isn't GPL compatible though. If you look at the reason the CDDL and GPL are incompatible it's that the CDDLs copyleft conditions and the GPLs copyleft conditions clash because they both try to do the same thing. It's almost impossible to write two copyleft licenses where one (or both) doesn't see the other as adding "additional restrictions" on the end user. Even the GPL can't escape that as it tries to improve the GPL unless you have the "and later" clause. Then again, there's no reason such a license should have to be revised often - it took 16 years before releasing version three and it'll probably be longer until next time it's needed.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by setagllib (753300)

        A FUSE ZFS guarantees it will never be the "default" filesystem anyway. BTRFS has a good shot at being your / in a couple of years.

    • IIRC, it is that ZFS was released with a license that is not compatible with GPL v2 and thus cannot be part of the Linux Kernel. Will be interesting to see how btfs stacks up with ZFS.
    • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Mad Merlin (837387) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:22AM (#25437375) Homepage

      ZFS offers a lot of capabilities, from no need to worry about a LVM layer, to snapshotting, to excellent error detection, even encryption and compression hooks.

      ...and that's it's biggest problem. ZFS duplicates a lot of functionality that belongs outside of a filesystem. All of the above can already be done using any Linux filesystem, so why keep around a second copy of all that code that implements those features for just a single filesystem?

      ReiserFS was (is) in a similar situation, where it also duplicates a lot of functionality that doesn't belong in the filesystem. Not only does this make it harder to maintain, but it makes a lot of features filesystem specific that shouldn't be.

      • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

        by Wonko (15033) <thehead@patshead.com> on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:38AM (#25437473) Homepage Journal

        ZFS duplicates a lot of functionality that belongs outside of a filesystem. All of the above can already be done using any Linux filesystem, so why keep around a second copy of all that code that implements those features for just a single filesystem?

        It wouldn't be possible to duplicate RAID-Z with LVM. Other features of ZFS are very handy, but RAID-Z is by far my favorite. Same storage density as RAID 5 but without the horrible write performance. RAID-Z uses copy-on-write to avoid RAID 5's required read for every non-cached write.

        Being able to create filesystems just as easily as creating directories is quite handy as well, though. IIRC, the filesystem sizes in ZFS are controlled by a quota style system. That is much simpler than shrinking an LV (if your filesystem supports shrinking), then adding a new LV, and then creating a filesystem. I don't know about you, but I am always a bit nervous when I have to resize an LV.

        • You're both right. (Score:5, Interesting)

          by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Monday October 20, 2008 @01:30AM (#25437741) Journal

          ZFS duplicates a lot of functionality that belongs outside of a filesystem.

          Very true.

          It wouldn't be possible to duplicate RAID-Z with LVM.

          Also true.

          And the features which could be duplicated, couldn't be done nearly as well without a little more knowledge of the filesystem.

          The real problem here is that we're finding out that generic block devices aren't enough to do everything we want to do outside the filesystem itself. Or, if they are, it's incredibly clumsy. Trivial example: If I want a copy-on-write snapshot, I have to set aside (ahead of time) some fixed amount of space that it can expand into. If I guess high, I waste space. If I guess low, I have to either expand it (somehow, if that's even possible) or lose my snapshot.

          A filesystem which natively implemented COW could also trivially implement snapshots which take up exactly as much space as there are differences between the increments. But because of the way the Linux VFS is structured, this kind of functionality would have to be in a single filesystem, and would be duplicated across all filesystems. Best case, it'd be like ext3's JBD, as a kind of shared library.

          A humble proposal: We need another layer, between the block layer and the filesystem layer -- call it an extent layer -- which is simply concerned with allocating some amount of space, and (perhaps) assigning it a unique ID. Filesystems could sit above this layer and implement whatever crazy optimizations or semantics they want -- linear vs btree vs whatever for directories, POSIX vs SQL, whatever.

          The extent layer itself would only be concerned with allocating extents of some requested size, and actually storing the data. But this would be enough information to effectively handle mirroring, striping, snapshotting, copy-on-write, etc.

          It wouldn't be universal -- I've said nothing about the on-disk format, and, indeed, some filesystems exist on Linux solely for that purpose -- vfat, ntfs, udf, etc. Those filesystems could be done pretty much exactly the way they're done now. After all, the existence of a block layer in no way implies that every filesystem must be tied to a block device (see proc, sys, fuse, etc.)

          But I think it would work very well for filesystems which did choose to implement it. I think it would provide the best of ZFS and LVM.

          I haven't actually been seriously following filesystem development for years, so maybe this is already done. Or maybe it's a bad idea. If not, hopefully some kernel developers are reading this.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by Wonko (15033)

            Trivial example: If I want a copy-on-write snapshot, I have to set aside (ahead of time) some fixed amount of space that it can expand into. If I guess high, I waste space. If I guess low, I have to either expand it (somehow, if that's even possible) or lose my snapshot.

            That still only covers one deficiency of LVM snapshots. LVM snapshots are read only and intended to be temporary. I'm also pretty sure you can't snapshot a snapshot, which wouldn't be at all helpful with a read only snapshot anyway.

            A humbl

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Znork (31774)

          RAID-Z uses copy-on-write to avoid RAID 5's required read for every non-cached write.

          Of course, the very same copy-on-write will also result in massive file fragmentation, carefully smearing your dbf files over the entire platters, making your SAN caches useless. Over time resulting in horrible read performance.

          ZFS is certainly a huge improvement for anyone used to ufs and disksuite, but I have to say that using it in the real world it's not all it's cracked up to be. A more layered approach would have made

          • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:4, Interesting)

            by Wonko (15033) <thehead@patshead.com> on Monday October 20, 2008 @06:32AM (#25438923) Homepage Journal

            Of course, the very same copy-on-write will also result in massive file fragmentation, carefully smearing your dbf files over the entire platters, making your SAN caches useless. Over time resulting in horrible read performance.

            If you want good database performance you probably want as little file system overhead as possible between your database and the disk. I wouldn't have expected ZFS to be the most efficient place to store a database.

            I would have to imagine your SAN is just doing uninformed readaheads. That would be a very good way to fill up a cache with useless data if you are reading from a fragmented file system. :)

            This issue with copy-on-write will be entirely sidestepped in a few years by flash storage's lightning fast seek times and smarter caching. IIRC, isn't the reason that zfs-fuse uses so damn much ram because ZFS has its own caching logic built in? If the file system knows where all the blocks in a file are it can do readaheads on its own.

            ZFS is certainly a huge improvement for anyone used to ufs and disksuite, but I have to say that using it in the real world it's not all it's cracked up to be.

            I don't have enough of my own real world experience with ZFS to argue with your experience. In fact, what I know of how ZFS works makes me believe that it can cause exactly the problems of which you speak.

            However, I don't think that means that there aren't a ton of workloads that wouldn't be impacted by these problems. I also believe that a large percentage of those workloads could benefit greatly from some of the features ZFS brings to the table.

            RAID-Z is nice when you need write performance but can't afford the drives for RAID 10. I can think of plenty of times when it would have been nice to have a writable snapshot to chroot into.

            Hell, I would even love to have ZFS on my laptop for snapshotting and cloning. It also seems like ZFS send/recv would make for much more efficient backups of my laptop than rsync buys me.

            Mixing together the features of various layers is, imo, no matter how tempting, simply the wrong approach. Proceed further along that road and you get to record based filesystems or even more special-purpose variants. I mean, there are even more optimizations that you can do if you know the _contents_ of the files.

            I think we are getting some pretty neat new features out of our file systems by blurring the lines between the layers. I wouldn't be surprised if we stumble upon a few more neat ideas before we're through.

            There is still quite a bit of improvement to make even before we have to make the file system aware of what is inside our files. :)

      • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by BrentH (1154987) on Monday October 20, 2008 @03:47AM (#25438295)

        The things you think belong outside of a filesystem only 'nelong' there because that's what years of narrowminded developing have tought you. Look at it this way: /everything/ related to filestorage is managed by ZFS. What could be more convenient than that? Because of this, ZFS can do things much faster and much more reliable than any combo of LVM with a filesystem. Why chain together tools yourself, and manually think about things you really shouldn't be thinking about, when you can have a good filesystem take care of it for you.

        ZFS is easier to maintain, from a users perpective (and that's the job of development, to make usage easier, not ever the other way round).

        • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:4, Insightful)

          by gbjbaanb (229885) on Monday October 20, 2008 @04:36AM (#25438477)

          Why chain together tools yourself, and manually think about things you really shouldn't be thinking about, when you can have a good filesystem take care of it for you.

          Because that's the Unix way - build small components (applications) and chain them together to create something out of the parts. I mean, why have ls and grep when you can have lsgrepsortfind? Really, the point is to have small, easily maintained apps that do 1 thing well than 1 app that does everything possibly well, but more usually poorly as its difficult to maintain and ensure it works properly. Not to mention the bloat when it replicates functionality already provided.

          This may not be the best model for a critical component like a filesystem, but on the other hand, reliability of a filesystem is paramount, so keeping it as small as possible is probably a good idea.

    • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:5, Informative)

      by volsung (378) <stan@mtrr.org> on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:26AM (#25437401)

      I don't know about the patents, but the current major obstacle is the license. ZFS, as part of the OpenSolaris kernel, is available under the CDDL. The CDDL is incompatible with the GPL, ruling out ZFS inclusion directly in the Linux kernel. Sun has hinted that they could dual license the Solaris kernel under CDDL and GPL, but that hasn't happened yet. Small parts of the ZFS filesystem code have been GPLed so they could be added to grub to support booting ZFS root filesystems.

      There is a userspace port of the ZFS code and utilities which avoids the license problem by using FUSE to separate the filesystem code into a separate process: ZFS-FUSE [blogspot.com].

      If Sun were to ever dual-license ZFS, the ZFS-FUSE codebase would be a good place to start for porting the code to direct kernel inclusion. (Note: Sun, via their subsidiary, Cluster File Systems, now employes the author of ZFS-FUSE to use his port as an optional backend for the Lustre file system.)

    • Re:Why not ZFS? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by mvdwege (243851) <mvdwege@mail.com> on Monday October 20, 2008 @02:52AM (#25438091) Homepage Journal

      Come back when ZFS has decent filesystem maintenance tools.

      And don't give me that 'ZFS doesn't need a fsck' crap. SGI tried to pull that with XFS, and it didn't work. Filesystem (at least metadata) corruption will happen, and once it does, ZFS doesn't have the tools to fix it.

      Mart

  • What I'd like (Score:5, Interesting)

    by grasshoppa (657393) <skennedy&tpno-co,org> on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:09AM (#25437283) Homepage

    I would like transparent, administrator controlled, versioning. Modified a word document and saved it in place? root can go back and get the old version ( and, alternatively, the user can. root could disable this functionality ).

    The pieces are in place, it's doable, just someone needs to program it.

    • Re:What I'd like (Score:5, Interesting)

      by corsec67 (627446) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:20AM (#25437355) Homepage Journal

      So, you want a Versioning file system [wikipedia.org]? Just make sure you never let that run on /var.

      OSS is like capitalism: If you see a need, then make it and distribute it.

    • Re:What I'd like (Score:5, Interesting)

      by bendodge (998616) <bendodge@@@bsgprogrammers...com> on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:33AM (#25437441) Homepage Journal

      That leads to space-bloat.

      What I'd like are files with expiration dates. When I make up some twiddly chart or download some funny video, I keep it because I'll probably want it tomorrow or next week, but then I tend to forget to delete it later. It would be really cool if creating a user data file prompted you with a simple dialog specifying how long you want it. Common options like 1 Week, 1 Month, 6 Months, 2 Years, Forever would do most of the time, and an option to choose a custom date would cover the rest. When a file expired, it would be placed in some kind of psudo-Trash Bin that could be reviewed and emptied when you want more space.

      I'd also love something tag-based instead of hierarchy-based. For example, I store photos by Year > Month > Event, but sometimes I want to make another category for photos of a specific person. This means I either make duplicates or have to dig around to find things. If I could tag them with dates (that should actually be auto-generated from the EXIF), event, place, and people I could then just browse for files with a particular tag.

      Come to think of it, these ideas are both somewhat akin to how a human brain stores stuff.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      wayback [sourceforge.net], copyfs [n0x.org], and ext3cow [ext3cow.com] are all fairly stable versioning filesystems for linux. I'm not sure if they let you stop non-root users from getting old versions, but I don't see why you'd want people to have to ask an admin to get old versions of their files?

    • Something like ZFS immediately comes to mind... but is there some generally accepted definition of what makes a file system "next generation"? TFA doesn't say, and I hate to diminish anyone's efforts here, but the new features in ext4 (according to wikipedia) aren't much to write home about: higher precision time stamps, larger volumes, larger directories, faster fscking. These may be worthy accomplishments but they are incremental improvements, not anything new. Or did I miss something?

    • by Fweeky (41046)

      So, something like HAMMER [kerneltrap.org], then?

      A HAMMER filesystem can be mounted with an as-of date to access a snapshot of the system. Snapshots do not have to be explicitly taken but are instead based on the retention policy you specify for any given HAMMER filesystem. It is also possible to access individual files or directories (and their contents) using an as-of extension on the file name.

      Released and stable in DragonFlyBSD 2.0, and obviously BSD licensed.

    • If you want a versioning file system, go use VMS for a while. They've been doing it since at least the early '90s. Not sure if ADVFS has that feature or not, never got a chance to use Tru64.
  • by arrenlex (994824) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:21AM (#25437361)

    Butter FS? Are you kidding me?

    Here is your first official list of jokes. Please contribute.

    1. You're still running ext4? I can't believe it's not ButterFS!
    2. But will it run on toast?
    3. Will fsck be renamed to butterknife?
    4. If your system overheats will your filesystem melt?
    5. If you use ButterFS too much, will it turn into FAT?
    6. If you leave ButterFS on your volume too long, will your hard drive start to reek?
    7. Will the next version of ButterFS be called GoatButterFS, just like the next version of Leopard is Snow Leopard?
    8. "Tough" notebooks will never have their hard drives formatted with ButterFS, because if you dropped them, they would always land hard drive down.
    9. When you submit your dead ButterFS hard drive to a data recovery centre, will they have an intern lick it to get the data off instead of putting it under a read head?

    These are getting kind of desperate -- your turn now.

    Honestly, what is it with FOSS and crappy names? (looking at you, gimp)

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Honestly, what is it with FOSS and crappy names? (looking at you, gimp)

      All the good ones are trademarked. And it's The Gimp, to you, mister!

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by penguinchris (1020961)

      When your hard drive fails and you hear those awful noises, you can say it's churning butter.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 20, 2008 @01:26AM (#25437721)

      These are getting kind of desperate -- your turn now.

      Yeah, you're spreading yourself a bit thin.

      • I hear some of the features in btrfs have been refined from ext3cow.
      • I touch'd a file on a btrfs disk, and now it's sticky!
      • I hear the standard block size of btrfs is 8 oz.
      • How can I make a business case for btrfs? I'm all for introducing new tech, but my boss only cares about how it will affect our margarins.
      • Will btrfs keep my servers from grinding? I'm a bit worried that if they churn too much, my files will separate!
      • And most importantly, In an emergency, can I use btrfs for a smoother fsck?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by RuBLed (995686)
      ButterCupFS - Just when you thought it had everything built up, it will then turn you down and mess things around.

      you said for yourself that this was getting desperate
  • by russlar (1122455) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:21AM (#25437367)
    Great for playing "Hello Kitty! Adventures"
  • Whoa! (Score:5, Funny)

    by aevans (933829) on Monday October 20, 2008 @12:33AM (#25437439) Homepage
    A Linux article on Slashdot!?
  • I saw that and couldn't help but think, are they trying to make a filesystem based on the B-tree concept?

  • that outta make a good marketing strategy
  • by FlyingGuy (989135) <flyingguyNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday October 20, 2008 @02:11AM (#25437917)

    Then look no farther then NSS [wikipedia.org] ( Novell Storage Services ).

    It is Open Source, you get the full source if you download SLES.

    It has more of the desired features [wikipedia.org] then anything else on the block right now.

    This should be the default file system for Linux. It has years of very heavy duty R&D behind it, it is pretty much completely de-bugged and ready to rock.

    • by moosesocks (264553) on Monday October 20, 2008 @02:52AM (#25438097) Homepage

      Max Volume Size: 8 TiB.

      That's not enough. Given that 1TB storage devices are on the market now, that could become outdated quite quickly. You'd be foolish to adopt that sort of filesystem, unless you were absolutely positive that you'd never upgrade (unlikely).

      Honestly, ZFS seems like it's the holy grail of filesystems. There are a few small issues that might need to be worked out, though it seems as close to "ideal" as you'd ever be able to get.

    • by Kent Recal (714863) on Monday October 20, 2008 @04:14AM (#25438403)

      Well, it looks interesting feature-wise but they seem to be explicitly targeting SuSE - which is a no-go for most people.
      From a glance at the docs (hey, at least they have docs, that's a plus) it also seems like it's tied to specific versions of EVMS and other parts of the kernel, thus if you don't run a "blessed, certified" SuSE kernel with all the nasty patches then you're on your own.

      Just google for "debian|gentoo|redhat|... novell nss filesystem". Apparently nobody even tried to run NSS on another distro, or at least didn't write about it.

      I, for one, would only touch this on a blackbox, vendor-supported appliance but never consider it for a production server of my own (none of which run SuSE).
      If they worked towards integrating it into the mainline kernel, now that would be nice.

  • by ZeekWatson (188017) on Monday October 20, 2008 @02:29AM (#25437999)

    I'd like to know why Ted Tso and others are working on ext4? Even when ext4 is feature complete it will be the #3 filesystem in linux in terms of features and scalability behind xfs and jfs. I'd like to know what Ted Tso and others grudge against xfs and jfs is because they basically wont even acknowledge those filesystems.

    btrfs does have some nice looking features, its basically a gpl rewrite of zfs.

    The weakness with linux is in the LVM or EVMS layer. They both suck in that they are not enterprise ready (ie multi TB filesystems, 100+ MB/s sustained read/write) in that they cause unexplained IO hicups, lockups and kernel panics. LVM/EVMS certainly work fine for Joe Blow's HTPC, or a paltry 100GB database but they fall down when under serious load.

    This is the problem with open source. Certain areas, like filesystem development attract all the developers, and other areas like LVM/EVMS are seen as busting rocks and nobody wants to work on them. The results is we get a plethora of second rate filesystems (ie ext4) and a buggy LVM/EVMS layer that nobody wants to work on.

    • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Monday October 20, 2008 @06:09AM (#25438815)

      The weakness with linux is in the LVM or EVMS layer. They both suck in that they are not enterprise ready (ie multi TB filesystems, 100+ MB/s sustained read/write) in that they cause unexplained IO hicups, lockups and kernel panics. LVM/EVMS certainly work fine for Joe Blow's HTPC, or a paltry 100GB database but they fall down when under serious load.

      LVM has been rock-solid for me with a ~7TB and 2 2TB ext3 filesystems (24 500GB disks) over the course of a year and a half. No problems migrating extents all over the place when I needed to swap disks in and out. Almost identical to HPUX in functionality, but without the sizing constraints.

      But, when I tried xfs for kicks I found out that a 7TB filesystem means you need 7GB of RAM to fsck it - impossible on a 32-bit system, I also had a week where I it all went in the shitter because I ran free-space to zero and started getting OS panics and data corruption.

      I'm definitely considering jfs for the next generation, my main complaint with ext3 has been ridiculously slow deletes and fsck's. Problems I have read don't exist with jfs.

  • What about Tux3 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by obi (118631) on Monday October 20, 2008 @05:41AM (#25438713)
    While btrfs looks quite cool, I'm even more interested to see whether http://tux3.org/ [tux3.org] will go anywhere. Let's hope both will materialise and mature soon.

The bomb will never go off. I speak as an expert in explosives. -- Admiral William Leahy, U.S. Atomic Bomb Project

Working...