from the luke-alan-cox-is-your-guru dept.
Runnin'Scared writes "Linux guru Alan Cox has a writeup on KernelTrap in which he talks about all the possible ways for data to get corrupted when being written to or read from a hard disk drive. This includes much of the information applicable to all operating systems. He prefaces his comments noting that the details are entirely device specific, then dives right into a fascinating and somewhat disturbing path tracing data from the drive, through the cable, into the bus, main memory and CPU cache. He also discusses the transfer of data via TCP and cautions, 'unfortunately lots of high performance people use checksum offload which removes much of the end to end protection and leads to problems with iffy cards and the like. This is well studied and known to be very problematic but in the market speed sells not correctness.'"
Programmers used to batch environments may find it hard to live without
giant listings; we would find it hard to use them.
-- D.M. Ritchie