The Haiku/BeOS Tip Server
Tips and tricks for Haiku/BeOS users

Disable filesystem indices

Contributed by: Anonymous
This tip is valid for: Both BeOS and Haiku

This tip is for advanced users only. Proceed at your own risk.

As you know, BeOS offers lightning-fast filesystem queries on arbitrary data sets by indexing attributes attached to your files. This is a huge convenience win for users, but can slow down some operations when dealing with zillions of small files, especially if those files have lots of attributes.

If you want to create an ultra-fast filesystem and are prepared to never be able to execute queries on a particular volume, you can create a volume without indices by using the mkbfs command with the -noindex flag. Remember that using this command will destroy all data on the volume in question.

Determine the device name where you want the filesystem to live (the df command is the easiest way to map volume names to device names), then type something like:

mkbfs -noindex 1024 /dev/disk/ide/ata/0/slave/0/0_0 speedy

This would create an index-free BFS volume with a block size of 1024 called speedy. If you later want to add indices to the volume, you’ll have to create it over from scratch. Some developers have noted great speed increases in compile time with very large projects.

Posted in Miscellaneous


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