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Findutils 4.2.13 is released on alpha.gnu.org

From: James Youngman
Subject: Findutils 4.2.13 is released on alpha.gnu.org
Date: Sun, 23 Jan 2005 11:57:50 +0000
User-agent: Mutt/1.3.28i

I'm happy to announce the availability of findutils version 4.2.13 at

This release contains only one change; a significant performance
enhancement.  This avoids using stat() or lstat() to determine the
types of files.  Instead the "d_type" member of "stuct dirent" is used
to provide the same information.  This information is available on
Linux, the various flavours of BSD, and MacOS X.  Other systems may
exist which provide this information.

This optimisation eliminates somewhere between 30% and 99% of the
calls to lstat() or stat().  Limited testing shows a 2x speedup on NFS
filesystems.  Use of RAM to cache filesystem metadata often makes the
performance benefit smaller for local filesystems.

The performance enhancement is new code which has been tested on
GNU/Linux but not on other systems (notably, it has not been tested on
*BSD).  For this reason, the enhancement is disabled by default.

To enable this enhancement, please give the option
"--enable-d_type-optimisation" to "configure".

I'd like to thank Jamie Lokier for implementing the changes to the
Linux kernel that made this optimisation possible, and Jakub Jelinek
too (Jakub produced an earlier patch which does the same thing, though
this findutils change doesn't actually make use of that patch).

James Youngman

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