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Re: [bug #60774] make hangs on fcntl lock when using -O and stdout is /d

From: Paul Smith
Subject: Re: [bug #60774] make hangs on fcntl lock when using -O and stdout is /dev/null
Date: Sun, 25 Jul 2021 16:31:09 -0400
User-agent: Evolution 3.36.5-0ubuntu1

On Sun, 2021-07-25 at 16:04 -0400, Dmitry Goncharov wrote:
> > It's clear that /dev/null is a special case, however, because the
> > order in which data is written to it cannot be detected so what's
> > the point in preserving any order?
> Maybe Mike can tell us.

Based on the bug report I don't think Mike knows.  It didn't appear to
me that he had purposefully locked /dev/null, or was even aware that it
was locked.  Is there something else on his system that's doing it?  Is
it a change to the kernel that cause locks here to hang?  We don't

> > What I'm saying is that IF make can detect that its stdout is going
> > to /dev/null then it shouldn't lock at all, because it's not
> > necessary to do so in order to meet the goals of the -O option, and
> > doing so introduces unnecessary latency in the build.
> Even if we come up with a portable mechanism to detect /dev/null,
> what about other files? What about /dev/stdout or /dev/pts/5? i don't
> think, it is possible or even reasonable to attempt to special case
> all these files.

What I'm trying to say is that even if we do special-case /dev/null we
definitely shouldn't special case other files, because /dev/null is
truly a unique situation which is fundamentally different from
/dev/pts/5 etc., and is deserving of special handling.

However, it's moot because I don't think we can detect it.

> > The  question is what to do about supporting -O on these systems.
> A private temp file will work.

Yes.  It's good to have that capability.

Another option would be to use a POSIX named semaphore.  The advantage
of this is that you don't have to worry about temporary file creation,
permissions, and cleaning up.

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