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[RFC PATCH] Sector 2 of non-embedded core.img: write early or patch late

From: Pavel Roskin
Subject: [RFC PATCH] Sector 2 of non-embedded core.img: write early or patch later?
Date: Fri, 27 Jun 2008 17:24:59 -0400


We have a serious problem with installing onto partitions (e.g.
grub-install /dev/sda1) and drives with geometry that doesn't leave
enough space for core.img to be embedded before the first partition.
While it's not a desirable configuration, it should work, but it

Either we should write sector 2 before the core.img is checked for
readability or we should delay patching sector 2 in memory until the
verification is done.  Otherwise, the verification will fail.

Delayed patching changes nothing in terms of I/O but needs a longer
patch and won't scale well if we want to put more information into
sector 2, as we'll need to cache more data.

Writing sector 2 early is less intrusive in terms of code, but may be
slower e.g. on floppies.  It's probably more reliable because we verify
that the modified sector 2 made it to the filesystem.

I tend to prefer the later ("write early") approach, but I'd like to see
some feedback before I commit it.

Both proposed patches are attached.

Pavel Roskin

Attachment: 01-patch-later.patch
Description: Text Data

Attachment: 01-write-early.patch
Description: Text Data

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