writing large files quickly

Jens Theisen jth01 at arcor.de
Sat Jan 28 05:44:00 EST 2006

Ivan wrote:

> Steven D'Aprano wrote:

>> Isn't this a file system specific solution though? Won't your file system
>> need to have support for "sparse files", or else it won't work?

> Yes, but AFAIK the only "modern" (meaning: in wide use today) file
> system that doesn't have this support is FAT/FAT32.

I don't think ext2fs does this either. At least the du and df commands  
tell something different.

Actually I'm not sure what this optimisation should give you anyway. The  
only circumstance under which files with only zeroes are meaningful is  
testing, and that's exactly when you don't want that optimisation.

On compressing filesystems such as ntfs you will get this behaviour as a  
special case of compression and compression makes more sense.


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