Is it more CPU-efficient to read/write config file or read/write sqlite database?

Chris Angelico rosuav at
Thu Dec 19 09:18:44 CET 2013

On Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 6:56 PM, Cameron Simpson <cs at> wrote:
> On 18Dec2013 21:50, Chris Angelico <rosuav at> wrote:
>> It's fundamentally about crash recovery, [...]
>> Databases protect against that. If you want that protection, use a
>> database. If you don't, use a file. There's nothing wrong with either
>> option.
> Look, broadly I agree. But this thread was about sharing access to
> configs etc between processes. And it segued into suggesting sqlite.
> Which is good and bad.
> My point here is that here we were discussing cooperative access
> to some shared state. And a "database" is tossed into the mix, with
> its -- for this purpose --- overkill data integrity provisions.
> So I feel obliged to point out the performance costs associated
> with using a sledgehammer to bang in a tack.

Fair enough. So the correct decision in this instance may well be: Use
a file, because you don't want a database.

On the flip side, maybe the data integrity guarantees *are* what you
want. Depends how often you're updating those files.


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