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Re: Sparse file criteria malfunction - binutils produces sparse .exe & .dll files

Corinna Vinschen wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 05, 2003 at 05:25:18PM +0100, Max Bowsher wrote:
>> I threw together a horrible C program to ask Windows whether a file was
>> sparse. .exe and .dll files made with a 1.5.0 Cygwin are. I haven't
>> the test program, because it is too messy.
>> [...]
>> I give proof that dll/exe files are being created sparse above.
> Uhm...

I like to think that I'm sufficiently trustworthy not to lie about a clear
yes/no fact.
But, fine, I've attached my messy code.

>> Do you mean proof that sparseness of .exe files is harmful?
>> Data has already been posted by me and others showing that sparse files
>> consume excess disc space.
> It does if it's used for files smaller than 128K.  That's probably
> an argument to sparsify a file only if the lseek hole is >= 128K
> but it's not an argument against sparse files at all.  I'm perfectly
> happy with changing this from 64K to 128K, ok?

OK, I will up the limit and retry binutils.

>> a sparse file - I have no test data, but since sparseness gains me
>> and might lose me something, I dont like it._
> That's a good argument. I'm speechless.

Personally I think "Don't risk anything if there is no potential gain" is
reasonably persuasive.

>> So, the point is, for the majority of users, sparseness gains nothing,
>> can have undesirable effects.
>> Therefore, I really think it should be off by default.
> We're now on the path of opinion.  My opinion is to drop 9x/Me
> support entirely from Cygwin since it just requires ugly hacks
> in the code.  But that's not actually an argument to do it in
> reality.

Well, keeping 9x/Me support gains 9x/Me users a lot.
What does sparseness-on-by-default gain users? If anything, I don't see it.


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