ZFS directory with a large number of files

Daniel O'Connor doconnor at gsoft.com.au
Tue Aug 2 09:58:39 UTC 2011

On 02/08/2011, at 19:12, Jeremy Chadwick wrote:
> When I was being taught the ropes of system administration at Oregon
> State, the team of crotchety UNIX admins there made it quite clear that
> there were things you just Did Not Do(tm) to computer systems.  Shoving
> thousands of files into a single directory with no hierarchy was one of
> them.

Sounds like a terminal case of Stockholm syndrome ;)

It might be avoidable by the user being nice to the computer, but come on.. The computer is supposed to do tedious crap that humans don't like.

I am pretty sure UFS does not have this problem. i.e. once you delete/move the files out of the directory its performance would be good again.

If it is a limitation in ZFS it would be nice to know that, perhaps it truly, really is a bug that can be avoided (or it's inherent in the way ZFS handles such things)

Daniel O'Connor software and network engineer
for Genesis Software - http://www.gsoft.com.au
"The nice thing about standards is that there
are so many of them to choose from."
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