Linux: Adaptive Readahead

Posted by grouch on May 28, 2006 5:47 AM EDT
KernelTrap; By Jeremy
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"Readahead is a technique employed by the kernel in an attempt to improve file reading performance. If the kernel has reason to believe that a particular file is being read sequentially, it will attempt to read blocks from the file into memory before the application requests them. When readahead works, it speeds up the system's throughput, since the reading application does not have to wait for its requests. When readahead fails, instead, it generates useless I/O and occupies memory pages which are needed for some other purpose."

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