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Re: Inlining comparators as a performance optimisation

From: Robert Haas <robertmhaas(at)gmail(dot)com>
To: Tom Lane <tgl(at)sss(dot)pgh(dot)pa(dot)us>
Cc: Peter Geoghegan <peter(at)2ndquadrant(dot)com>, PG Hackers <pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org>
Subject: Re: Inlining comparators as a performance optimisation
Date: 2011-12-02 04:00:36
Message-ID: CA+TgmoYUf889c5DupPgkoReQh4Fca608pQntOePWosim5bO=uQ@mail.gmail.com (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-hackers
On Thu, Dec 1, 2011 at 10:48 PM, Tom Lane <tgl(at)sss(dot)pgh(dot)pa(dot)us> wrote:
> But you still need a lot of mechanism to do that mapping, including an
> initialization function that has noplace to be executed (unless every
> .so that defines a btree opclass has to be listed in preload_libraries),
> so it doesn't seem like the "thinnest possible shim" to me.

PG_init?

>>> One thing I'm not too certain about is whether to define the APIs just
>>> as above, or to support a passthrough argument of some sort (and if so,
>>> what does it reference)?  Possibly any datatype that we'd actually care
>>> about this for is going to be simple enough to not need any state data.
>>> Or possibly not.  And what about collations?
>
>> Maybe there should be a comparator_setup function that gets the
>> collation OID and returns void *, and then that void * value gets
>> passed as a third argument to each call to the comparator function.
>
> Maybe.  Or perhaps we could merge that work into the
> function-pointer-setup function --- that is, give it the collation and
> some extra workspace to fool with.  We would always know the
> collation at the time we're doing that setup.

Ah!  That seems quite nice.

> At this point the struct filled in by the setup function is starting
> to feel a lot like FmgrInfo, and history teaches us a lot about what
> needs to be in there.  So maybe
>
> typedef struct SortSupportInfoData *SortSupportInfo;
>
> typedef struct SortSupportInfoData
> {
>        MemoryContext   info_cxt;       /* where to allocate subsidiary data */
>        void            *extra;         /* any data needed by functions */
>        Oid             collation;      /* provided by caller */
>
>        void    (*inline_qsort) (Datum *elements, int nelements,
>                                 SortSupportInfo info);
>        int     (*comparator) (Datum a, Datum b,
>                               SortSupportInfo info);
>        /* possibly other function pointers in future */
> } SortSupportInfoData;
>
> I am thinking that the btree code, at least, would want to just
> unconditionally do
>
>        colsortinfo->comparator(datum1, datum2, colsortinfo)
>
> so for an opclass that fails to supply the low-overhead comparator,
> it would insert into the "comparator" pointer a shim function that
> calls the opclass' old-style FCI-using comparator.  (Anybody who
> complains about the added overhead would be told to get busy and
> supply a low-overhead comparator for their datatype...)  But to do
> that, we have to have enough infrastructure here to cover all cases,
> so omitting collation or not having a place to stash an FmgrInfo
> won't do.

I'm slightly worried about whether that'll be adding too much overhead
to the case where there is no non-FCI comparator.  But it may be no
worse than what we're doing now.

-- 
Robert Haas
EnterpriseDB: http://www.enterprisedb.com
The Enterprise PostgreSQL Company

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