Re: Temporary file access API

From: Antonin Houska <ah(at)cybertec(dot)at>
To: pgsql-hackers(at)lists(dot)postgresql(dot)org
Cc: Peter Eisentraut <peter(dot)eisentraut(at)enterprisedb(dot)com>, Robert Haas <robertmhaas(at)gmail(dot)com>, Stephen Frost <sfrost(at)snowman(dot)net>
Subject: Re: Temporary file access API
Date: 2022-07-29 15:37:33
Message-ID: 56024.1659109053@antos.home
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Antonin Houska <ah(at)cybertec(dot)at> wrote:

> Peter Eisentraut <peter(dot)eisentraut(at)enterprisedb(dot)com> wrote:
> > On 04.07.22 18:35, Antonin Houska wrote:
> > >> Attached is a new version of the patch, to evaluate what the API use in the
> > >> backend could look like. I haven't touched places where the file is accessed
> > >> in a non-trivial way, e.g. lseek() / fseek() or pg_pwrite() / pg_pread() is
> > >> called.
> > > Rebased patch set is attached here, which applies to the current master.
> > > (A few more opportunities for the new API implemented here.)
> >
> > I don't understand what this patch set is supposed to do. AFAICT, the thread
> > originally forked off from a TDE discussion and, considering the thread
> > subject, was possibly once an attempt to refactor temporary file access to
> > make integrating encryption easier? The discussion then talked about things
> > like saving on system calls and excising all OS-level file access API use,
> > which I found confusing, and the thread then just became a general TDE-related
> > mini-discussion.
> Yes, it's an attempt to make the encryption less invasive, but there are a few
> other objectives, at least: 1) to make the read / write operations "less
> low-level" (there are common things like error handling which are often just
> copy & pasted from other places), 2) to have buffered I/O with configurable
> buffer size (the current patch version still has fixed buffer size though)
> It's true that the discussion ends up to be encryption-specific, however the
> scope of the patch is broader. The first meassage of the thread references a
> related discussion
> which is more important for this patch than the suggestions about encryption.
> > The patches at hand extend some internal file access APIs and then sprinkle
> > them around various places in the backend code, but there is no explanation
> > why or how this is better. I don't see any real structural savings one might
> > expect from a refactoring patch. No information has been presented how this
> > might help encryption.
> At this stage I expected feedback from the developers who have already
> contributed to the discussion, because I'm not sure myself if this version
> fits their ideas - that's why I didn't elaborate the documentation yet. I'll
> try to summarize my understanding in the next version, but I'd appreciate if I
> got some feedback for the current version first.
> > I also suspect that changing around the use of various file access APIs needs
> > to be carefully evaluated in each individual case. Various code has subtle
> > expectations about atomic write behavior, syncing, flushing, error recovery,
> > etc. I don't know if this has been considered here.
> I considered that, but could have messed up at some places. Right now I'm
> aware of one problem: pgstat.c does not expect the file access API to raise
> ERROR - this needs to be fixed.

Attached is a new version. It allows the user to set "elevel" (i.e. ERROR is
not necessarily thrown on I/O failure, if the user prefers to check the number
of bytes read/written) and to specify the buffer size. Also, 0015 adds a
function to copy data from one file descriptor to another.

Antonin Houska

Attachment Content-Type Size
temp_file_api_v4.tgz application/gzip 33.2 KB

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