[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: SEUL: Partitioning

How big of a performance hit do you take going through a loopback device?
I haven't looked at the code, but I assume every io syscall requires two
trips through the VFS layer: one for the initial call and one to perform
the operation on the underlying file system.

While others have made pretty convincing arguments for using loopback, my
gut says that's not the way to go.  The performance issues raised above,
the possibility of users deleting or corrupting their LINUX.DRV file, and
figuring out how to 'right size' the initial partition are the biggest
practical concerns, but I think my real worry is philosophical.

Trial mode, while a nice idea on the surface, makes the assumption that
'ordinary' users spend lots of time trying things on their computers.  I
think it is hard for us a Linux users to imagine not wanting to tinker
with one's computer to get the best possible performance out of it.  If
you make installation a two stage process (trial mode and full install),
the set of people who perform the 'safe' trial mode install may be larger
than if you had forced them do deal with repartitioning initially, but I
think the subset of that group that goes on to the second stage will be a
good bit smallers since most will have gotten fed up with the install by
then.  Put more simply, I think it is better to get the complexity of the
install out of the way in one fell swoop rather than trying to dilute it
by spreading it over multiple stages.

I think we should remember we are competing with NT Workstation, not
Windows 95.  Our pontential users are those that are savvy enough to know
that they can get more from their machines than Win95 can provide, but who
don't know exactly how to get at it.  Based on general good press, these
people may go into their local software retailer and buy a copy of NT
Workstation (maybe OS/2 Warp) to replace the copy of Windows 95 they came
preloaded on their machine.  Our job is to make SEUL a viable alternative
for these people who have already made up their mind that Windows 95
doesn't give them everything they want.

I'm kind of rambling.  I'll try to sum up:

Our ultimate goal should be for major computer manufactures to preload
SEUL on their commodity systems.  To accomplish that goal, we must create
a significant body of users who want SEUL and nothing else.  I have argued
previously that the best place to generate such a body is among
corporate/organizational users.  Barring that, we should concentrate on
users really savvy enough to appreciate what they are getting with SEUL.


Simple End User Linux Mailing list
To be removed from this mailing list send a message to majordomo@txcc.net
with the line
unsubscribe seul-project
in the body of the letter.