On May 2, 2022, at 15:07 , Jan Engelhardt <jeng...@inai.de> wrote:
> On Monday 2022-05-02 14:20, Thomas Jahns wrote:
>>>>> Is there a way to speed 'automake' up?
>>>> [...let] ephemeral builds [..] use /dev/shm [...]
>>> There ought to be little difference [...] automake, that's nowhere near as
>>> IO-heavy as untarring kernel source archives. It's much more a CPU-bound
>>> task.
>> I found tmpfs to be faster when there were multiple smallish (less than an fs
>> block) writes to the same file, particularly by different programs. This may
>> be more important in the context of all autotools taken together than 
>> automake
>> alone. Also not all file systems take full advantage of all methods to 
>> prevent
>> the system from hitting disk like XFS does, i.e. results depend on what you
>> compare to.
> But you're just acknowledging that the slowness comes from the _fs_, are you 
> not?

Yes, sure, I was expclity stating in my initial reply that using tmpfs might 
not be what the OP asked for but instead what might actually solve their 
problem of slow builds. I also like having programs make efficient use of 
system resources, but sometimes throwing machine resources at a problem can be 
the most appropriate course of action.

> Indeed, if a source code package consists of 10000 files, then configure
> produces another 10k files for the stuff in the ".deps" directories.
> There is not much autotooling can do here, as I believe pregenerating
> those 10k files all with "# dummy" content is to support the least common
> demoniator of /usr/bin/make.
> I wonder, rather than emitting those 8 bytes to .Po/.Plo/.Tpo/etc. files, 
> could
> we emit 0 bytes instead? Then filesystems would have to write only the inode
> and forego extent allocation for the data portion (and save some disk space
> too, as each 8-byte file in practice reserves something like 4K on
> non-packing/non-compressing filesystems).

That might be something to investigate: could autoconf detect GNU parallel and 
call config.status in some way that automatically creates multiple instances? 
Running config.status is usually not the longest part of an autoconf run but 
one that might be reasonably simple to parallelize.


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