But if you write a large number of random files, when htree has three levels index. htree will suffer on the effect that it dirty random block very quickly, most block get dirty only contain one or two new entries. Ext3 will choke on it due to the limited journal size.
While non-index directory, new entry are very compact on the blocks. So it end up dirty a lot less blocks, of course, lookup will suffer.
Depend on you want check out fast or write a big tree fast, you can't win it all.
Actually, the subdirectory hack has the same effect, so you lose regardless. Doesn't mean that you can't construct cases where the subdirectory hack doesn't win, but I maintain that those are likely to be artificial.
It's probably worth noting that you have to assume htree is on, since that's the typical default for a Linux installation, even if you use the subdirectory hack.
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