Heikki Linnakangas <hlinn...@iki.fi> writes:
> The beauty of the polyphase merge algorithm is that it allows reusing 
> input tapes as output tapes efficiently ... So the whole idea of trying to 
> efficiently reuse input tapes as output tapes is pointless.

It's been awhile since I looked at that code, but I'm quite certain that
it *never* thought it was dealing with actual tapes.  Rather, the point of
sticking with polyphase merge was that it allowed efficient incremental
re-use of temporary disk files, so that the maximum on-disk footprint was
only about equal to the volume of data to be sorted, rather than being a
multiple of that.  Have we thrown that property away?

                        regards, tom lane

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