[RC5] If you were writing our next client, what would you put in it?

Christopher Hicks chicks at chicks.net
Tue Apr 27 16:06:29 EDT 1999

On Tue, 27 Apr 1999 CompuPC1 at aol.com wrote:
> I would like to see some kind of system of primary and secondary buffer 
> files.

HAY!  That got me thinking.  Why not make the buffers directories?  If a
block is being worked on it is moved from 'undone' to 'working' so it
doesn't ever get lost accidentally.  Progress for a given block should be
written to it's file in 'working'.  Once it's done with a block it puts it
in a 'done' directory.  Each block has a unique number so making filename
shouldn't be hard.  Each project could have it's own tree.  Something
	|      |
	|      +--working
	|      |
	|      +--done
	|      |
	|      +--working
	|      |
	|      +--done
	.      |
	.      +--working
	.      |
	.      +--done

The advantages of this I see:
 - Fewer blocks permanently lost because blocks are always stored on disk
somewhere.  And you could backup the directories with little worry.
 - Easier to implement sharing.  (If you can't create working/12345678.dat
then you don't delete the undone/12345678.blk and you try a different
 - For those people who are sneakernetting, it'd be really easy to write a
script to move all the done blocks to a floppy and put some new blocks in
 - The working/* files could be use as checkpoint files.

It'd also be nice to be able to resubmit a block if it was determined that
wasn't successfully submitted for whatever reason.  Of course, this could
be a mess if some jerk wanted to resubmit lots of stuff that was already.


If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them
down?  We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason.

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