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README.md

This is a work-in-progress.

The aim is to create a persistent on-disk map for use as an Irmin backing store.

Assumptions and consequences

  • This will be optimised for append operations (since Irmin is history-preserving)

Append operations are efficient on SSD devices since an update to an allocated sector involves erasing and rewriting a whole block (see CloudFS).

  • This will be single-reader and single-writer, like a traditional (non-clustered) filesystem.

We will not need to implement locking or fencing, as all locks will be stored in the memory of the single process accessing it.

  • This will be transactional: updates will either be committed or not.

We will not support grey-areas such as modes where metadata is committed but data is not.

Design

The system will have 2 layers:

  1. a heap supporting object allocation and deallocation. Space will be reclaimed by means of a garbage collector. This is similar to the OCaml heap but over a BLOCK device.
  2. a b-tree supporting functional update i.e. an update will require a new root to be created, referencing some new and some existing tree nodes, which will be atomically switched to commit the update.

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A b-tree implementation for Mirage BLOCK devices

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