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From Leon Rosenberg <>
Subject is this a usecase for commons vfs?
Date Mon, 04 May 2009 20:55:00 GMT

in my search for a solution for my problem I came across commons vfs.
After reading the wiki and some of the docs I'm not sure whether I can
(rather not yet, but maybe in the near future?) achieve my task with
commons vfs, hence I'm searching for enlightment.
We have an internal messaging system insite, where users can send each
other mail-like messages. They are stored on disk.
For each user we are storing a mailbox object (serialized java object
with the meta data) and plain text file for each message. There are
several hundreds of messages in each users mailbox, and millions of
users. The approach shows good io performance, but has two weaknesses,
1) we are wasting a lot of inodes with small files
2) backup times are increasing since its hard to backup a lot of small
files (snapshoting our NAS is not a problem, but creating a backup on
FS base is).

What we are looking for is a block-write fs in java, something similar
to what malloc does with memory. We want to write only files of the FS
block size to disk, but write our plain text files at defined
positions in the block files. And of course we want it to happen by
magic :-) By the end of the day we want to have something like few
4096 bytes large files on the fs with 10 496 bytes long messages in

So at first it may sound like a combination of ram:// VFS resources
and a synch mechanism to dump the ram:// resources to files. Is there
something similar already available in/with VFS? If not, it it
realistic for us to implement it on top of existing VFS functionality?

thanks in advance

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