This document is for a development version of Ceph.


LazyIO relaxes POSIX semantics. Buffered reads/writes are allowed even when a file is opened by multiple applications on multiple clients. Applications are responsible for managing cache coherency themselves.

Libcephfs supports LazyIO since nautilus release.

Enable LazyIO

LazyIO can be enabled by following ways.

  • client_force_lazyio option enables LAZY_IO globally for libcephfs and ceph-fuse mount.

  • ceph_lazyio(...) and ceph_ll_lazyio(...) enable LAZY_IO for file handle in libcephfs.

Using LazyIO

LazyIO includes two methods lazyio_propagate() and lazyio_synchronize(). With LazyIO enabled, writes may not be visible to other clients until lazyio_propagate() is called. Reads may come from local cache (irrespective of changes to the file by other clients) until lazyio_synchronize() is called.

  • lazyio_propagate(int fd, loff_t offset, size_t count) - Ensures that any buffered writes of the client, in the specific region (offset to offset+count), has been propagated to the shared file. If offset and count are both 0, the operation is performed on the entire file. Currently only this is supported.

  • lazyio_synchronize(int fd, loff_t offset, size_t count) - Ensures that the client is, in a subsequent read call, able to read the updated file with all the propagated writes of the other clients. In CephFS this is facilitated by invalidating the file caches pertaining to the inode and hence forces the client to refetch/recache the data from the updated file. Also if the write cache of the calling client is dirty (not propagated), lazyio_synchronize() flushes it as well.

An example usage (utilizing libcephfs) is given below. This is a sample I/O loop for a particular client/file descriptor in a parallel application:

/* Client a (ca) opens the shared file file.txt */
int fda = ceph_open(ca, "shared_file.txt", O_CREAT|O_RDWR, 0644);

/* Enable LazyIO for fda */
ceph_lazyio(ca, fda, 1));

for(i = 0; i < num_iters; i++) {
    char out_buf[] = "fooooooooo";

    ceph_write(ca, fda, out_buf, sizeof(out_buf), i);
    /* Propagate the writes associated with fda to the backing storage*/
    ceph_propagate(ca, fda, 0, 0);

    /* The barrier makes sure changes associated with all file descriptors
    are propagated so that there is certainty that the backing file
    is up to date */

    char in_buf[40];
    /* Calling ceph_lazyio_synchronize here will ascertain that ca will
    read the updated file with the propagated changes and not read
    stale cached data */
    ceph_lazyio_synchronize(ca, fda, 0, 0);
    ceph_read(ca, fda, in_buf, sizeof(in_buf), 0);

    /* A barrier is required here before returning to the next write
    phase so as to avoid overwriting the portion of the shared file still
    being read by another file descriptor */

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