Re: Linux-Sparc ext2 compatibility?

Bryn Paul Arnold Jones (
Wed, 21 Aug 1996 21:41:43 +0100 (BST)

On Tue, 20 Aug 1996, Theodore Y. Ts'o wrote:

> As a result, e2fsprogs on a Sparc will fail most of the e2fsck
> regression tests, since the filesystem formats are incompatible.
> This is bad --- very bad. It means that you can't take a ext2 floppy
> and use it as an interchange mechanism between a Sparc Linux box and a
> i386 Linux box. It means you can't just say, "This external 1GB scsi
> disk has an ext2 filesystem on it". You have to qualify it with whether
> it is a Sparc ext2 filesystem or a i386 ext2 filesystem.
> The question now is --- how do we fix this? Are there enough Sparc
> Linux boxes out there that it's too late to do a flag day? Do we need
> to put a lot of complexity into the kernel code and the e2fsprogs
> utilities so that we can recognize different versions of the bitmasks
> and do the appropriate byte swapping on the bitmasks? (This can be
> done, but at some performance cost).
> Or, we could decide that we don't care, and just simply leave things in
> an incompatible state. That would be a real shame though, I think.
> - Ted

IMHO, fix it ASAP, and write a utiltiy to convert from one to the other.
ie build and install the next kernel that's not going to like things, boot
with a root disk, convert the fs, boot the new kernel and your done ;)


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