Re: [PATCH] nanosecond resolution for stat(2)

From: Linus Torvalds (
Date: Mon Sep 23 2002 - 13:57:32 EST

On Mon, 23 Sep 2002, Andi Kleen wrote:
> Some drivers (like mouse drivers or tty) do dubious inode [mac] time
> accesses of the on disk inode and without even marking it dirty. This is
> likely a bug.

No, it is intentional. At least some versions of "w" (maybe all) will use
the tty access times to judge how long the tty has been idle. The point is
that this is all information that is interesting (and useful), but not
worth sending to disk - it is useful only as long as the inode remains
locked in-core for other reasons, ie being in use.

(It's not only "not worth it" to send to disk, but it would be positively
wrong to even _try_ updating the disk with the access times, since we want
these things to work even with a read-only /dev).


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