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Re: [PATCH 0/5] Add a new "sparse" tree walk algorithm

On Wed, Nov 28 2018, Derrick Stolee via GitGitGadget wrote:

> One of the biggest remaining pain points for users of very large
> repositories is the time it takes to run 'git push'. We inspected some slow
> pushes by our developers and found that the "Enumerating Objects" phase of a
> push was very slow. This is unsurprising, because this is why reachability
> bitmaps exist. However, reachability bitmaps are not available to us because
> of the single pack-file requirement. The bitmap approach is intended for
> servers anyway, and clients have a much different behavior pattern.
> Specifically, clients are normally pushing a very small number of objects
> compared to the entire working directory. A typical user changes only a
> small cone of the working directory, so let's use that to our benefit.
> Create a new "sparse" mode for 'git pack-objects' that uses the paths that
> introduce new objects to direct our search into the reachable trees. By
> collecting trees at each path, we can then recurse into a path only when
> there are uninteresting and interesting trees at that path. This gains a
> significant performance boost for small topics while presenting a
> possibility of packing extra objects.
> The main algorithm change is in patch 4, but is set up a little bit in
> patches 1 and 2.
> As demonstrated in the included test script, we see that the existing
> algorithm can send extra objects due to the way we specify the "frontier".
> But we can send even more objects if a user copies objects from one folder
> to another. I say "copy" because a rename would (usually) change the
> original folder and trigger a walk into that path, discovering the objects.
> In order to benefit from this approach, the user can opt-in using the
> pack.useSparse config setting. This setting can be overridden using the
> '--no-sparse' option.

This is really interesting. I tested this with:

    diff --git a/builtin/pack-objects.c b/builtin/pack-objects.c
    index 124b1bafc4..5c7615f06c 100644
    --- a/builtin/pack-objects.c
    +++ b/builtin/pack-objects.c
    @@ -3143 +3143 @@ static void get_object_list(int ac, const char **av)
    -       mark_edges_uninteresting(&revs, show_edge, sparse);
    +       mark_edges_uninteresting(&revs, show_edge, 1);

To emulate having a GIT_TEST_* mode for this, which seems like a good
idea since it turned up a lot of segfaults in pack-objects. I wasn't
able to get a backtrace for that since it always happens indirectly, and
I didn't dig enough to see how to manually invoke it the right way.