Re: file monitoring choice

  • From: <tpgww@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: emelfm2@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 4 Sep 2007 16:45:57 +1000

On Tue, 4 Sep 2007 06:37:41 +0200
"Liviu Andronic" <landronimirc@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Hello everyone,
> emelFM2 allows one on Linux, at build time, to select out of four
> different ways of monitoring files: inotify, dnotify, fam and gamin.
> From this Gentoo article,
>, I
> understand that inotify is preferable to dnotify and gamin to fam.
> However, out of the better two, which one is best: inotify or gamin?
> Thanks in advance,
> Liviu
Well, they have different characteristics, and a simple A versus B comparison 
is not necessarily easy.

For example,
gamin needs a daemon/server to work, but kernel-based mechanisms like inotify 
gamin will try to use kernel-based monitor if possible, and can fall back to 
polling each monitored item when other things fail
gamin supports one or two kernel-based monitors for os's other than linux
gamin can't (or last time I checked, couldn't) monitor all places - a few were 
excluded, I forget why
gamin can't (or last time I checked, couldn't) monitor all types of changes 
that we may be interested in
gamin can't (or last time I checked, couldn't) comply with its (and FAM's) 
stated policy of NOT looking through symlinks i.e. targets are monitored

FWIW the reason I created the kernel-based monitors for e2 was to avoid gamin's 
failings. That was quite a while ago, they may be fixed now. For my own use, I 
always build with inotify. If everyone used linux, and with a kernel >= 2.6.13 
or whatever, I'd make inotify the default.


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