Re: mix format
On Tue, Feb 27, 2007 at 10:36:56PM -0500, Derek Martin wrote:
> On Tue, Feb 27, 2007 at 11:09:01AM -0800, William Yardley wrote:
> > Is there any interest in supporting mix format in mutt? The idea
> > seems interesting to me - it's kind of a hybrid of Maildir and mbox
> > - there are multiple messages per file, but they're broken up into
> > smaller chunks.
> Damn, and I thought I had an original idea... I actually was thinking
> about this very thing earlier today. Did he post any benchmarks
> comparing performance against mbox and/or maildir?
Mark's comments to the alpine list were as follows:
> It would of course also be interested to see some actual benchmarks
> of mix vs. other mail formats, and uw-imapd with mix vs. other imap
There are lies, damned lies, and benchmarks. The problem with
benchmarks is that they tend to be biased towards what the benchmarker
feels are important.
I did post some comparative performance of mix vs. traditional UNIX
(mbox) and mbx formats to the imap-uw mailing list. The big win for
mix is mailbox open. Even huge mailboxes are opened almost
instantaneously with mix, even if the mailbox data is not in the buffer
cache. With traditional UNIX and mbx, it makes a big difference if the
mailbox data is in the buffer cache.
The first sort in a session is a lot faster in mix if there's a sort
Expunge is generally faster in mix. Expunging a low sequence number
message in a large mbox or mbx file requires rewriting almost the
entire file; in mix it generally requires only a rewrite of a
relatively small (1MB) file. I use the weasel-word "generally" since
there are certain exceptions, but the worst case in mix is no worse
than mbox or mbx.
Message fetching is about the same in mix as it is in mbx; both mix and
mbx are somewhat faster than mbox (especially with large messages).
I haven't looked, but I imagine there's some more detailed info on the
Mark's been complaining about Maildir for years, so I'm glad to see that
he's making a stab at making something that addresses his complaints
about the format.
btw, if anyone hasn't been following it, Pine's license has changed to
the Apache license, and it's being released as a new project - Alpine
So will be interesting to see if this heats things up in the console
mailer arena. Obviously Pine has a slightly different audience, but I've
heard of a lot of free software nuts who use mutt because they like its
license better and / or because it's distributed in binary form for an
operating system they use.