ZFS Port: Midterm Report

Blog post by generalmaximus on Tue, 2011-07-19 09:44

My midterm goal was porting libzpool -- which contains most of the ZFS code -- to Haiku. Another midterm goal was to get ztest -- the ZFS testing tool --- to run on Haiku. Being able to run ztest in a loop for an entire day means that about 80% of the ported code is working fine (though the remaining 20% is the most difficult part of the entire porting process). ztest is a userland test, so actual file system modules or disks are not involved in the testing procedure -- ztest creates block files in a temporary directory and treats them as disks.

It took me days of fighting with the linker and the compiler, but I'm happy to report that both ztest and libzpool build on Haiku without errors! Does that mean I can run ztest for a day without problems? Sadly, that is not the case. ztest is unable to create ZFS storage pools and fails within a second of starting up. I am currently trying to investigate and fix this crash. Fixing this one crash will reveal more crashes, and running ztest with several threads will reveal subtle threading issues. This means I have my work cut out for me ;)

Meanwhile, I have also started porting libzfs, which is the library used by the zfs and zpool administration tools to communicate with ZFS code in the kernel. This communication occurs as ioctl() calls on /dev/zfs. My goals for the quarter term are getting libzfs, along with zpool and zfs, to build on Haiku. Of course, an additional goal is to get ztest to run without crashing.

You can follow the project at http://github.com/GeneralMaximus/zfs-haiku. Building ztest is as easy as cloning the repository, changing into the zfs-haiku directory, and typing "jam ztest". The ztest executable is generated in the debug.X86 directory.