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Author Topic: Why is the scatter metaphor used?  (Read 1820 times)

Offline Ulysses_

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Why is the scatter metaphor used?
« on: August 15, 2011, 12:49:01 PM »
TC can be installed in scatter mode, so it was said in a thread.  Somewhere else it says scatter is a bad thing normal operating systems do, or something like that.  And TC prevents scatter.

Why is the scatter metaphor used?  I realize this may be beyond the scope of non-in-depth users, in which case is there some info available somewhere that says why the word "scatter" was used?

Or was it called scatter simply because the file system ends up fragmented after a while, whereas TC does not fragment so much because changes are restored off a zip file in every boot and that's all there is to it?

Offline danielibarnes

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Re: Why is the scatter metaphor used?
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2011, 01:11:56 PM »
My $0.02: when scattered, files are distributed throughout the filesystem losing any association they have with the original source. You lose the information that links these files together. Thus, it becomes more difficult to upgrade, modify, or remove them as a group. With TC, it is a simple matter to add, upgrade, or remove an extension because it is a single squashfs file. It can be non-trivial to perform those same operations on a "scatter" install, which is why it is unsupported.

As for the use of the term, "scatter/gather" is a common programming term used in many places. I'll leave it to an authority to provide a complete etymology. :)
« Last Edit: August 15, 2011, 01:16:26 PM by danielibarnes »

Offline Rich

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Re: Why is the scatter metaphor used?
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2011, 01:23:57 PM »
Hi Ulysses_
I would not read too much into the actual term "scatter". The main point is when you boot tinycore,
it starts by loading the base Linux system. As the boot process continues your apps get "installed",
and the base system gets modified. If you remove an app and reboot, An unmodified base system
gets loaded, your apps install and modify the base system, but there won't be leftover libraries
and such from the app you removed floating around the system. So in the end, if the base system
or an app gets corrupted, rebooting will bring it back to normal.

Offline SunBurnt

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Re: Why is the scatter metaphor used?
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2011, 07:37:28 PM »
From another view... Most of the newer "advanced" type of Linux distros. use compressed Squash files.
A full install of Linux has thousands of files "scattered" on a HD partition. Advanced Linuxes don`t do this.

Loose files as I call it are prone to corruption and viruses, files inside read-only Squash files are secure.
It`s tough to virus a file buried inside a read-only Squash file. But where there`s a will there`s a way...

This is what the trem "scattered files" means on TC`s front web page. The extension files are Squash files.