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4.9. Configuring atime Updates

Each file inode and directory inode has three time stamps associated with it:

  • ctime — The last time the inode status was changed

  • mtime — The last time the file (or directory) data was modified

  • atime — The last time the file (or directory) data was accessed

If atime updates are enabled as they are by default on GFS and other Linux file systems then every time a file is read, its inode needs to be updated.

Because few applications use the information provided by atime, those updates can require a significant amount of unnecessary write traffic and file-locking traffic. That traffic can degrade performance; therefore, it may be preferable to turn off atime updates.

Two methods of reducing the effects of atime updating are available:

  • Mount with noatime

  • Tune GFS atime quantum

  Published under the terms of the Open Publication License Design by Interspire