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Re: Today's problem with GUB build

From: David Kastrup
Subject: Re: Today's problem with GUB build
Date: Wed, 15 Jul 2020 22:48:06 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/28.0.50 (gnu/linux)

Jonas Hahnfeld <> writes:

> Am Mittwoch, den 15.07.2020, 21:35 +0200 schrieb David Kastrup:
>> Jonas Hahnfeld <> writes:
>> > Am Mittwoch, den 15.07.2020, 17:31 +0100 schrieb Phil Holmes:
>> > > Here's the logfile and the ly file.
>> > 
>> > Could this be collisions of the random file names generated for
>> > temporary files? The argument to backend-library.scm:248 comes
>> > from create-file-exclusive which returns #f if the file already exists
>> > (or could not be created).
>> I had commented on the respective issue without response that the
>> parallel processes, without taking additional measures, will generate
>> the same "random" sequence, making this no better than just using
>> sequential numbers.
> "additional measures" are in place: multi-fork calls randomize-rand-
> seed *after* forking. The seed is initialized based on the current
> timestamp (might be the same) and the pid (different in the course of
> one run). We can still have collisions, but the amount of trouble (or
> rather the lack of reports until now) indicates that it is better than
> sequential numbers. This was discussed (and answered) in the review.

Well ok.  But only 1000000 random numbers are being used (there is
another call using 10000000 instead, the choice appearing random).
Let's assume we have 10 processes going through 138 files each.  The
processes are going to switch to the next output file asynchronously, so
with any change, there is a chance of the old number colliding with the
other processes' numbers, and the new number colliding.  The probability
that a new number is different from an existing set of 9 is
999991/1000000.  If we do this switch 1380 times, the probability of a
collision during one run is 1-(999991/1000000)^1380, about 1 in 80.

Now if I remember correctly, there were some changes in how
lilypond-book worked that typically resulted in double the number of
processes getting spawned than asked for which would give us 19 instead
of 9 possibilities for collision.  That would raise the probability of a
collision to about 1 in 40 runs.

David Kastrup

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