August 28th, 2012

mini me + poo

Recursion, n. See recursion

As nothing much apart from email was going to change on the PC while I was away, I thought I would set up the offline backup service I use to backup the whole of my home directory rather than just the important-ish bits.

I come back last night to find that not only hadn't it finished, it hadn't even started!

The first thing it does prior to each backup is look at what files it needs to backup. It turns out that WINE's directory contains directories which are actually links to all of your hard drives and partitions, so that they can be presented to Windows programs as C:, D: etc etc. So what was happening is that the backup program was looking at everything, discovering these 'directories', looking at them, discovering that one of them - the one with my home partition - had these 'directories', looking at them, discovering that...

I'm not sure just how deep the recursion got before the program gave up because the path names to the files were too long, but the number of files it thought I had was enormous.

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