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Re: Multi-Minute Startup?

On Thu, 7 Aug 2008, Aaron Davies wrote:
On Thu, Aug 7, 2008 at 3:33 PM, Benjamin R. Haskell <zsh@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Something similar came up just under a month ago on this list:

Eric D. Friedman wrote:
Subject: new-style completion and large numbers of users

I'm using zsh 4.2.0 on a machine with a very large number of users. When I
first log on and do a completion of any kind, it triggers a cache-load of
all of the user names, which is quite time consuming. I'd like to disable


Looking at compaudit itself, it looks like it's still running "getent group".

Looking at compaudit more closely leads me to think something might be awry with your environment variables (either LOGNAME or EGID). On my system (Gentoo w/Zsh 4.3.4), the parts of compaudit germane to getent are:

[[ -x /usr/bin/getent ]] || getent() {
  if [[ $2 = <-> ]]; then
    grep ":$2:[^:]*$" /etc/$1
    grep "^$2:" /etc/$1

# ... trimmed

# RedHat Linux "per-user groups" check.  This is tricky, because it's very
# difficult to tell whether the sysadmin has put someone else into your
# "private" group (e.g., via the default group field in /etc/passwd, or
# by NFS group sharing with an untrustworthy machine).  So we must assume
# that this has not happened, and pick the best group.

local GROUP GROUPMEM _i_pw _i_gid _i_ulwdirs
if ((UID == EUID )); then
  getent group $LOGNAME | IFS=: read GROUP _i_pw _i_gid GROUPMEM
  getent group $EGID | IFS=: read GROUP _i_pw _i_gid GROUPMEM

Is getent installed in /usr/bin on that machine? If not, maybe it's doing a grep over a large, generated file? (Three minutes seems excessive, though.)

If getent is there, maybe LOGNAME or EGID (whichever path is appropriate) is unset. So, instead of (w/ a username of 'aaron'):

getent group aaron | IFS=: read GROUP _i_pw _i_gid GROUPMEM
(finding a specific group's members, which should be fast, even over a long distance -- otherwise many common operations would be annoyingly slow)

it becomes:

getent group | IFS=: read GROUP _i_pw _i_gid GROUPMEM
(which should be slow, since you're reading all 10,000 groups)

Can you find the specific invocation of getent that's slow for you?


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