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Linux Platform Installation Notes

  A.06.30 Release Notes
Eloquence A.06.30 requires new license keys. The default license file includes a new license key for the Eloquence Personal Edition. Please request a new permanent license key using the form included with the delivery or refer to the Eloquence web site at URL http://eloquence.marxmeier.com/license.

Eloquence for the Linux platform is available in separate packages for libc5 and libc6 (also known as glibc 2.0) based systems.

  • Recent Linux distributions (such as SuSE 6.x or RedHat 5.x) are based on libc6 and you should use the libc6 package. Please make sure that at least the following shared library versions are installed:
       libc.so.6 (glibc-2.0.6)
       libm.so.6 (glibc-2.0.6)
  • For libc5 based distributions (eg. SuSE 5.x or Red Hat 4.x) you should choose the libc5 version. Please make sure that at least the following shared library versions are installed:
    Earlier versions are likely to cause problems. For example the libc.so.5.3.12 included with Red Hat does not work with Eloquence and causes random failures.

Eloquence A.06.30 has been compiled with egcs-1.1.2 for the libc6 version and egcs-1.1.1 for the libc5 version and requires the libstdc++.so.2.9.0 shared library. Since this version may not be easily available with older distributions it is included with Eloquence. If your system comes with a libstdc++.so.2.9.0 you have the option to remove the one in the /opt/eloquence6/lib directory to avoid loading the same library twice (which takes additional memory).

Linux kernel version

While Eloquence should work with any Linux kernel version 2.0 and above (currently 2.4 is about to be released shortly) you are encouraged to use the latest stable kernel version which fits for your installed system. New kernel versions include bug fixes, updated drivers and security fixes. Your distribution should provide an updated kernel package which fits for your base system.

For new installations, a recent glibc2.1 based distribution (such as SuSE 6.3 or RedHat 6.1) is recommended.

The following kernel versions are recommended:
2.0 Kernel version 2.0.37 and above is recommended. These kernel versions include a patch to the fsync() system call which is essential when using the eloqdb6 database server with sync writing mode (see below).
2.2 Kernel version 2.2.14 and above is recommended. Since the kernel version is related to your base system, you should check the web site of your Linux distribution for a kernel update.
2.4 Kernel version 2.4 has not been released yet. Please check the Eloquence web site for notes or updates.

Future Eloquence release are likely to no longer support libc5 based systems and Linux kernel versions below 2.2.


Eloquence is available as a rpm package. The rpm package is not specific to a particuar Linux distribution however it has only been tested against SuSE and RedHat distributions. If you encounter a problem during installation, please send us a notice at mailto:support@marxmeier.com.

Please check the Eloquence web site for updates and patches.

To install Eloquence execute the command below:

   rpm -i B1368B-A.06.30.libc6-*.i386.rpm 
Please note if you get an error installing this archive (error -2 reading header: Unknown error) you need to update your rpm to a more recent version.

To update an existing Eloquence installation, please shut down Eloquence and execute the command below:

SuSE Linux:
/sbin/init.d/eloq6 stop
rpm -U B1368B-A.06.30.libc6-*.i386.rpm 
/sbin/init.d/eloq6 start
RedHat Linux:
/etc/rc.d/init.d/eloq6 stop
rpm -U B1368B-A.06.30.libc6-*.i386.rpm 
/etc/rc.d/init.d/eloq6 stop
Installation of automatic startup of Eloquence servers during boot is only performed for SuSE and RedHat distributions. If you are using another Linux distribution, you need to add the start and shut scripts manually. Template files are provided in the directory /opt/eloquence6/newconfig/startup.

Updating from a previous Eloquence version

When updating from a previous Eloquence release the following actions should be performed in additon to updating the software.

License key

If you are using the commercial Eloquence version, please request your new A.06.30 license key before updating Eloquence. Currently no temporary license key is generated on the Linux platform during installation. The new license key can be requested by either submitting the Form enclosed with your software update or on-line at the Eloquence web site: http://eloquence.marxmeier.com/license.

Please comment out the previous license key when adding the new A.06.30 license key to your license file /etc/opt/eloquence6/license. Otherwise the new license may not be recognized and chklic might output the following messages:

  A.06.20: Bad license key revision.
  Duplicate sequence number: Ignoring license

Eloquence Personal Edition

With the Eloquence Personal Edition, please copy the A.06.30 license file template to /etc/opt/eloquence6/license. The new license file includes an updated license key for the Eloquence Personal Edition.
cp /opt/eloquence6/newconfig/config/license /etc/opt/eloquence6/license

Startup configuration on SuSE Linux

The A.06.30 startup script provides additional configuration options. Updating /etc/rc.config is optional. Please check file /opt/eloquence6/newconfig/startup/suse/config.eloq6 and update your /etc/rc.config manually.

New startup config options:

# The following settings are related to starting Eloquence
# automatically during system boot. 
# Start Eloquence daemons? ("yes" or "no")
# The following settings allow specifying startup for specific
# daemons and daemon commandline arguments. They are all optional.
# Set START_ELOQSD to 1 to start the eloqsd daemon.
# Set START_ELOQDB6 to 1 to start the eloqdb6 daemon.

Ext2 filesytem performance in sync write mode

The algorithm used by the ext2 filesystem for syncing buffers to disk is inefficient for big files (this is a known problem but not easy to change). When using the eloqdb6 in sync write mode (which is the default now) this may cause delays and the system may seem to stall for a few seconds when eloqdb6 performs a checkpoint operation (default every 60 seconds). This gets noticeable when the database volume files grow beyound 300 MB and gets worse the bigger the files get.

For Linux kernel version 2.0.3x a patch is available which works around this problem.

--- linux-2.0.36/fs/ext2/fsync.c.orig   Mon Feb  1 03:35:25 1999
+++ linux-2.0.36/fs/ext2/fsync.c        Mon Feb  1 03:42:04 1999
@@ -10,6 +10,8 @@

  *  ext2fs fsync primitive
+ *
+ *  Fast 'fsync' on large files (Scott Laird <laird@pacificrim.net>)

 #include <asm/segment.h>
@@ -172,6 +174,13 @@
                 * Don't sync fast links!
                goto skip;
+       /* fsync on large files is *slow*, so fall back to sync() if
+        * the file's over 10M */
+       if (inode->i_size>10000000) {
+               file_fsync(inode,file);
+               goto skip;
+       }

        for (wait=0; wait<=1; wait++)
This workaround has been included in kernel version 2.0.37 and above. The patch should apply to all recent 2.0.3x kernels. To apply this patch:
cd /usr/src/linux
patch -s -p1 < /path/to/fast-fsync-patch
Afterwards rebuild your kernel.

For Linux kernel version 2.2.x or if you don't want to apply the patch above to your 2.0.3x kernel, the option is to use a larger block size for the ext2 filesystem which holds the database.

File system block size

The eloqdb6 database server always accesses the volume files in 8 KB blocks. Often those read or write requests are combined to access up to 64 KB at a time.

UNIX file systems are usually organized in blocks. The file system block size can be choosen at file system creation time (eg. on Linux by using the -b 4096 command line argument to mk2efs would result in a 4KB block size). For the Linux ext2 file system, the default block size is 1 KB.

In order to maintain your data on the disk, the operating system maintains additional information where your data is located on disk. When files get bigger so does the overhead to keep track where your data is located.
Enlarging the file system block size greatly reduces the amount of overhead required to maintain your data if you use big files (as eloqdb6 does) at the expense of using slightly more disk space for small files.

Background: In addition to the data blocks (holding the file contents) additional information is maintained where the data blocks are actually located on the disk. When the file size exceeds a trivial size, the location of the data blocks is also maintained in a separate block on disk (indirect blocks - which the OS also needs to keep track of). At some point (depending on file size and block size) you need blocks that specify the location of blocks that specify the location of your data on disk (double indirection). At this point maintaining this information becomes a factor when reading or writing the database.

While a block size of 8 KB would be a "perfect fit", the max. usable block size depends on the architecture (processor). On the x86 this is 4 KB. We recommend to specify a block size of 4 KB for the Linux platform to create a file system dedicated to hold your database.

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