read-cache: add index.skipHash config option

The previous change allowed skipping the hashing portion of the
hashwrite API, using it instead as a buffered write API. Disabling the
hashwrite can be particularly helpful when the write operation is in a
critical path.

One such critical path is the writing of the index. This operation is so
critical that the sparse index was created specifically to reduce the
size of the index to make these writes (and reads) faster.

This trade-off between file stability at rest and write-time performance
is not easy to balance. The index is an interesting case for a couple

1. Writes block users. Writing the index takes place in many user-
   blocking foreground operations. The speed improvement directly
   impacts their use. Other file formats are typically written in the
   background (commit-graph, multi-pack-index) or are super-critical to
   correctness (pack-files).

2. Index files are short lived. It is rare that a user leaves an index
   for a long time with many staged changes. Outside of staged changes,
   the index can be completely destroyed and rewritten with minimal
   impact to the user.

Following a similar approach to one used in the microsoft/git fork [1],
add a new config option (index.skipHash) that allows disabling this
hashing during the index write. The cost is that we can no longer
validate the contents for corruption-at-rest using the trailing hash.

[1] 21fed2d914

We load this config from the repository config given by istate->repo,
with a fallback to the_repository if it is not set.

While older Git versions will not recognize the null hash as a special
case, the file format itself is still being met in terms of its
structure. Using this null hash will still allow Git operations to
function across older versions.

The one exception is 'git fsck' which checks the hash of the index file.
This used to be a check on every index read, but was split out to just
the index in a33fc72fe9 (read-cache: force_verify_index_checksum,
2017-04-14) and released first in Git 2.13.0. Document the versions that
relaxed these restrictions, with the optimistic expectation that this
change will be included in Git 2.40.0.

Here, we disable this check if the trailing hash is all zeroes. We add a
warning to the config option that this may cause undesirable behavior
with older Git versions.

As a quick comparison, I tested 'git update-index --force-write' with
and without index.skipHash=true on a copy of the Linux kernel

Benchmark 1: with hash
  Time (mean ± σ):      46.3 ms ±  13.8 ms    [User: 34.3 ms, System: 11.9 ms]
  Range (min … max):    34.3 ms …  79.1 ms    82 runs

Benchmark 2: without hash
  Time (mean ± σ):      26.0 ms ±   7.9 ms    [User: 11.8 ms, System: 14.2 ms]
  Range (min … max):    16.3 ms …  42.0 ms    69 runs

  'without hash' ran
    1.78 ± 0.76 times faster than 'with hash'

These performance benefits are substantial enough to allow users the
ability to opt-in to this feature, even with the potential confusion
with older 'git fsck' versions.

Test this new config option, both at a command-line level and within a
submodule. The confirmation is currently limited to confirm that 'git
fsck' does not complain about the index. Future updates will make this
test more robust.

It is critical that this test is placed before the test_index_version
tests, since those tests obliterate the .git/config file and hence lose
the setting from GIT_TEST_DEFAULT_HASH, if set.

Signed-off-by: Derrick Stolee <>
Signed-off-by: Junio C Hamano <>
This commit is contained in:
Derrick Stolee 2023-01-06 16:31:54 +00:00 committed by Junio C Hamano
parent 1687150b5d
commit ee1f0c242e
3 changed files with 37 additions and 1 deletions

View File

@ -30,3 +30,14 @@ index.version::
Specify the version with which new index files should be
initialized. This does not affect existing repositories.
If `feature.manyFiles` is enabled, then the default is 4.
When enabled, do not compute the trailing hash for the index file.
This accelerates Git commands that manipulate the index, such as
`git add`, `git commit`, or `git status`. Instead of storing the
checksum, write a trailing set of bytes with value zero, indicating
that the computation was skipped.
If you enable `index.skipHash`, then Git clients older than 2.13.0 will
refuse to parse the index and Git clients older than 2.40.0 will report an
error during `git fsck`.

View File

@ -1817,6 +1817,8 @@ static int verify_hdr(const struct cache_header *hdr, unsigned long size)
git_hash_ctx c;
unsigned char hash[GIT_MAX_RAWSZ];
int hdr_version;
unsigned char *start, *end;
struct object_id oid;
if (hdr->hdr_signature != htonl(CACHE_SIGNATURE))
return error(_("bad signature 0x%08x"), hdr->hdr_signature);
@ -1827,10 +1829,16 @@ static int verify_hdr(const struct cache_header *hdr, unsigned long size)
if (!verify_index_checksum)
return 0;
end = (unsigned char *)hdr + size;
start = end - the_hash_algo->rawsz;
oidread(&oid, start);
if (oideq(&oid, null_oid()))
return 0;
the_hash_algo->update_fn(&c, hdr, size - the_hash_algo->rawsz);
the_hash_algo->final_fn(hash, &c);
if (!hasheq(hash, (unsigned char *)hdr + size - the_hash_algo->rawsz))
if (!hasheq(hash, start))
return error(_("bad index file sha1 signature"));
return 0;
@ -2915,9 +2923,12 @@ static int do_write_index(struct index_state *istate, struct tempfile *tempfile,
int ieot_entries = 1;
struct index_entry_offset_table *ieot = NULL;
int nr, nr_threads;
struct repository *r = istate->repo ? istate->repo : the_repository;
f = hashfd(tempfile->fd, tempfile->filename.buf);
repo_config_get_bool(r, "index.skiphash", &f->skip_hash);
for (i = removed = extended = 0; i < entries; i++) {
if (cache[i]->ce_flags & CE_REMOVE)

View File

@ -65,6 +65,20 @@ test_expect_success 'out of bounds index.version issues warning' '
test_expect_success 'index.skipHash config option' '
rm -f .git/index &&
git -c index.skipHash=true add a &&
git fsck &&
test_commit start &&
git -c protocol.file.allow=always submodule add ./ sub &&
git config index.skipHash false &&
git -C sub config index.skipHash true &&
>sub/file &&
git -C sub add a &&
git -C sub fsck
test_index_version () {