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Bug 210876 - 'grep' takes minutes to complete the operation if using invert-match and "or"
'grep' takes minutes to complete the operation if using invert-match and "or"
Product: Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4
Classification: Red Hat
Component: grep (Show other bugs)
ia64 Linux
medium Severity medium
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Assigned To: Tim Waugh
Depends On:
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2006-10-16 09:45 EDT by theresa.chin
Modified: 2007-11-16 20:14 EST (History)
0 users

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Fixed In Version:
Doc Type: Bug Fix
Doc Text:
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Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2006-10-17 09:39:42 EDT
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RHEL 7.3 requirements from Atomic Host:
Cloudforms Team: ---

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Description theresa.chin 2006-10-16 09:45:20 EDT
From Bugzilla Helper:
User-Agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; SV1; .NET CLR 1.0.3705; .NET CLR 1.1.4322; .NET CLR 2.0.50727)

Description of problem:
To be clear, this appears to be a RHEL4 Intel issue. This has been reproduced on IA64 servers and EMT64 workstation.  It does *not* occur on an AMD Opteron WS.

If a grep is constructed such that an extended "or" and invert-match which causes a large number of files to be omitted are used, the time it takes to complete the operation is in minutes even though it should take sub-seconds.

Below are some examples showing the individual operations taking a few seconds, but when adding the "or", it takes minutes.  This was done against a 5mb text file.  
On the AMD opteron using the same command/file, it takes .3 seconds!

[root@can16 ~]# time egrep -iv '100' /boot/System.map|wc
     61     183    2601

real    0m0.232s
user    0m0.228s
sys     0m0.003s
[root@can16 ~]# time egrep -iv '200' /boot/System.map|wc
  21183   63549  837563

real    0m0.164s
user    0m0.267s
sys     0m0.002s
[root@can16 ~]# time egrep -iv '100|200' /boot/System.map|wc
     60     180    2553

real    0m40.504s
user    0m40.398s
sys     0m0.018s
[root@can16 ~]#

We need a fix for this from Red Hat.

Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):

How reproducible:

Steps to Reproduce:
1. Create a large text file (e.g. 5 MB text file) to search pattern.
2. Do the 'egrep' operation on the file with "or" and invert-match to cause a large number of files to be omitted.
3. Time the operation for completion.  See the examples in the bug Description.

Actual Results:
The grep operation with -E (egrep) and "or" and "invert-match" took minutes to complete.

Expected Results:
The operation should have taken sub-seconds.

Additional info:
Comment 1 Tim Waugh 2006-10-16 12:14:35 EDT
Please try the package from the latest update (Update 4), which contains several
changes to address performance problems.

Alternatively if your search pattern contains no '.' or non-ASCII characters,
you can speed the operation up significantly by getting grep to process the
input as ASCII instead of the default UTF-8.  Just set 'LC_CTYPE=C' in the
environment ('export LC_CTYPE=C' in bash).
Comment 2 theresa.chin 2006-10-17 09:09:17 EDT
Thank you for the solution.  We've tried the latest update version of 
grep 'grep-2.5.1-32.2.ia64.rpm' and the slow operation problem has been 

Best regards,

Theresa Chin

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