readahead is the file prefetching technology used in the Linux operating system. It is a system call that loads a file's contents into the page cache. When a file is subsequently accessed, its contents are read from physical memory rather than from disk, which is much faster.
Many Linux distributions use readahead on a list of commonly used files to speed up booting. In such a setup, if the kernel is booted with the profile parameter, it will record all file accesses during bootup and write a new list of files to be read before booting. This will make additional installed services start faster, because they are not included in the default readahead list.
- Jonathan Corbet (2005-10-12). "Adaptive file readahead". LWN.net. Retrieved 2014-05-01.
- "readahead(2) - Linux manual page". man7.org. Retrieved 2014-04-09.
- Michael Opdenacker (2007-06-15). "Readahead: time-travel techniques for desktop and embedded systems" (PDF). free-electrons.com. pp. 5–6. Retrieved 2014-05-01.
- "Readahead". fedorahosted.org. Retrieved 2014-04-09.
- "systemd-readahead-replay.service". freedesktop.org. 2014-03-26. Retrieved 2014-04-09.
- Krzysztof Lichota (2008). "Linux solution for prefetching necessary data during application and system startup" (PDF). code.google.com. Retrieved 2014-07-28.
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