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+SQUASHFS 4.0 FILESYSTEM
+=======================
+
+Squashfs is a compressed read-only filesystem for Linux.
+It uses zlib/lzo/xz compression to compress files, inodes and directories.
+Inodes in the system are very small and all blocks are packed to minimise
+data overhead. Block sizes greater than 4K are supported up to a maximum
+of 1Mbytes (default block size 128K).
+
+Squashfs is intended for general read-only filesystem use, for archival
+use (i.e. in cases where a .tar.gz file may be used), and in constrained
+block device/memory systems (e.g. embedded systems) where low overhead is
+needed.
+
+Mailing list: squashfs-devel@lists.sourceforge.net
+Web site: www.squashfs.org
+
+1. FILESYSTEM FEATURES
+----------------------
+
+Squashfs filesystem features versus Cramfs:
+
+ Squashfs Cramfs
+
+Max filesystem size: 2^64 256 MiB
+Max file size: ~ 2 TiB 16 MiB
+Max files: unlimited unlimited
+Max directories: unlimited unlimited
+Max entries per directory: unlimited unlimited
+Max block size: 1 MiB 4 KiB
+Metadata compression: yes no
+Directory indexes: yes no
+Sparse file support: yes no
+Tail-end packing (fragments): yes no
+Exportable (NFS etc.): yes no
+Hard link support: yes no
+"." and ".." in readdir: yes no
+Real inode numbers: yes no
+32-bit uids/gids: yes no
+File creation time: yes no
+Xattr support: yes no
+ACL support: no no
+
+Squashfs compresses data, inodes and directories. In addition, inode and
+directory data are highly compacted, and packed on byte boundaries. Each
+compressed inode is on average 8 bytes in length (the exact length varies on
+file type, i.e. regular file, directory, symbolic link, and block/char device
+inodes have different sizes).
+
+2. USING SQUASHFS
+-----------------
+
+As squashfs is a read-only filesystem, the mksquashfs program must be used to
+create populated squashfs filesystems. This and other squashfs utilities
+can be obtained from http://www.squashfs.org. Usage instructions can be
+obtained from this site also.
+
+The squashfs-tools development tree is now located on kernel.org
+ git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/fs/squashfs/squashfs-tools.git
+
+3. SQUASHFS FILESYSTEM DESIGN
+-----------------------------
+
+A squashfs filesystem consists of a maximum of nine parts, packed together on a
+byte alignment:
+
+ ---------------
+ | superblock |
+ |---------------|
+ | compression |
+ | options |
+ |---------------|
+ | datablocks |
+ | & fragments |
+ |---------------|
+ | inode table |
+ |---------------|
+ | directory |
+ | table |
+ |---------------|
+ | fragment |
+ | table |
+ |---------------|
+ | export |
+ | table |
+ |---------------|
+ | uid/gid |
+ | lookup table |
+ |---------------|
+ | xattr |
+ | table |
+ ---------------
+
+Compressed data blocks are written to the filesystem as files are read from
+the source directory, and checked for duplicates. Once all file data has been
+written the completed inode, directory, fragment, export, uid/gid lookup and
+xattr tables are written.
+
+3.1 Compression options
+-----------------------
+
+Compressors can optionally support compression specific options (e.g.
+dictionary size). If non-default compression options have been used, then
+these are stored here.
+
+3.2 Inodes
+----------
+
+Metadata (inodes and directories) are compressed in 8Kbyte blocks. Each
+compressed block is prefixed by a two byte length, the top bit is set if the
+block is uncompressed. A block will be uncompressed if the -noI option is set,
+or if the compressed block was larger than the uncompressed block.
+
+Inodes are packed into the metadata blocks, and are not aligned to block
+boundaries, therefore inodes overlap compressed blocks. Inodes are identified
+by a 48-bit number which encodes the location of the compressed metadata block
+containing the inode, and the byte offset into that block where the inode is
+placed (<block, offset>).
+
+To maximise compression there are different inodes for each file type
+(regular file, directory, device, etc.), the inode contents and length
+varying with the type.
+
+To further maximise compression, two types of regular file inode and
+directory inode are defined: inodes optimised for frequently occurring
+regular files and directories, and extended types where extra
+information has to be stored.
+
+3.3 Directories
+---------------
+
+Like inodes, directories are packed into compressed metadata blocks, stored
+in a directory table. Directories are accessed using the start address of
+the metablock containing the directory and the offset into the
+decompressed block (<block, offset>).
+
+Directories are organised in a slightly complex way, and are not simply
+a list of file names. The organisation takes advantage of the
+fact that (in most cases) the inodes of the files will be in the same
+compressed metadata block, and therefore, can share the start block.
+Directories are therefore organised in a two level list, a directory
+header containing the shared start block value, and a sequence of directory
+entries, each of which share the shared start block. A new directory header
+is written once/if the inode start block changes. The directory
+header/directory entry list is repeated as many times as necessary.
+
+Directories are sorted, and can contain a directory index to speed up
+file lookup. Directory indexes store one entry per metablock, each entry
+storing the index/filename mapping to the first directory header
+in each metadata block. Directories are sorted in alphabetical order,
+and at lookup the index is scanned linearly looking for the first filename
+alphabetically larger than the filename being looked up. At this point the
+location of the metadata block the filename is in has been found.
+The general idea of the index is to ensure only one metadata block needs to be
+decompressed to do a lookup irrespective of the length of the directory.
+This scheme has the advantage that it doesn't require extra memory overhead
+and doesn't require much extra storage on disk.
+
+3.4 File data
+-------------
+
+Regular files consist of a sequence of contiguous compressed blocks, and/or a
+compressed fragment block (tail-end packed block). The compressed size
+of each datablock is stored in a block list contained within the
+file inode.
+
+To speed up access to datablocks when reading 'large' files (256 Mbytes or
+larger), the code implements an index cache that caches the mapping from
+block index to datablock location on disk.
+
+The index cache allows Squashfs to handle large files (up to 1.75 TiB) while
+retaining a simple and space-efficient block list on disk. The cache
+is split into slots, caching up to eight 224 GiB files (128 KiB blocks).
+Larger files use multiple slots, with 1.75 TiB files using all 8 slots.
+The index cache is designed to be memory efficient, and by default uses
+16 KiB.
+
+3.5 Fragment lookup table
+-------------------------
+
+Regular files can contain a fragment index which is mapped to a fragment
+location on disk and compressed size using a fragment lookup table. This
+fragment lookup table is itself stored compressed into metadata blocks.
+A second index table is used to locate these. This second index table for
+speed of access (and because it is small) is read at mount time and cached
+in memory.
+
+3.6 Uid/gid lookup table
+------------------------
+
+For space efficiency regular files store uid and gid indexes, which are
+converted to 32-bit uids/gids using an id look up table. This table is
+stored compressed into metadata blocks. A second index table is used to
+locate these. This second index table for speed of access (and because it
+is small) is read at mount time and cached in memory.
+
+3.7 Export table
+----------------
+
+To enable Squashfs filesystems to be exportable (via NFS etc.) filesystems
+can optionally (disabled with the -no-exports Mksquashfs option) contain
+an inode number to inode disk location lookup table. This is required to
+enable Squashfs to map inode numbers passed in filehandles to the inode
+location on disk, which is necessary when the export code reinstantiates
+expired/flushed inodes.
+
+This table is stored compressed into metadata blocks. A second index table is
+used to locate these. This second index table for speed of access (and because
+it is small) is read at mount time and cached in memory.
+
+3.8 Xattr table
+---------------
+
+The xattr table contains extended attributes for each inode. The xattrs
+for each inode are stored in a list, each list entry containing a type,
+name and value field. The type field encodes the xattr prefix
+("user.", "trusted." etc) and it also encodes how the name/value fields
+should be interpreted. Currently the type indicates whether the value
+is stored inline (in which case the value field contains the xattr value),
+or if it is stored out of line (in which case the value field stores a
+reference to where the actual value is stored). This allows large values
+to be stored out of line improving scanning and lookup performance and it
+also allows values to be de-duplicated, the value being stored once, and
+all other occurrences holding an out of line reference to that value.
+
+The xattr lists are packed into compressed 8K metadata blocks.
+To reduce overhead in inodes, rather than storing the on-disk
+location of the xattr list inside each inode, a 32-bit xattr id
+is stored. This xattr id is mapped into the location of the xattr
+list using a second xattr id lookup table.
+
+4. TODOS AND OUTSTANDING ISSUES
+-------------------------------
+
+4.1 Todo list
+-------------
+
+Implement ACL support.
+
+4.2 Squashfs internal cache
+---------------------------
+
+Blocks in Squashfs are compressed. To avoid repeatedly decompressing
+recently accessed data Squashfs uses two small metadata and fragment caches.
+
+The cache is not used for file datablocks, these are decompressed and cached in
+the page-cache in the normal way. The cache is used to temporarily cache
+fragment and metadata blocks which have been read as a result of a metadata
+(i.e. inode or directory) or fragment access. Because metadata and fragments
+are packed together into blocks (to gain greater compression) the read of a
+particular piece of metadata or fragment will retrieve other metadata/fragments
+which have been packed with it, these because of locality-of-reference may be
+read in the near future. Temporarily caching them ensures they are available
+for near future access without requiring an additional read and decompress.
+
+In the future this internal cache may be replaced with an implementation which
+uses the kernel page cache. Because the page cache operates on page sized
+units this may introduce additional complexity in terms of locking and
+associated race conditions.