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Sometimes you go down a rabbit-hole and remember that you switched your preferred file system because its author murdered his ex-wife.

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After getting to Georgia Tech I restarted my adventures in source-based GNU/Linux distributions with Gentoo. I found myself very interested in what was going on with desktop responsiveness. I didn't have a great computer so the fact that Gentoo had special builds dedicated to desktop responsiveness appealed to me.

One of the suggestions in that category was a filesystem known as ReiserFS 3. I tried it out and it worked great on my computer. Over time I switched everything except my boot drives over to ReiserFS 3. The boot drive stayed on ext2.

This was around the same time I first started reading LWN and found out both that a ReiserFS 4 was in development, that this filesystem was named after its creator, and that the process was very contentious. There was strong push-back against Hans Reiser and Namesys from the Linux kernel community because the filesystem code wasn't really written in the normal kernel style. It had its own custom implementation of data structures and other sorts of things that make it hard for regular kernel maintainers to update it. Namesys and Hans Reiser assured the kernel devs this wouldn't be a problem because they intended to be around supporting ReiserFS 4 themselves.

In 2006 Hans Reiser murdered his estranged wife. He drained money out of Namesys to pay for his legal defense. In 2008 Hans Reiser was convicted for the murder.

Long before he was actually convicted I believed he'd done this because his story was essentially unbelievable. They found some of her blood in her car and he decided to remove the entire passenger seat from his vehicle the same day she went missing.

There's no doubt now though because he led the police to her body for a reduced sentence.

Somewhere in there I moved to xfs for my data drives and to ext3 for boot.

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This came up again because of a comment on another ongoing drama in development land. There's a developer on the outs for making pretty shitty code. The article covering it pointed out he'd been convicted of crimes related to being a shitty landlord.

Somebody in the comments claimed that behavior outside of their direct development work shouldn't have any bearing on what goes on with the development work. I made a simple reply reminding him of the Hans Reiser saga.

lwn.net/Articles/851072/

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