Dan Drust

Software Engineer
based in West Michigan

Database Daily: Sorting a Single Page

29 April 2023

Goal: Read a page from a database file, sort it, and write the sorted result back to disk.

Round 2 for today! A bonus round!

I re-built the ratings database file to use the updated format that I worked out this morning. From there, I played around with IO.pread (positional read) to grab a 4kb chunk at a 4096 byte offset. Worked like a charm!

From there, I started extracting the table-scanning iterator into it’s own executor class. Since you can wrap a string with the StringIO class, the Scanner class can take a File or a StringIO.

Finally, sort_chunk.rb is a proof-of-concept for reading a chunk of a database file, sorting it in-memory, and then writing the result back to disk.

Next up is to write an out-of-core sorting algorithm to sort the entire ratings database file!

Written by Dan Drust on 29 April 2023

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