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[leafnode-list] texpire and long expiry times

Way back in November 2008  I changed the expiry for one group from 42 days
to 366 days. I then didn't see any articles expire for that group
until around December 2009 (more or less expected). However once the
anniversary passed when lots of articles were deleted it went back to no
articles at all being deleted.

This group has posts more or less every day so I was expecting it to be
trimming back ones which were over a year old. They're aren't any *very*
long threads (I was just using texpire -vvvv) and I using my newsreader
wasn't inspecting very old articles (just me using the server) so I'm a bit
puzzled as to why nothing was being expired.

I've just run with -f and I get

sudo -u news /usr/local/sbin/texpire -vvvv -f uk.religion.christian
texpire 2.0.0.alpha20060428a: check mtime only
uk.religion.christian: 10667 articles deleted, 17861 kept
message.id: 10667 articles deleted, 39371 kept
Checking if there are local posts sitting in the queue...
found 0 articles in in.coming.

so it would appear that the access time is being modified, but that doesn't
- afaict - explain why lots of them were expired on the anniversary.

Looking at the relevant spool directory I'm still seeing - after the above
texpire run - lots dating from Nov 2008, articles which - afaicr - didn't
form huge threads. There's then a gap until Feb 2009 another gap and then a
more uniform distribution where the threads prob extended to 12 months ago.

I realise that that leafnode 2 version is getting a little long in the
tooth but I can't see - looking at NEWS - see any changes which might
affect this.

The man page says (under Bugs)

    Texpire is unable to delete articles in groups which have non-consecutive
    numbers with huge gaps.

Could it be that the time it hit expire at the end of 2009 lots of articles
were deleted and that left 'huge' gaps? - there don't appear on a quick scan
to be any gaps larger than around 200.

Links and things http://rmstar.blogspot.com/
Robert Marshall
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