[linux-audio-user] xruns: file system ext3 --> reiserfs?

Tarragon Allen lists at n12turbo.com
Fri May 2 11:44:01 EDT 2003

On Fri, 2 May 2003 07:15 pm, derek holzer wrote:
> what part of my file system benefits the most from running reiserfs?
> right now, i have everything on one partition, but if i were to break
> this up with seperate /home and / partitions, should they both be
> reiserfs? in short, is it the operating system that benefits from the
> reiserfs, or the directory where your sound files live? i haven't done
> any recording at all yet due to my bad xruns, so it would seem [thus
> far] that my root partition needs a faster file system. or would it be
> better to use a non-journalling system for the root partition [as you
> have above] and reiserfs for the /home partition where the sound gets
> streamed to and from?

I'm partial to using journalling filesystems so that if the system hangs I'm 
less likely to lose data, and reboots will be a lot faster. This is the main 
reason I switched to ext3.

Reiserfs is apparently the filesystem of choice if you want a high performance 
journalling filesystem that will handle many small files (ie: databases, 
squid caches, etc). In my case, I would have just as happily stuck with ext3 
except that Ardour/Jack managed to lock my system every time until I changed 
(even with a patched kernel 2.4.20).

I would say for very small partitions, there's not much use using journalling 
as the journal itself takes up space and for small partitions the reboot 
auto-fsck doesn't take that long anyway. Otherwise most things will benefit 
from journalling, but only in so much as it's a safety precaution. I'm not so 
sure that there's a performance benefit from any journalling filesystem, as 
by definition it's doing more than a non-journalling filesystem, and so there 
is extra overhead involved.

Reiserfs is highly recommended by the Gentoo crowd, if that makes any 

> also, would one use a similar proceedure to the one you have described
> to move the contents of a /home directory in the root partition to a
> seperate /home partition?

Yes. Just cd in /home and do the "cp -axv" (yes, that's an updated version! :) 
to your new partition. The main reason for seperating partitions is so that 
if one program goes crazy and writes lots and lots of data to disk it's not 
going to kill your system. This is particularly important for /var, where all 
the logs go, but can be important in /home. Another reason for seperating 
partitions is so that you can easily re-install or try other distributions, 
yet keep some of the same data between installs/versions (/home being the big 

I have /boot seperate for this reason as well - I can have a gentoo kernel and 
a debian kernel in there, and swap between them happily yet use the same old 
/boot partition.
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