[PC-BSD Dev] Subject: Re: 9.0 Recommendation: partitioning

Lars Engels lars.engels at 0x20.net
Sun Sep 26 11:46:54 PDT 2010

Here's a proposal: let the installer propose the settings according to the user's system. If it's amd64 with sufficient RAM, offer him ZFS, if it's i386 or not enough RAM, offer him UFS+SU+J and explain the pros and cons of having a single or separate partitions.

BTW, I'd say that separate partitions are better when you want to encrypt your hard drive. In most cases it should be enough to encrypt /home and swap.

"Kris Moore" <kris at pcbsd.org> schrieb:

>"Roger Marquis" <marquis at roble.com> wrote:
>>Andrei Kolu wrote:
>>> In case of power failure during some write operations your filesystem
>>> would be inconsistent, that means after restart your filesystem(s)
>>> would be READ-ONLY. Now imagine that you got single / partition and
>>> can't start fsck placed in /stand, you have to start your system from
>>> livecd or something and hope that your partition scheme is not ruined.
>>Journalling is a better protection against boot-time fsck.  At the very
>>least ufs with soft-updates should be the default filesystem.
>>But what Andrei is advocating here is a read-only root.  That is not the
>>default now and, to the best of my knowledge nobody is seriously
>>advocating that as a PC-BSD default.  To create a read-only root you'd
>>need to partition at least /tmp, /usr, and /var, and that would create
>>more issues than it would solve because:
>>  * Every filesystem that has to be mounted at boot is a point-of-failure.
>>  * Unless you also mounted /home you'd need to symlink /usr/home.  This
>>    adds another one or two points-of-failure as well as the path issues
>>    that to accompany directory symlinks.
>>  * An unmountable /usr is worse than an an un-fsck'ed root partition
>>    for all but the most experienced end-users.
>>  * Every intra-disk partition reduces the free space of all remaining
>>    partitions, and increases the risk of diskfull partitions.
>>> Disk full trouble from servers of workstations? With single /
>>> partition your system would be unusable if it is full but with
>>> multiple partitions you are able to use it and at least delete some
>>> files.
>>Hasn't been my experience but then my systems have all used journalling
>>filesystems for several years now.  Plus, anyone who knows how to login
>>to a diskfull system with multi-intra-disk partitions probably also knows
>>how to "mount -o rw /".
>>> Also remember /usr partition  where /usr/home directory with
>>> all users files are stored. Now recall quota feature. You don't want
>>> to set quota for your system processes, do you? Quota is set by
>>> partition.
>>If you need quotas you need partitions no question, however, few
>>end-users need quotas.  If you install non-journalling filesystems you
>>may also benefit from partitions, at the expense of increasing the
>>chances you'll experience inconsistent non-root filesystems.
>>Bottom line, partitions within a disk create more points of failure than
>>they eliminate.  This is statistics 101.  IMO, the defaults should
>>reflect the fact that diskfull issues are more common than quotas and
>>fsck issues for the average user.  The keywords here are "probability"
>>and "average user".
>>More importantly, and the bottom line for PC-BSD, end-users who
>>experience diskfull problems due to unnecessary partitioning or fsck
>>issues due to unjournalled filesystems are more likely to move to an OS
>>with more intelligent defaults.
>>Roger Marquis
>>Dev mailing list
>>Dev at lists.pcbsd.org
>If you want the best of both worlds, just switch to zfs. Using it here, and my zpool uses all the disk space, and creating mount points is a snap. I don't need to worry about running out of room on / or /usr, plus I can treat them as separate partitions.  Or set compression and other options on the fly. :)
>Kris Moore 
>PC-BSD / iXsystems 
>Dev mailing list
>Dev at lists.pcbsd.org

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