Optimizing partition scheme..

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Optimizing partition scheme..

Postby mcastel on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:21 am

Hello,

I'm running Elyssa on a desktop with two hard disk; at the moment writing my whole system is contained in only one partition (apart swap), which includes /home, in the first disk; the second is not used apart from some backup data.

Now I'm ready for make a clean install of Felicia, and I'm wondering if to revise my simple partition scheme. In particular, I want to set a dedicated partition for /home. My question is the following: what is more efficient, in term of r/w access to data, to have all partition (root, swap, home) on one disc, or some on the first and some on the second (and which, if this is the case)?

Thanks a lot in advance,

Marco
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Re: Optimizing partition scheme..

Postby maiconmls on Fri Dec 19, 2008 8:50 am

Hello Marco,

This link ( http://www.linuxmint.com/wiki/index.php/How_to_partition ) can provide you some very usefull information about partitioning your Mint System.

I hope this can help you...
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Re: Optimizing partition scheme..

Postby mcastel on Mon Jan 05, 2009 7:08 am

maiconmls wrote:Hello Marco,

This link ( http://www.linuxmint.com/wiki/index.php/How_to_partition ) can provide you some very usefull information about partitioning your Mint System.

I hope this can help you...


Thanks; the page is quite informative and I was not aware of it! Anyway, for what I understand, it doesn't specify if it's better to keep all partitions in a single disc or to distribuite them between two disks...

Regards,

Marco
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Re: Optimizing partition scheme..

Postby Fred on Mon Jan 05, 2009 3:25 pm

mcastel,

The answer to your question is not a simple yes or no. Let me try to explain. The drive controllers can be accessed in parallel. If you have the operating system on one controller and a data partition on another controller, you can access data on that partition faster than you could if both the OS and data partition were on the same controller. Keep in mind that usually each controller can access two drives. They are usually 1&2 on the first controller and 3&4 on the second controller. The fastest setup for two drives would be to put one drive on controller one and the other drive on controller two. So nominally you would have a drive on position 1 and another on position 3.

From a partitioning point of view, it is hard to say just what might be the fastest partitioning for you. It would depend on what kind of programs and data stores you have/use. As an example, if you have lots of data you need to access, ie. a database, putting the database on one drive and the OS on another drive might be the best way to go. On the other hand, if you have a lot of games that you need to get the most speed from but they aren't data access intensive, then you would probably be better off putting your /usr folder, (that is where your programs are), on a separate partition on the other drive.

As you can see, you have to analyze your system usage to know how to maximize system speed with your partitioning.

Hope this was somewhat helpful.

Fred
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Re: Optimizing partition scheme..

Postby Fred on Mon Jan 05, 2009 8:00 pm

mcastel,

Since I have gone this far I'll give you what I would do, partition wise, if I were a gamer, had lots of fairly small documents, a bunch of movies and other multimedia, large picture files, a general data file containing lots of fairly small files, and lets say projects, like genealogy files which tend to be big. Let's throw in a XP virtual machine, just for fun. :-)

sda
sda1 - Pri - swap - 1/2 of 1.5 to 2X RAM w/ R+s < 4 Gig
sda2 - Pri - ext3 - / - 10-12 Gig.
sda3 - extended
sda5 - log - ext3 - Vbox for XP - 20-40 Gig??
sda6 - log - ext3 - Data - 20-30 Gig??
sda7 - log - ext3 - Documents - 20-30 Gig??
unallocated - the rest

sdb
sdb1 - Pri - swap - 1/2 of 1.5 to 2X RAM w/ R+s < 4 Gig
sdb2 - Pri - /usr/local - 10-20 Gig?? (games)
sdb3 - extended
sdb5 - log - ext3 - Multimedia - 40-60 Gig??
sdb6 - log - ext3 - Pictures - 20-40 Gig??
sdb7 - log - ext3 - Projects - 20-40 Gig??
unallocated - the rest

Note that there are two swap partitions. When the swap space is divided between two drives it speeds up swap considerably. This wouldn't be necessary if you have lots of RAM because you wouldn't ordinarily be accessing swap anyway. With 3 Gig of RAM, one swap partition of say 500MB would be all that would ever be needed.

This is just an example. You would need to adjust it to your needs but I think it demonstrates what I am talking about. You could mount the partitions with data in them anywhere you liked. I put them in my home directory for easy access. Keep in mind there are other things you can do to speed up the install but this only addresses it from a drive/partition point of view.

EDIT: If you move all your data out of the install into dedicated partitions, which I recommend doing for a variety of reasons, you don't really need a separate /home partition.

Fred
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