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Thread: Which installation should be good?

  1. #1

    Default Which installation should be good?

    Hello,

    I have recently downloaded openSUSE 13.1 KDE again (because earlier aria2c issue was there) and now wish to install KDE again (at first). I have two doubts to be asked:

    [1]. Should I go with LVM? Because many say they do go with it and there must be some advantages of doing so.....

    Also, if I go with LVM, partitions can be made automatically or I necessarily need to allocate space for each partition?

    [2]. There is an option of encrypting the whole system during installation, should be selected? If I select this, everything I would have in my PC would be encrypted, so that must be perfectly secured. However, sometimes recovery becomes typical, is it true? Or encryption can be done after the installation?

    Thanks.
    Linux 3.7.10-1.16-desktop openSUSE 12.3 (Dartmouth) (i586) KDE 4.10.5 "release 1" Intel(R) Pentium(R) CPU E5200 @ 2.50GHz

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    Only use LVM when you see a clear case for it and are prepared to learn to understand it.

    So you must decide what you want (glue-ing disks/partitions together, RAID of some kind, both). Then you could ask for advice (LVM, MDRAID, ....).
    Henk van Velden

  3. #3

    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    Well, I am ready to prepare for learning it because I heard its many advantages. Since I get time not on regular basis, but still I would try to manage to look at it. Also, I don't know about RAID and why to use it. I simply have a 250 GB hard disk with 2 GB RAM and nothing more in my PC.
    Linux 3.7.10-1.16-desktop openSUSE 12.3 (Dartmouth) (i586) KDE 4.10.5 "release 1" Intel(R) Pentium(R) CPU E5200 @ 2.50GHz

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    I do not know which advanrtages you heard of. May be they are only advantages for some situations and not for your's. It is hard to decide when you do not know yourself what is attractive.

    In any case, having only one disk, I do not see much advantage in using LVM. Also using DMRAID with for e.g. RAID 1 of you data gives only limited advantage because when your disk is gone, it is gone, RAID1 or not.

    Examples from my usage:

    One (old system) has three small disks. I made one Logical Volume out of them and then created one large file system on it. Thus this file system spreads over all three disks (used for data, not the system). It has the advantage that it offers one big flexible amount of storage instead of three small sized file systems where you allways have the problem that one is full and the other two have space left.

    On another system, I have two disks off a different size. I wanted some security on the data and decided to go for RAID1 (mirroring). I could have gone for LVM again, but this time I used the "build in" Linux DM features. I partioned the larger disk in two partitions, the smaller one for the system and the larger one, of the same size as the other disk. Then I created a RAID1 for that parition and the one partition on the other disk. Now the data is protected for a failing disk. The system must however be reinstalled if the larger disk fails.

    But all these are solutions for a case one has. One does not use these solutions simply because they are available and someone says that they are nice. My opinion of course.
    Henk van Velden

  5. #5

    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    Thanks for this clarification. Basically, as conclusion, I should use LVM if I have more than one hard disks and then it shows its advantages. Ok.

    During installation, there is just an option to be ticked (or not, depends) using LVM.... I just thought it could be used on the single hard disk also because of the flexibility....For example, if one plans to install another distro in the near future, its easier to shrink the space using YaST, if LVM were used. But since I am not aware of dual/tripple booting system and have to keep only one distro..., I am sure, I should not go with LVM then. This just came in mind because the option was depicted there!
    Linux 3.7.10-1.16-desktop openSUSE 12.3 (Dartmouth) (i586) KDE 4.10.5 "release 1" Intel(R) Pentium(R) CPU E5200 @ 2.50GHz

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    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    There could be reasons to use LVM on the one and only disk of a system. Maybe when someone comes with a special requirement that then somebody would say: "Hey, you can realize that using LVM in such and such way". But at the moment I can not produce such a case out of my head.

    Changing the sizes of Logical Volumes is IMHO not easier then repartitioning. In both cases the difficult part is the data on it. Can the file system on that container easily and in a safe manner be shrinken and/or enlarged. And even when that is implemented in a tool, that will only work when the start address of the container stays on the same place (you can only shrink/enlarge at the end of a file system). Every other reorganisation requires saving of the data before the repartitioning/LV-recreation and restoring it after.
    Henk van Velden

  7. #7

    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    So, finally it would be best for me to not go with LVM.
    Linux 3.7.10-1.16-desktop openSUSE 12.3 (Dartmouth) (i586) KDE 4.10.5 "release 1" Intel(R) Pentium(R) CPU E5200 @ 2.50GHz

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    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    Quote Originally Posted by panchparmeshthi View Post
    So, finally it would be best for me to not go with LVM.
    My personal advice would be not to use it. In your case it would only make things more complicated.
    Henk van Velden

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    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    Quote Originally Posted by hcvv View Post
    There could be reasons to use LVM on the one and only disk of a system. Maybe when someone comes with a special requirement that then somebody would say: "Hey, you can realize that using LVM in such and such way". But at the moment I can not produce such a case out of my head.
    I use LVM on a single disk. I decided for it, because I didn't know where my space would go. I set up a more "fragmented" partitioning than usual: A separate boot partition outside the LVM (to prepare for full system encryption - it was never applied), a /srv partition, a /tmp partition and so on - the goal was to have a system where users could misbehave while I could be sure that no data could fill up disks and crash the system. Then I left 25% of the disk unallocated. That space can easily be added to any of the partitions under the LVM hat. This has worked fine. But to tell the truth, I never have had any use for the spare disk storage. It also seems that LVM takes a performance hit, but I have not done any specific timings of it... But see below. THAT's where I made use of LVM...

    Quote Originally Posted by hcvv View Post
    Changing the sizes of Logical Volumes is IMHO not easier then repartitioning. In both cases the difficult part is the data on it. Can the file system on that container easily and in a safe manner be shrinken and/or enlarged. And even when that is implemented in a tool, that will only work when the start address of the container stays on the same place (you can only shrink/enlarge at the end of a file system). Every other reorganisation requires saving of the data before the repartitioning/LV-recreation and restoring it after.
    Originally, I only enabled LVM to learn it. I got the hang of it (I think), then left it alone for a while (since 12.1 arrived). A few weeks ago (it was inside a VM), i needed to shrink the VM. Since this was LVM, I could establish another disk of the size I wanted, then transfer all data (including root, system files and all!) to the new disk, shrink the old disk and transfer the system back. Everything was done while being online! How neat is that! The only downtime needed was to reinstall Grub, as I had a separate boot-partition outside the LVM. I used caf4926's excellent article on reinstalling Grub to do that. Shrinking the system's disk took the better part of a day, but still had a cost of less than 30 minutes downtime!

    ----

    My goal when enabling LVM, was simply to learn it, as a way to learn to set up a robust system. The "online shrinking" was just a fluke, and not strictly necessary in my environment. But it demonstrates the power.

    My experience, though, is if you get problems, things like LVM and encryption often is the difference between being able to remedy it or not. So I generally don't implement such things unless there is a specific need for it. So there's many ways to see a robust system. One "robustness model" may exclude the other. It all depends on your needs. I have no difficulty in following hcvv's advice here.

    dayfinger

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Which installation should be good?

    I agreeTrying to understand what LVM is, one needs a sort of test environment and start reading man pages and get the feel of it. I do not have the idea that the OP here is willing to invest in that. That is not wrong at all, because a normal set-up will function fully to his expectations. When LVM would have many advantages above using partitions directly, I am sure that these forums would be full of advice to go for it. Which is not the case. It is a fine thing when one digs into the area of computer room systems (often called servers) with improved up-times, disk error rcovery and the like.

    And yes, your case of having space left that where you can then cut out a new partition that you can then add to an existing LV (and then increase the file system) can be an advantage when you are not sure which of your file systems may need more space in the future.
    Henk van Velden

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