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Thread: Partition formatting and fstab options

  1. #1
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    Default Partition formatting and fstab options

    I'm reading some documentation on btrfs and not sure if I should choose it. Once, some time back, I recall advise for most users not to choose it. Is it the recommended choice, now? And the documentation https://activedoc.opensuse.org/book/...ced-disk-setup I was reading says it suggests a separate boot partition. What happens if you don't choose a separate one? And I have not a clue what subvolumes are for.

    Now if I choose to use ext4, there are the fstab options which I never know what to do with such as, Access Control Lists and Extended User Attributes. I click on help and it tells me:

    Access Control Lists (ACL): Enable access control lists on the file system.
    Extended User Attributes: Allow extended user attributes on the file system.

    Ok, I got that already from the options. Reminds me of when I was being sarcastic while I was writing user documentation for a windows program.

    I understand it has something to do with adding access control so you can select additional users to access a file. But which one of these does it? Is it stored with the file, with the operating system, or with the partition? In other words, if I my data partition has it, would creating a new partition and operating system preserve them? Does copying the file to another partition preserve them? If I use a non-system way of copying them?

    Which one, Access Control Lists or Extended User Attributes does what? Why would you want to select either one, why would you not want to select either one?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Partition formatting and fstab options

    Take the defaults for ACL and Extended User Attributes: You only need fool with these things if you have special needs and if you don't know you have special needs you don't have them. As a rle you do need ACL since that is what controls access and you want that control.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Access_control_list

    Extended attributes add addition control bits and is recommended and may be needed for the base system. You may not need itf on say a pure data filesystem

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extended_file_attributes

    Note I just looked up those terms in Google

    As to BTRFS, it is ok to use but you do need to allow additional space for the Snapper feature that takes periodic snapshots of the FS. EXT4 is fine and works well also and you can get by with less disk space. recommended min for BTRFS root partition is 40 gig where as ext4 is 20-30 gig

    openSUSE now defaults to BTRFS for root and XFS for home. Again if you don't have special needs you take the defaults they are just fine. But if you want to save a bit of space use EXT4 for root and XFS or EXT4. There are small differences in performance between the different FS but as a human you would never notice. I mean how fast can you type???

    But her is more then you ever wanted to know about file systems

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compar...f_file_systems
    http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/33552...ld-you-choose/
    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...ux317_fs&num=2

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Partition formatting and fstab options

    Quote Originally Posted by dt30 View Post
    I was reading says it suggests a separate boot partition. What happens if you don't choose a separate one?
    Everything works. Actually, with separate boot partition some features of current openSUSE are not available, like booting from previous snapshot.

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    Default Re: Partition formatting and fstab options

    Quote Originally Posted by gogalthorp View Post
    Take the defaults for ACL and Extended User Attributes: You only need fool with these things if you have special needs and if you don't know you have special needs you don't have them. As a rle you do need ACL since that is what controls access and you want that control.
    Well that's comforting as that's what I've been doing is ignoring the stuff I don't know about. Sometimes, that doesn't always work out. I didn't think to search outside for the terms. I was hoping to make a suggestion to the documentation, but not sure I understand enough to make one. Other than a help message saying just take the defaults.

    Yes, more than I ever knew about the file systems. Now more confused as ever. I suppose take the defaults. But the XFS can't be shrunk. Ext4 can have data loss. But then looking at ext3, it has problems too. So maybe take the defaults and don't worry. Why not btrfs for home? I find it interesting when first going with Linux that I was searching for a defrag utility and I read that it wasn't a problem for ext3. Now I read that actually it can be under certain circumstances.

    From what I'm understanding, that if my home data is ext3, and I don't have enough space to duplicate it, I shouldn't really worry about trying to convert it to ext4, xfs, or btrfs?

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    Default Re: Partition formatting and fstab options

    Quote Originally Posted by dt30 View Post
    From what I'm understanding, that if my home data is ext3, and I don't have enough space to duplicate it, I shouldn't really worry about trying to convert it to ext4, xfs, or btrfs?
    That's right.

    Even if you do have space to duplicate it, I would suggest not trying to convert. As the saying goes, "if it ain't broke, then don't fix it."
    openSUSE Leap 15.1; KDE Plasma 5;

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Partition formatting and fstab options

    That's the problem with choice you have to decide

    And I agree with nrickert if it ain’t broke don't fix it. In any case if you change partitions sizes it is highly recommended you backup first because you never know what will go wrong. So it really is not that big a thing to backup resize and restore the data.

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