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Thread: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

  1. #1

    Default Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    I had used btrs & snapper on opensuse 42 (forget rev) and it used to lock up. Are people opting for other file formats? Presently I am using ext4 on / and XFS on /home. This is on a dual boot notebook using ssd if that matters.

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    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    I doubt any significant bug remains in the BTRFS filesystem itself. There likely remain shortcomings in the wisdom embodied in its configuration and maintenance tools because of its relative youth. These can only come from experience, which has by now been accumulating for a substantial period.

    More important is probably how much space BTRFS has to work with. How big is the SSD in that notebook? How much space do you plan to give openSUSE for its root filesystem? Are you going to keep /home on a separate filesystem? If you plan to give root ample space for snapshotting as well as software, there should remain no significant reason to avoid it.
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    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    Quote Originally Posted by gariac View Post
    I had used btrs & snapper on opensuse 42 (forget rev) and it used to lock up. Are people opting for other file formats? Presently I am using ext4 on / and XFS on /home. This is on a dual boot notebook using ssd if that matters.
    btrfs is great, but requires sound user experience. With Leap 15.1 being rock stable there is no big advantage in having snapshots. My machine has lots of ext4 only:

    Code:
    erlangen:~ # lsblk -f
    NAME        FSTYPE  LABEL                       UUID                                 FSAVAIL FSUSE% MOUNTPOINT
    sda                                                                                                 
    ├─sda1      ext4                                fad3604b-5a61-4653-8c14-518d850400ba                
    ├─sda2      ext4    Tumbleweed-HDD              3760cc8d-f468-4654-855b-afcd31071075                
    └─sda4      ext4    Home-HDD                    f5177cae-4082-44ed-9471-b99030f06866      2T    42% /home-HDD
    sdb                                                                                                 
    ├─sdb1      vfat                                4A24-B10D                                           
    ├─sdb2      ext4    ArchLinux                   690b51d7-7034-4585-b362-615f8056be45   22.1G    20% /ArchLinux
    ├─sdb3      ext4    Tumbleweed-SSD              083dd95e-4073-43b1-a213-ad3ed8dd9a33   10.4G    60% /Tumbleweed-SSD
    ├─sdb4      ext4    Home-SSD                    f4c5463f-f43d-420a-a0ea-4456cfbc54fa  114.3G    63% /home-SSD
    └─sdb5      btrfs                               d2a744da-8a53-4321-aada-81f97e7f8d63                
    sdc         iso9660 openSUSE_Leap_15.1_KDE_Live 2019-08-01-16-22-40-00                              
    ├─sdc1      iso9660 openSUSE_Leap_15.1_KDE_Live 2019-08-01-16-22-40-00                     0   100% /run/media/karl/openSUSE_Leap_15.1_KDE_Live
    ├─sdc2      vfat    BOOT                        080B-F3FC                                           
    └─sdc3      ext4    cow                         cec96381-7c8a-4fe1-b809-b5b5c21f645b   54.2G     1% /run/media/karl/cow
    nvme0n1                                                                                             
    ├─nvme0n1p1 ext4    Fedora                      047d4d83-a9a7-482e-8d15-a1c855a637ea                
    ├─nvme0n1p2 ext4    Tumbleweed                  8b190950-c141-4351-9198-7a9592b4fb34   10.1G    63% /
    ├─nvme0n1p3 ext4    Home                        704621ef-9b45-4e96-ba7f-1becd3924f08  184.2G    54% /home
    └─nvme0n1p4 vfat                                6DEC-64F9                                84M    16% /boot/efi
    erlangen:~ #
    For some good reason even the live version of Leap 15.1 uses ext4.
    AMD Athlon 4850e (2009), openSUSE 13.1, KDE 4, Intel i3-4130 (2014), i7-6700K (2016), i5-8250U (2018), openSUSE Tumbleweed, KDE Plasma 5

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    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    If you select the default installation, you no longer get a separate /home partition; it is a btrfs sub-volume on the root partition. Whether that is important is up to you.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    Quote Originally Posted by john_hudson View Post
    If you select the default installation, you no longer get a separate /home partition; it is a btrfs sub-volume on the root partition. Whether that is important is up to you.
    Now this is interesting. Doing an upgrade, the lack of /home wasn't an issue since it already existed. Thanks for the heads up. I'm at a loss why this was changed as I always thought the separate /home was a good idea. Worse comes to worse, you can save the personal data even if you can't boot.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    Quote Originally Posted by mrmazda View Post
    I doubt any significant bug remains in the BTRFS filesystem itself. There likely remain shortcomings in the wisdom embodied in its configuration and maintenance tools because of its relative youth. These can only come from experience, which has by now been accumulating for a substantial period.

    More important is probably how much space BTRFS has to work with. How big is the SSD in that notebook? How much space do you plan to give openSUSE for its root filesystem? Are you going to keep /home on a separate filesystem? If you plan to give root ample space for snapshotting as well as software, there should remain no significant reason to avoid it.
    The new SSD will be a 1TB. I found this
    https://doc.opensuse.org/documentati...rtitioner.html
    Looks like good advice if you want to keep the snapshots small. However I'm thinking of just going ext4 as the other poster indicated. That said, I think I will make /usr/local a separate partition. Once I had to reload the OS and lost what I had compiled. I run my own mail server so the keeping the mail directories off the main partition shouldn't be needed. Still that link has a lot of things worth considering.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    Quote Originally Posted by karlmistelberger View Post
    btrfs is great, but requires sound user experience. With Leap 15.1 being rock stable there is no big advantage in having snapshots. My machine has lots of ext4 only:

    Code:
    erlangen:~ # lsblk -f
    NAME        FSTYPE  LABEL                       UUID                                 FSAVAIL FSUSE% MOUNTPOINT
    sda                                                                                                 
    ├─sda1      ext4                                fad3604b-5a61-4653-8c14-518d850400ba                
    ├─sda2      ext4    Tumbleweed-HDD              3760cc8d-f468-4654-855b-afcd31071075                
    └─sda4      ext4    Home-HDD                    f5177cae-4082-44ed-9471-b99030f06866      2T    42% /home-HDD
    sdb                                                                                                 
    ├─sdb1      vfat                                4A24-B10D                                           
    ├─sdb2      ext4    ArchLinux                   690b51d7-7034-4585-b362-615f8056be45   22.1G    20% /ArchLinux
    ├─sdb3      ext4    Tumbleweed-SSD              083dd95e-4073-43b1-a213-ad3ed8dd9a33   10.4G    60% /Tumbleweed-SSD
    ├─sdb4      ext4    Home-SSD                    f4c5463f-f43d-420a-a0ea-4456cfbc54fa  114.3G    63% /home-SSD
    └─sdb5      btrfs                               d2a744da-8a53-4321-aada-81f97e7f8d63                
    sdc         iso9660 openSUSE_Leap_15.1_KDE_Live 2019-08-01-16-22-40-00                              
    ├─sdc1      iso9660 openSUSE_Leap_15.1_KDE_Live 2019-08-01-16-22-40-00                     0   100% /run/media/karl/openSUSE_Leap_15.1_KDE_Live
    ├─sdc2      vfat    BOOT                        080B-F3FC                                           
    └─sdc3      ext4    cow                         cec96381-7c8a-4fe1-b809-b5b5c21f645b   54.2G     1% /run/media/karl/cow
    nvme0n1                                                                                             
    ├─nvme0n1p1 ext4    Fedora                      047d4d83-a9a7-482e-8d15-a1c855a637ea                
    ├─nvme0n1p2 ext4    Tumbleweed                  8b190950-c141-4351-9198-7a9592b4fb34   10.1G    63% /
    ├─nvme0n1p3 ext4    Home                        704621ef-9b45-4e96-ba7f-1becd3924f08  184.2G    54% /home
    └─nvme0n1p4 vfat                                6DEC-64F9                                84M    16% /boot/efi
    erlangen:~ #
    For some good reason even the live version of Leap 15.1 uses ext4.

    Is it possible to overthink this? Of course not. That is why we run linux.

    Doing some searches, the differences between Ext4 and XFS are interesting. I found this on Redhat:
    https://access.redhat.com/articles/3129891

    So XFS is a bit CPU intensive. Maybe that is why / should be ext4 and /home be xfs. This notebook uses m.2 ssd, so the I/O speed should not be an issue. (I agonized over two or three bits per cell. I decided to go with two.)

    Having been bit once on btrs, I will go your route and avoid the snapshots.

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    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    Quote Originally Posted by gariac View Post
    Is it possible to overthink this? Of course not. That is why we run linux.

    Doing some searches, the differences between Ext4 and XFS are interesting. I found this on Redhat:
    https://access.redhat.com/articles/3129891
    More on xfs vs ext4 from: https://blogs.fau.de/ftp/2015/06/15/...m-xfs-to-ext4/, mirroring http://download.opensuse.org/:

    "Apparently, there was a bug in newer XFS versions. So I took the problem to the XFS mailing list. The responses were surprisingly quick and competent: Apparently there are situations where XFS will need large amounts of unfragmented kernel memory, and when such memory is not available, it will essentially block until there is. Which might be “when hell freezes over”. Until then there is no I/O to that filesystem anymore. The suggested workaround of increasing vm.min_free_kbytes and similar settings so the kernel would be more likely to have enough memory immediately available for XFS did not work out, hangs were still happening at an unacceptable rate – a FTP server that is unavailble for 2 times 10 minutes a day isn’t exactly my idea of a reliable service for the public. The XFS developers seemed to have some ideas on how to “do better”, but it would not be simple. I did not want to wait for them to implement something – and even after they did I would still have to run a handpatched kernel all the time, which I was trying to avoid. So a switch of filesystems was in order. That was probably a good idea, because according to a recent post on LKML the situation is still unchanged and no fix has been implemented yet"

    So XFS is a bit CPU intensive. Maybe that is why / should be ext4 and /home be xfs. This notebook uses m.2 ssd, so the I/O speed should not be an issue. (I agonized over two or three bits per cell. I decided to go with two.)
    I got excellent performance with m.2 SSD/ext4, see: https://forums.opensuse.org/showthre...ptop-15-da0xxx and i7-6700k vs. i5-8520U: http://jalbum.net/forum/thread.jspa?...54599&tstart=0
    AMD Athlon 4850e (2009), openSUSE 13.1, KDE 4, Intel i3-4130 (2014), i7-6700K (2016), i5-8250U (2018), openSUSE Tumbleweed, KDE Plasma 5

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    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    Hi
    There is always i/o schedulers to consider as well... I've not had issues with btrfs/xfs (I don't run snapper/snapshots), but do use mq-deadline for my SSD's and bfq for rotating rust.

    Bottom line, use whatever filesystem you feel comfortable with...
    Cheers Malcolm °¿° SUSE Knowledge Partner (Linux Counter #276890)
    SUSE SLE, openSUSE Leap/Tumbleweed (x86_64) | GNOME DE
    If you find this post helpful and are logged into the web interface,
    please show your appreciation and click on the star below... Thanks!

  10. #10

    Default Re: Preparing to do a new Leap 15.1 installation. Is btrfs / snapper still a little buggy?

    IMHO BTRFS is for a servers with an UPS, atomic updates, snapshots, etc.
    BTRFS will eat battery of your notebook.
    BTRFS can damage data in a drive with a power loss.

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