choosing a file system

John Madden jmadden at
Fri Jan 2 08:50:22 EST 2009

> Now from our experience, I can tell you that ext3 really does poorly on
> this workload compared to reiserfs. We had two exact same servers, one all
> reiserfs and one all ext3. The ext3 one started out ok, but over the course
> of a few weeks/months, it started getting worse and worse and was
> eventually being completely crushed by IO load. The machine running
> reiserfs had no problems at all even though it had more users on it as well
> and was growing at the same rate as the other machine.

Now see, I've had almost exactly the opposite experience.  Reiserfs seemed to 
start out well and work consistently until the filesystem reached a certain 
size (around 160GB, ~30m files) at which point backing it up would start to 
take too long and at around 180GB would take nearly a week.  This forced us 
to move to ext3 and it doesn't seem to be degrade that way.  We did, however, 
also move from a single partition to 8 of them, so that obviously has some 
effect as well.


John Madden
Sr. UNIX Systems Engineer
Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana
jmadden at

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