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September 20, 2008 / gus3

The Fastest Filesystem: Update

I’m sure I’m not the first, but I’ve made an interesting discovery about filesystems:

System load affects data path speed.

Yes, I’m good at stating the obvious.

XFS did very well on my desktop system through the summer, but that was on a mostly-idle system. That changed when I re-joined the Folding@Home project. From all appearances, the background work slowed down the attempts XFS made to be intelligent about its disk I/O.

I have now reverted to using ext3 for my root partition. It is not as fast as XFS was on my previously lightly-loaded system, but it does better than XFS on my newly-busy system.

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