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    XFS on Debian
    Submitted by Anonymous on Friday, March 08, 2002 – 17:50
    Following the work of Zoltan Kraus other people are trying to encourage the use of the XFS filesystem on Debian. Angelo Ovidi created a new project on Sourceforge called XFDeb and made a rescue disk based on kernel 2.4.14 and XFS 1.0.2

    Now he is trying to unify his work with that of Ionut Georgescu wh ocreated a complete Debian GNU/Linux Installer with SGI XFS support.
    (http://www.physik.tu-cottbus.de/~george/)

    The main goal for Angelo is finalized to boot disks, supporting a dialog system to choose which filesystem to use in a nice way.

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: ionutg
    Date: Wednesday, 2002/03/13 – 00:20
    Hi,

    just a remark on my work (http://www.physik.tu-cottbus.de/~george/):

    It’s not only an XFS capable installer, it also has ReiserFS, RAID and LVM stuff in it. The next step is to create a root disk with all sort of *.fsck and *repair stuff. It is sometimes needed.

    And yes, dbootstrap already has all the XFS and ReiserFS support one needs.

    Ionut

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Sunday, 2002/03/10 – 19:11
    • Remember that you need egcs-1.1.2 to compile XFS kernels, and I don’t think Debian have packaged this compiler. (DMAPI seems to get horribly confused if you use new compilers.)
    • Remember also that 2.5 kernels have dropped support for egcs-1.1.2 so the merge is going to be messy
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: eckes
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 01:59
    I dont have a problem compiling the XFS Kernel on my Debian Box:

    gcc version 2.95.4 (Debian prerelease)

    it is the -9 package.

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 01:22
    i must say, i haven’t had any problems compiling with gcc 2.95.4 from debian either.

    there WERE issues a while back, iirc, but those were mainly with redhat’s poor choice of compiler iirc.

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 11:03
    Typical Debian advocate behaviour. How much testing of this kernel have you tried? Have you tried the DMAPI stuff?
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 20:42
    I thought that this is a debian advocate site. What’s so shocking about advocating an os on that advocacy site? You are showing typical advocacy of non-advocacy for others. Huh?
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Tuesday, 2002/03/12 – 09:28
    Saying “it’s stable for me” by only proving you’ve booted the thing is going to *hurt* Debian in the long run. Show me good evidence that your kernel survives under stress
    (try heavy local and NFS loads with quotas while doing xfsdump) and I’ll shut up. Saying “look, I’ve compiled it, therefore it works” is just puerile. And that’s what I’ve come to expect from much of the Debian community 🙁
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Sunday, 2002/03/10 – 20:59
    XFS is perfectly happy with my compiler:

    development:~# gcc -v
    Reading specs from /usr/lib/gcc-lib/i386-linux/2.95.4/specs
    gcc version 2.95.4 20011002 (Debian prerelease)

    After building a kernel, apt-get install boot-floppies and mkisofs, do a bit of editing in ~/boot-floppies/scripts, and you have your personal XFS-capable Debian installation CD.

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: eckes
    Date: Sunday, 2002/03/10 – 16:13
    I’m using XFS on LVM on my Home System to get some experiences with it. So far I’m very pleased with the performance and stability. I was upgrading an existing system, so I had no need for Boot Floppies (actually my small / partition is still ext2 without LVM).

    One of the major problems with XFS is the development process. The CVS is hard to track. SGI engeneers seems to work with an internal Source Managemnt system, therefore the labels and comments in the CVS are not that rich.

    I think the main reason for Linux to ignore the XFS work is, that it used to be much interrelated with the Kernel Debug Stuff. As I understand it, this is no longer true, and I realy hope, XFS will show up in 2.5. In my experience and what I hear from co-workers who use it in very large environments, it is much more stable compared to ReiserFS.

    BTW: lvm from 2.4.17 is useable, as long as you do not overflow your snapshots. Personally I love the freeze feature of XFS, but beware, it is not a good idea to freeze /var 🙂

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 02:17
    The kernel debugger (kdb) is in no way required or related to xfs. It’s in cvs because it can be a very useful tool for debugging xfs problems, and there’s even an xfs debug module that adds many xfs-specific kdb commands. Also, the kdb maintainer Keith Owens works for sgi.

    For the past several months, we’ve offered patches against each major 2.4 kernel, almost always available within a week of the kernel release. These patches are also split up so you can exclude kdb if you want to. It’s true that these are cvs snapshots, packaging and testing a “full release” is time consuming, so we do it only at various points in time.

    We do use a different source control system inside of sgi, and export it to cvs. You don’t miss much though – per-file comments are preserved for example. We don’t often tag the cvs tree, though, it’s a bit of a pain and doesn’t offer _that_ much advantage over just checking out by date.

    If you guys have other questions or concerns about xfs, feel free to join the mailing list!

    -Eric

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 14:15
    Mainline debian boot-floppies have supported installing on XFS for many monthes. Just give them a XFS capable kernel and add /sbin/mkfs.xfs to the root.bin image and dbootstrap will automagically offer a choice between ext2 and XFS (along with ext3 and reiserfs if the kernel supports one/both and the equivilent mkfs is available). Absolutly no source code changes are required at all.
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: alghul
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 06:13
    a few months ago I switched my /usr /usr/local partitions to XFS and have been nothing but happy with it.

    As far as limited kernel support goes, it helps a lot that I no longer feel the need to upgrade to every new kernel. if the new one doesn’t have a feature that I absolutely need, why would I move up only one minor kernel and leave my perfectly stable one behind?

    It would be nice to have an option to install Debian right from the beginning with XFS as the fs, so you wouldn’t have to work so hard to convert some filesystems to XFS.

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    Subject: Reiserfs (Re: XFS on Debian)
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 08:20
    Why does no one consider using reiserfs. It is faster than ext3 and as stable as all the journaling filesystems.
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    Subject: Reiserfs (Re: XFS on Debian)
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 01:32
    Because it’s got shit failure handling
    (get a bad sector on the disk, and watch it kernel panic. XFS happily sends out a syslog message, and then unmounts the filesystem after writing every bit of data that it can possibly write out, which is the expected behaviour. (oh. and don’t give me that “it’s not the fs’s job to handle errors” crap. it’s not the fs’s job to make the kernel panic. EVER.)

    also, it’s got an incomplete toolset.
    where’s reiserfsdump?
    where’s a fast repair tool? (hell. where’s one that WORKS?)
    where’s the defragger?
    XFS has all of these, and they’re all of professional quality.

    that’s why i’ll NEVER use reiserfs again. it’s not mature now, and it won’t be mature any time soon.

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    Subject: Reiserfs (Re: XFS on Debian)
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Wednesday, 2002/03/13 – 13:33
    Of course, if you use it for a squid cache and temp filesystem, who really cares!!!!

    If it corrupts, reformat and start again. Nothing lost! No big deal.

    What do you gain? Speed! For these types of filesystems, you can get a big speed advantage.

    Also, considering your obvious hate for RFS, it should be noted that RFS has been used in large installations for a very long time now. Like it or not, it IS reliable and given the right opperating needs, it can be very fast.

    Like it or not, it has its place!

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    Subject: Reiserfs (Re: XFS on Debian)
    Author: eckes
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 02:04
    And it is very funny to see, that Hans is sending of one of his programmers to fix a bug every week. At least those bugs are fixed quickly, but it does not look to me, that all the major bugs are fixed in ReiserFS, yet.

    Ext3 has some undenyable advantages, like data journalling and easy up/downgrade. I still think it is pretty unfair to deny JFS and XFS the same chances like Reiser got (for no good reasons), by beeing included in the main line kernels.

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    Subject: Reiserfs (Re: XFS on Debian)
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 16:08
    I’ve used RieserFS for a very long time now. I’ve found it to be very reliable and have never had any corruption. Having said that, RieserFS is not the fastest FS around, however, I find it works exceptionally well for as a temp and squid cache filesystem.

    I found that it does not generally work well (speed wise) for a FS where you need rather large files. In other words, probably not he best FS to use on you MP3 collection.

    On a side note, I’ll mention that a couple of devs on the PostgresSQL project ran some perf benchmarks on ext2 and ext3 and found ext3 to be significantly slower. In fact, it was so much slower that it spurred interest to see how well some of the other journalling file systems will perform. Results are not in yet.

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    Subject: Reiserfs (Re: XFS on Debian)
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 14:08
    because it corrupts itself to hell on a regular basis.
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    Subject: No 160G drive support?
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Friday, 2002/03/08 – 20:03
    A bummer since XFS’ greatest quality is when dealing with large files and many large files lead to large HDDs…
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Friday, 2002/03/08 – 18:19
    I’ve been using XFS on my main machine for about 8 months with great results, and I’ve been following XFS on Linux for a lot longer than that. The problem is that it is becoming more and more apparent to me that XFS is never going to “cut the fat” and make it into the kernel.

    I’ve tried out ext3 on two of my other machines, and , even though the performance seems a little lower than that of XFS, I’ve been considering moving my XFS partitions over to ext3.

    Having boot disks is very nice, and takes the headache out of putting together a new system with XFS, but this still doesn’t help kernel upgrading, and a lot of people really don’t like having to patch their kernel source.

    I really hope XFS makes it, but I’m very pessimistic about that…

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: hildeb
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 09:09
    The performace of ext3 is slower, because in the default setting ext3’s journalling
    is more conservative than XFS’s!
    ext3 uses data=ordered per default, this menas the metadata are written after the disk says it wrote the userdata to disk.
    XFS on the other hand uses a journalling mode like data=writeback, which only journals metadata.

    Thus, ext3 is slower than XFS unless “tuned”.

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    Subject: On why XFS is actually faster than ext3
    Author: gwolf
    Date: Monday, 2002/03/11 – 18:23
    Not only that. Even if you put ext3 in writeback mode, it will still be slower than XFS. XFS was designed from the bottom as a journaling FS. The journal is in a specific part of the disk, not mixed around with regular data files. The /.journal file in ext3 must go through a regular ext2 file creation process… Which is suboptimal.

    Ext3 comes from ext2. Ext2 is a great filesystem for the hobbyist OS that Linux was seven years ago – And is still a pretty decent (stable, robust) filesystem. Ext3 adds some pretty interesting capabilities. But XFS was designed to be a very fast, very robust FS for enterprise usage – For supercomputers, for high-throughput video processing stations, etc. XFS does not carry its predecessor (EFS) over its shoulders, with all the good and bad things this implies.

    Anyway, ext3 *is* a great FS. Probably, once Woody comes out (if ever 😉 ), I will use ext3 on my servers. Or, if by then either XFS or JFS has been imported into the main kernel…

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Friday, 2002/03/08 – 22:07
    Patch your kernel? Assuming you can get a patch for your kernel is more like it. SGI has been very selective in the kernels that they offer patches for. In fact, best I can tell, the XFS CVS tree jumped from supporting XFS on 2.4.14 to the 2.5.x series. Unless someone has some additional information, best I can tell, 2.4.14 is the most recent kernel you’re going to get XFS on.
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 18:44
    My girlfriend downloaded a whole kernel source prepatched for xfs: 2.4.18 so you might want to check your sources. 🙂 It works great.
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 01:05
    uh. i’m using XFS on 2.4.18
    up until a few days ago, i was using it on 2.4.17 as well

    XFS DO provide patches for releases of the standard kernel.

    ftp://oss.sgi.com/projects/xfs/downloads/patches has the patches i use. keep in mind that they’re CVS snapshots, against an XFS-cvs/stable kernel merge.

    the real work is done in the head tree, which is what’s probably following 2.5.x (although they should be doing both 2.4.x and 2.5.x)

    it’s only the stable XFS releases (currently at 1.0.2 or so) that isn’t being kept up to date. that’s why 2.4.14 is the latest supported kernel for the stable XFS release.

    ashridah

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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 04:33
    The head was until very recently going against the 2.4.x series of kernels. It is now 2.5.x based.
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 01:03
    Where are you getting your facts from? The XFS patches follow shortly after each kernel release. The 2.4.18 patch is available now.
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 04:27
    My information came directly from the developers at SGI via an email.
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: Anonymous
    Date: Saturday, 2002/03/09 – 18:41
    I can back him up. I’m running (from the CVS tree) the 2.4.17 XFS kernel. Before 2.5, the XFS guys would follow every single 2.4-pre kernel within hours of its release. Now, they follow every 2.4 full release and 2.5 pre releases.
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: thorgod
    Date: Friday, 2002/03/08 – 19:42
    Actually, I recently read on the Linux-Kernel mailing list that Marcelo plans on having xfs in the main kernel as soon as he sees it stable in -ac. So, your pessimism might soon be wronged 🙂 Or so, lets hope, I really like XFS!
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    Subject: Re: XFS on Debian
    Author: thorgod
    Date: Friday, 2002/03/08 – 19:58
    Damn, to check up on things after the fact. Well xfs isn’t in -ac but JFS is…sorry about that. Let’s hope Cox can implement it.
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