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RAMBOOT with continuous rsync synchronization

Posted 07-20-2017 at 11:55 AM by IsaacKuo

RAMBOOT is an initrd hack that loads the entire OS partition in RAM, making it run like an extremely fast SSD, at the expense of perhaps 1.5+GB of RAM.

Previously I described RAMBOOT using a compressed OS tarball. This is good for boot time, but it takes time to create a new tarball. This new How-To takes a different approach - simply copying an entire directory tree using piped tar commands (cp won't work because of the limited initrd environment). This increases boot time, but allows...
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Old

NFS-RAMBOOT - How-To for Debian 9 Stretch

Posted 06-30-2017 at 05:09 PM by IsaacKuo

NFS-RAMBOOT adapts my RAMBOOT hack to NFS root (PXE or not). On boot, it extracts an OS tarball from an nfs share into local RAM (recommended 3+GB of RAM). The result is like a very fast SSD.

Why do this? Compared to RAMBOOT, loading (and saving) the OS tarball over gigabit ethernet can be faster than a local hard drive or USB drive, if the file server has an SSD or a faster hard drive (compare 3.5" drives to 2.5" laptop drives, for example). Also, having the OS tarballs...
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Old

tmpfs nfs swapfile - use one computer's RAM as SWAP for another computer

Posted 10-13-2016 at 10:51 AM by IsaacKuo
Updated 10-13-2016 at 02:11 PM by IsaacKuo

Previously, I described how to use one computer's RAM as an SSD (OS drive) for another computer. Here, I describe how to use one computer's RAM as SWAP for another computer. Bear in mind that even a RAM disk over gigabit ethernet isn't going to be as fast as a local SSD, but it's still faster and much more responsive than a local spinning hard drive.

This technique of using another computer's RAM as SWAP is a great way to augment RAMboot, as described here:

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...-jessie-37165/...
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Old

Diskless PXE netboot How-To for Debian 8 Jessie

Posted 09-23-2016 at 03:15 PM by IsaacKuo
Updated 09-23-2016 at 03:53 PM by IsaacKuo

There are plenty of other diskless how-to sites out there, but I decided to post this one so it would fit in with my other similarly themed blog posts. Also, most other how-to's are a bit more complicated. This one is a simplistic setup for just one client workstation. You'd have to modify things in one way or another to handle multiple clients.

You can combine this How-To with my How-To for serving up tmpfs nfsroot on the server side. This could be useful if you want to make use...
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Old

tmpfs NFSroot - use one computer's RAM as an SSD for another computer

Posted 09-22-2016 at 04:48 PM by IsaacKuo
Updated 09-23-2016 at 08:44 PM by IsaacKuo

In a previous blog post, I described how to share one computer's SSD to host another computer's OS. With a gigabit ethernet connection, the result is almost as good as a local SSD in real life desktop performance.

But what if you don't have any SSD? You can still do it, if one of your computers has at least 2GB of RAM! The nfs server in this case creates a tmpfs ramdisk and copies the OS from a hard drive copy to the ramdisk. We then use rsync when we want to sync back changes to...
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