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kox444 01-18-2013 07:10 PM

ext4 journaling and speed
I think my HDD is really slow. It's 6 years old though. I recently bought a new hardware and boot time didn't increased at all in Debian Wheezy. It takes 20+ seconds to get from bootloader to login screen. I went from amd sempron 1.6Ghz to quad core phenom 3.4Ghz. I heard there's an option to disable journaling in ext4. Is it safe and does it increase performance? Is there anything else I can do to speed up this old bastard?

jefro 01-18-2013 07:30 PM

Did you just swap the drive or do a clean install?

I haven't seen any speed tests but I suspect that a slight increase in boot speed may be possible with ext2. Check on that to be sure. Part of the issue can't be fixed. The bios and power up will still consume some time. The second part is how services are being started.

This is still good stuff.

Kind of some risky stuff here.

Some systems might boot faster from hibernate also.

BoraxMan 01-18-2013 09:32 PM

It will improve write performance slightly, but make very little difference, if any, to read performance. You might shave a little time off your boot time, but it would be barely noticeable.

20+ seconds isn't too bad. systemd is a replacement for the old init scripts, which can increase boot time a bit, but there are a whole slew of other problems and it might be difficult to install.

Other options are to disable unused services, and look at using hdparm to tweak your hard drive. I've found with older drives this can help quite a bit.

Lastly, make sure you are using noatime, or relatime mount options in /etc/fstab. This stops Linux from updating the access time for every file read, though it may be your system is already not doing this.

But don't disable the journal, and 20 seconds or so boot time isn't too slow.

kox444 01-19-2013 08:23 AM

I disabled a few of services. Added noatime (I think application loading time might decreased a little bit thanks to that). Also used this Debian hack from the first article.
I measured full time it takes to load desktop environment (starting from bootloader) and it is 52seconds! The first text part lasts 20 seconds, but the part where I have a cursor and black screen lasts horribly long. There's nothing I can do about it other than changing desktop environment or new hdd or rather ssd. I'm using autologin of course. The Bootchart app doesn't seem to log things at all.
How to use this hdparm? Is there a gui for this?
I may push Wheezy partition to the top but I don't know if it is worth it. My HDD is 110GB and before Wheezy stands 8GB partition that I used for my main OS on old hardware.
Edit: I was wrong. There's over 50GB of partitions before Wheezy. I thought it is second partition, but it is 6th partition. Moving it to the top should optimize speeds a little.
Edit2: I gained about 5 seconds of boot time.

jefro 01-20-2013 10:31 PM

Is this a new clean install?

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