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Old 08-10-2005, 01:38 PM   #1
glenn69
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Question Why would I put /home on it's own partition?


When I have installed various Linux distros in the past, sometime I am given the option of placing /home in root or on it's own partition.

What are the reasons for one over the other?

Also, if I place it on it's own partition, will that /home directory be accessible to other distros on other partitions? In other words would I have one /home partition that all 3 Linux distors would use?

Thanks
 
Old 08-10-2005, 01:51 PM   #2
tuxdev
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There is one very important reason to do this. If you reinstall linux in the future, all of your preferences (as opposed to configurations) are saved. The system configureation is not saved, but it is usually better to reconfigure everything or save specific config files manually.
Also, your distros can share that one /home and you will have the same files independent of the distro, but that can lead to your confusion as well as the distro's.
 
Old 08-10-2005, 01:54 PM   #3
rose_bud4201
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You would typically have a /home partition for each distro that you use, although there isn't anything stopping you from mounting an existing partition as /home, so you could do it that way. Programs which install into your home directory, though, could get a bit confused. But the partition would certainly be visible to each OS.

The benefits to having /home on a separate partition (or separate hard drive) are namely that if for any reason you reinstall your OS (drive crashed, partition became corrupted, upgrade, etc) your data is safely on a separate partition and won't be lost.

It's basically the reason for having anything on a separate partition or drive - safety.
 
Old 08-10-2005, 01:56 PM   #4
aysiu
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Re: Why would I put /home on it's own partition?

Quote:
Originally posted by glenn69
When I have installed various Linux distros in the past, sometime I am given the option of placing /home in root or on it's own partition.

What are the reasons for one over the other?
/home is where you store all your settings and files. Having a separate /home partition makes it easy to try out different Linux distros without having to load your settings and files back in every time. It also means if you upgrade via reinstall, you can have your settings and files unaffected.

Quote:
Also, if I place it on it's own partition, will that /home directory be accessible to other distros on other partitions? In other words would I have one /home partition that all 3 Linux distors would use?
You can do that. It won't happen automatically, but you have to specify which is your /home partition for each time you install a distro.

I wouldn't advise sharing one /home partition among several distros unless they're all using the same desktop environment. When I've shared a /home between KDE and Gnome, it hasn't been pretty. A trash can appears in my Gnome. Gnome apps appear in the KMenu, KDE apps appear in the Gnome menu (and when they appear, they appear with no icon).
 
Old 08-10-2005, 02:20 PM   #5
IsaacKuo
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The main benefit of putting /home in its own partition is that you can wipe out and reinstall your OS and your personal files and most of your personal settings will be intact. This is a rather significant issue for OS's where the only way to reliably upgrade is to do a clean install.

You can also use a shared /home for a multi-boot system, but things can get really complicated really fast if you have more than one user or if the different distros have different ideas of default user and groups.

Personally, I prefer to usually keep /home in the root partition, and to symbolic link from /home/USER/data to a "standard" folder in my large data partition. I prefer to manually copy over configuration files.

One advantage of doing things manually like this is that a lot of linux distros tend to put a ton of "crap" in my home directory. SimplyMepis is an amazing offender! By keeping my main data partition cordoned off from /home, I prevent it from getting littered with a lot of crud just from trying out a different distro.
 
Old 08-10-2005, 08:35 PM   #6
foo_bar_foo
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i thing partitions are about limiting space
/home partition is for the dilbert on your system who will take up the entire hd with his home unless constrained
 
Old 08-10-2005, 08:50 PM   #7
freakyg
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I use the same /home partition between LFS and Slackware........so IT CAN be done..........."BUT" and this is a BIG BUT...........you must use different usernames for each distro so the config files don't get fubar'd..........

example............../home/freakyme <-- LFS
/home/freakyg <--- Slackware

Oh, and my /home is on it's own seperate partition on a 2nd hard disk..........15 gigs so I'll never run out of space.........

Last edited by freakyg; 08-10-2005 at 08:53 PM.
 
Old 08-10-2005, 10:22 PM   #8
Kdr Kane
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Quote:
Originally posted by foo_bar_foo
i thing partitions are about limiting space
/home partition is for the dilbert on your system who will take up the entire hd with his home unless constrained
Close. Separate partitions for /home are mainly for server backups and being able to replace the hard drive with a larger one when all the user space is taken up.

I see absolutely no need for separate partitions for workstations.
 
Old 08-11-2005, 05:03 AM   #9
ilhbutshm
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Aren't servers usually set up with partitions like: /home, /var, /root and /swap. (I think that's all?)

We established that a separate /home partitions is useful when you need to reinstall and you don't want the user files lost or when you just want to move them to a bigger, separate drive.

But what is the purpose of separating /var and /root?
 
Old 08-11-2005, 11:30 AM   #10
tuxdev
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/var has logs and other info about the system. I think it is separate so that if the server crashes and corrupts the partition, you can still read what was going on when it crashed.
/root is /home for the superuser.
 
Old 08-11-2005, 11:50 AM   #11
routers
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I will explain little bit and this is my personal interrest
1) This section is my workstation partition ( FC4)

[rou@ap4 ~]$ df -hT
Filesystem Type --- Size --- Used --- Avail --- Use% ---- Mounted on
/dev/sdb1 ext3 --- 8.1G --- 3.9G --- 3.9G --- 51% ---- /
/dev/sda1 ext3 --- 23M --- 5.0M --- 17M --- 23% ---- /boot
/dev/shm tmpfs --- 316M ----- 0 --- 316M --- 0% ---- /dev/shm
/dev/sda2 ext3 --- 8.2G ---- 2.5G ---- 5.4G --- 32% --- /export
//noc/server smbfs --- 111G --- 87G ---- 24G --- 79% --- /export/mnt/noc

in the workstation i no need /home partition because whatever work i do
its directly located in the /export partition ( sda2 ) but i have /home as folder
at ( sdb1 )

system running /var /usr /etc .. filesystem located in sdb ( 1000k RPM )
which is more faster than sda ( 7200k RPM )

2) This section for my server partition ( Slackware )

rou@noc:~$ df -hT
Filesystem Type --- Size --- Used --- Avail --- Use% --- Mounted on
/dev/sda3 ext2 --- 889M --- 189M --- 656M --- 23% --- /
/dev/hda1 ext2 --- 24G --- 17G --- 6.4G --- 72% --- /home
/dev/hda2 ext2 --- 2.9G ---1.2G --- 1.6G --- 42% --- /usr
/dev/hda3 ext2 --- 1.1G --- 547M --- 463M --- 55% --- /export
/dev/sda1 ext2 --- 23M --- 3.2M --- 19M --- 15% --- /boot
/dev/sda2 ext2 --- 2.6G --- 297M --- 2.2G --- 13% --- /var
/dev/hdb1 ext2 --- 111G --- 81G --- 24G --- 78% --- /nfs

i need /var with diffrent partition because this /var is formated with 1024 inode
which u can see with the command df -ih.
this type of inode is needed when server having high mail traffic in /var/spool.
if normal formated inode size is bigger so cant handle more extra extra mail
once inode full utilize the server will hang , so format it smaller for more inode storage

any comment is welcome

ps: sorry my english
 
  


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