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Old 05-28-2004, 06:11 PM   #1
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RedHat=EXT3 Choice=reiserfs,jfs,xfs

It's Friday, I've finished work and I've had all the micromanagment I can take this week so I apologies if this turns into a rant.

Ok, the company I work for some years back decided to migrate away from Micro$oft to linux. First they started with non reveniew generators SMTP gateways, the intranet etc that kind of stuff and slowly but surely as time went they started using it for more significant projects.

The obviouse choice at the time seemed redhat, so we started with redhat 6.2 and as time went progressed from about 6 linux servers to now a grand total of 48 all running redhat (A variety of RH8 & 9). It's cheap, it's stable and gives us good performance, which is not bad for a company that if given a choice of an opensource product that's free or a product that's identical but costs a few hundred they'd normally want to pay the few hundred.

Anyway one thing has always anoyed me about RedHat is the fact that they really don't seem too keen on reiserfs, at all.

Redhat 8 and 9 all run with an old version Lilo which doesn't support reiserfs, Ok it's lilo, get over it and use GRUB, but personnally I like to have the option especially when it comes to something like booting. No biggy though, boot with grub and update lilo.

However, we're now looking at opteron's running RedHat ES 3.0 and talking about using EXT3 because there is no boot option at install time unlike redhat 7,8 & 9 that allows you to run reiserfs at the off.

Now my experience of ext3 and reiserfs has been this.

We had 4 servers 2 x Dell PowerEdge 1550's 512mb ram 2x 1.0 Ghz processors running reiserfs running side by side with 2 x Dell PowerEdge 1650's 512mb ram 2x 1.13 Ghz processors running ext3.
These servers were all performing the exact same task side by side yet comparing the logs from apache the 2 servers running reiserfs performed twice as many tasks as the servers running ext3.

Now with RedHat ES we seemed to be forced down the route of ext3.

I was wondering how anyone else felt about this, has it made anyone decide to change to suse does anyone think that redhat will change there stance, or has anyone decided to go with either xfs or jfs (am I right in thinking jfs is also not supported by redhat es the same as reiser).

I'm just trying to get an idea of my options as I don't want to go down the redhat enterprise route simply because we've always used non-enterprise redhat products in the past when it may not be the best product. I'd rather have SUSE on reiserfs than redhat on ext3.

Also worth a look
Old 05-28-2004, 08:24 PM   #2
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Location: Sparta, NC USA
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Filesystem support is in the kernel, so it's easy enough to add. I'm pretty sure it has rieserfs support upon install, as I am running FC1 on a reiserfs partition on this box. I don't know about the install and xfs as I haven't tried it. I haven't experimented any with xfs yet, but it is supposed to be good at handling large files and my machine is mostly a music box with tons of wav, ogg, and mp3 files. Of course, I have seen rpms built the modules too.

What I would do is boot with a linux floppy or live CD and pre-partition and format the drives as you want.

Then you can choose the expert install, choose disk druid for partitioning and force it to install as you want. It will gripe a lot about your choices, but you know the system better than any script that RH wants to use can. Just don't use the install partitioning tools and give them no permission to format the stuff it wants to. At least, that's how I solved the problem of getting my system to use reiserfs with FC1.

# Freeware tools for partitioning/resizing hard drive partitions:
Any Linux Live CD usually have fdisk, cfdisk and other tools available
Ranish Partition Manager
# Understanding Linux Filesystem layout:
Directory Navigation Help File
Filesystems, Directories, and Devices Help File
Proper Filesystem Layout
Advanced filesystem implementor's guide (requires registration)

Last edited by fancypiper; 05-28-2004 at 08:34 PM.
Old 05-29-2004, 06:39 AM   #3
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Thanks fancypiper,

I'm just getting pissed off with redhat's attitude to reiserfs.
normally it's a straght forward "linux reiserfs" at the boot prompt of the install with redhat 7 8 and 9, but we're getting some Sun V20z's (MMMMmmmmmmmm....... nice.) very soon and we'll be using RedHat ES 3.0 and cos we're paying for it and want support from redhat certain people don't want us to be in a position where we have a problem but redhat won't support us cos were running reiserfs.

Plus after reading this

I'm a little like, "let's hold on a minute and not jump in with this just because we need enterprise software and we've always used redhat."
Old 05-29-2004, 08:01 PM   #4
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For the record, Fedora is completely different from WS/ES/AS Red Hat. What works in Fedora will not necessarily work in commercial Red Hat and Fedora is a much more open "testing" OS where you can tinker with things that are very difficult to access under commercial Red Hat.
Old 06-15-2004, 11:24 AM   #5
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Registered: Apr 2004
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reiserfs and fedora

I don't know if this is the same problem, but I just installed Fedora on a reiserfs partition and root can't be mounted during startup.

I am just expermenting with different Linux systems on the same harddisk. I used the (Mandrake 10 64bit beta ) to resize a partion on the harddisk.

(The only way I know to resize a partition was to restart the Mandrake installation and reset the system after Diskdrake. Just launching diskdrake under Mandrake gave an error and I didn't find in the Slackware or Fedora installation how to do it.)

I formatted the partition as reiserfs, sounded original, with the Mandrake installation diskdrake.

Fedora, I believe it is the 64bit version, was installed on the partition. I didn't install Lilo, this was not offered, or Grub. I was affraid that I would have problems with the other installations if the MBR was changed.

The partion mounts fine under the two other Linux distributions. I tried to configer the Mandrake Lilo to launch Fedora, with and without the initrd parameter, I understand now it is a ramdisk, and it looks to work. until I get a message like "Kernel panic : Can't mount root."

Reading this, it looks the problem is the filesystem and I think I will experiment with ext3.
Old 06-15-2004, 04:23 PM   #6
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In the meanwhile I found how to mount reiserfs with Fedora.
Putting "reiserfs" as an option to the kernel in lilo.conf and apparantly the initrd parameter is red at "compile"time of lilo, so the path should be the one on wich the fedora rootdisk is mounted under Mandrake.
Old 06-16-2004, 03:58 AM   #7
Registered: Nov 2002
Location: England
Distribution: Ubuntu 9.04
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I've used a variety of filesystem types on Mandrake (ext3, reiserfs, jfs) and been happy with all of them; but that's not for high-end use to be fair.

I've been using JFS on IBM AIX for 10 years (the Linux port of jfs is more closely related to JFS2 on AIX, which has been around for about 4 years). I've always found JFS/JFS2 to be very stable on AIX - it is the only filesystem option for AIX so pretty much all the high end AIX servers out there are running it all the time.
Old 07-09-2004, 02:09 PM   #8
Registered: Jun 2004
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My personal opinion, as an RHELAS and SLES user is that you want to use ext3 if you use Red Hat and you want to reiserfs if you use SUSE. SUSE has a vested interest in reiserfs and they keep their code patched properly. Red Hat obviously has a vested interest in ext2/3....

In the same manner, Red Hat desktops should run gnome and SUSE desktops should run KDE. You pretty much have to go with the distribution's strengths.

I will say that I trust ext3 and jfs/xfs (though xfs to a lesser extent) on SUSE... but I only trust ext3 on my Red Hat servers.


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