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Old 04-15-2018, 12:34 PM   #1
haertig
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What Linux-only filesystem to choose for a microSD card?


What filesystem to use on microSD card (in a card reader) for Linux file storage?

I've always just used VFAT on thumbdrives and microSD cards for compatibility with more different OS'es. For this one I'm setting up, it will just be used by Linux, so I'm checking if something would be better than VFAT. Will mostly be used to store multi-Gb encrypted file containers (TrueCrypt type stuff) that contain files that are written once, read occasionally, never updated. Maybe a few occasional non-encrypted files that are written, maybe updated a few times, read a few times, then deleted (basic thumbdrive type of stuff)

SanDisk Ultra 64Gb HC10 XC1 microSD card.

What filesystem would you use?
 
Old 04-15-2018, 02:31 PM   #2
ugjka
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F2FS
 
Old 04-15-2018, 03:17 PM   #3
rokytnji
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I've used ext2 on mine . If it/files gets corrupted with a dirty unmount. It is easy enough to fix in gparted on my linux laptop.

Edit: I will explain a little better on why I do this this way.

I just replaced the micro sd card on my phone. Because continuous read write cycles probably killed my 64 gig Sandisk Ultra.

Journaling file systems seem to kill these type of cards. Ext2 is not a journaling file system. It <ext2> kept my crappy phison ssd drives on my old eeepc's from dying so I could sell them when I moved on.

I never ran ext3 or ext4 on those phison ssd drives. Just ext2. I did the same on puppy installs on sd cards for the same reason.

Last edited by rokytnji; 04-15-2018 at 03:26 PM.
 
Old 04-16-2018, 09:16 AM   #4
dave@burn-it.co.uk
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ExFAT was specifically designed for the likes of SD and USB media so that the number of writes to the media is minimised.
 
Old 04-16-2018, 10:09 AM   #5
Timothy Miller
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dave@burn-it.co.uk View Post
ExFAT was specifically designed for the likes of SD and USB media so that the number of writes to the media is minimised.
While I'm not the biggest fan of the implementation of exfat within linux (it works fine, I'm just not a fan of it), this is a very good reason for using the file system.
 
Old 04-16-2018, 01:14 PM   #6
jefro
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I'd not venture far from Ext4 myself.
 
Old 04-16-2018, 01:23 PM   #7
haertig
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Thanks for all the thought provoking replies. I tend to get set in my ways sometimes, comfortable with what I know, and not making the effort to see if some other way might be better. Hence all my VFAT formatted thumbdrives. Yeah, they work fine under VFAT, and changing to a different FS will probably only be a minor improvement in the grand scheme of things.

But it's good to ask, investigate, and learn so that the world does not pass me by. Thanks!
 
Old 04-16-2018, 01:43 PM   #8
fatmac
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I normally just use ext4 too, but I remove the reserved space.
mkfs.ext4 -m 0
 
Old 04-16-2018, 02:40 PM   #9
273
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dave@burn-it.co.uk View Post
ExFAT was specifically designed for the likes of SD and USB media so that the number of writes to the media is minimised.
However, exfat is a Microsoft owned patent and patent fees may apply at any time.
You do not own your data if stored in the format.
 
Old 04-16-2018, 02:53 PM   #10
dave@burn-it.co.uk
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And how many other things in life are covered by patents and could be charged at any time that you don't worry about.
There is such a thing as taking things to a ridiculous extreme and you seem to be approaching that.
FAT32 is patented by MS as well by the way, or had you forgotten that??.
 
Old 04-16-2018, 05:45 PM   #11
syg00
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I see no reason to use an encumbered filesystem unless it will be used in a constrained environment - say Windows or my PVR. Having a natural aversion to log-structured filesystems I use ext4. If I was concerned about journal traffic, and in this case it seems a non-issue, I'd use ext4 without a journal. That way you get the benefits of the current code base.

Each to their own.
 
Old 04-17-2018, 04:49 PM   #12
jefro
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" and changing to a different FS will probably only be a minor improvement"

Here you have the question of what improvement do you want? Speed, file size, directory size, name sizes, tools..........

Last edited by jefro; 04-17-2018 at 08:40 PM.
 
Old 04-17-2018, 06:49 PM   #13
haertig
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I wasn't looking for any specific improvement. I was just asking to see if there was anything better than VFAT (with the implied question, "why is it better?")

Seeing as how this is an external microSD card that does not contain critical stuff, and is rarely used, I am not concerned about performance. Longevity, I guess I am concerned about that. But again, being rarely used, the card will probably outlast me before it croaks.

It's good to learn new things, see other peoples perspectives, etc. Just to keep my brain from getting stale. Someone might point out an improvement in a specific filesystem that I was not familiar with. And at that time I might say, "yeah, I want that". But it appears that there are almost as many different opinions on which filesystem to use as there are filesystems. Hence, for my generic non-specific use (except for the encryted containers) it probably doesn't matter what file system I choose. Which is the outcome that I predicted, but you never know until you ask and learn. Thanks for all the feedback and opinions!
 
Old 04-17-2018, 08:41 PM   #14
jefro
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It was a good question I thought.
 
  


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