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Thread: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

  1. #121
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Calgary, Canada
    Beans
    4,394
    Distro
    Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    Quote Originally Posted by BoomerTPU View Post
    Hi I'm a linux newbie and I've read your guide.
    I'm running Ubuntu 6.10 on an old P3-m 128mb ram machine. My problem is that when I type in the "sudo kate /etc/fstab" I get an error message saying something about the function kate doesn't exist. Do I have to install anything else before following this guide ?

    Thanks for the help!
    If you are using ubuntu (gnome interface), then you will need to the command
    Code:
    gksudo gedit /etc/fstab

  2. #122
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Beans
    2
    Distro
    Xubuntu 7.04 Feisty Fawn

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    Thanks rsambuca!

    But how come my fstab file looks nothing like the one describe in the guide?
    Is it because the guide is written for another version of Ubuntu ?

    Thanks for the help.

  3. #123
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Beans
    1,123

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    Quote Originally Posted by BoomerTPU View Post
    Thanks rsambuca!

    But how come my fstab file looks nothing like the one describe in the guide?
    Is it because the guide is written for another version of Ubuntu ?

    Thanks for the help.
    Are you confused about the UUID= instead of /dev/sda ?
    "I'd rather be hated for what I am, than loved for what I'm not."

  4. #124
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    393

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    I have actually ran into some data corruption from using writeback mode. I was messing with some software and the computer locked. After forcing it to reboot I had a lot of files missing. Very similar to a crash with ext2. I have not had any trouble with the ordered mode.

    Like I said earlier in this thread:

    using ext2, a transfer from hard drive A to hard drive B had a throughput of 50mBs
    using ext3 writeback, a transfer from hard drive A to hard drive B had a throughput of 7-15mBs.

    Same goes for ext3 in data ordered mode. I could not see a speed difference between the 2.

    EXT3 supports external journaling so of course if you want to be 1337, you can always install another hard drive and direct all your partitions to use the other hard drive for journal space. This will give an ext3 partition similar performance to that of ext2. Just search google for "ext3 external journaling"
    MS gonna get ya

  5. #125
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    USA
    Beans
    75
    Distro
    The Feisty Fawn Testing

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    Will this still work for 7.04?

  6. #126
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Beans
    331
    Distro
    Kubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    Will this still work for 7.04?
    The guide is independent of version number yes

  7. #127
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Montreal
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    3
    Distro
    Ubuntu 7.04 Feisty Fawn

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    Using Feisty and it worked perfectly, I didn't have any problems on my PIII 600Mhz, it's much much faster now! It boots faster, programs load faster, it doesn't lag when I scroll down big webpages anymore... Not sure exactly why, but I'm very happy..

    Thanks for the hack!

  8. #128
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Beans
    331
    Distro
    Kubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    Using Feisty and it worked perfectly, I didn't have any problems on my PIII 600Mhz, it's much much faster now! It boots faster, programs load faster, it doesn't lag when I scroll down big webpages anymore... Not sure exactly why, but I'm very happy..

    Thanks for the hack!
    Really happy it did some good for you. For lower spec machines you always need some extra boost with todays apps and this little tweak makes its usage just there. People who already have to much power on there hands doesn't notice anything of course, but strangley enough they are often the ones crying buh the first *hehe*

  9. #129
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Beans
    10

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    I wanted to post three things that could help everyone in this thread.

    First I think the following script is a more accurate way to test your disc speed since it uses file system access instead of direct disc access like HDPARM.
    Code:
    echo "start 50mb write"
    time dd if=/dev/zero of=/var/testfile bs=50000k count=1
    echo "start 50mb read"
    time dd if=/var/testfile of=/dev/null bs=1000k
    echo "size of file in kilobytes"
    ls -k -s testfile | cut -d ' ' -f 1
    rm /var/testfile
    Replace instances of "/var/testfile" with whatever writable partition and random filename you want to test. I didnt use urandom because its not fast enough. If a disk doesnt contain a mountable/writable partition you can at least test read speeds with
    "time dd if=/dev/hdb2 of=/dev/null bs=1000k count=50" (useful for the next hack...)

    2. Although the change of options in the walkthrough did improve my speed slightly I got a MUCH higher imrprovement by running the following command at every boot. Edit to list all your hard drives. These settings are generic to most any OS but check your man page to be sure because on my Tivo the "-M" option controls streaming media mode instead of acoustic settings. To find the best setting for the "-m" option run "hdparm -i /dev/hda /dev/hdb" then look for MaxMultSect and use that number. The "-S" option prevents the drive from spinning down (disabling power management) which also helps extend drive life. The "-a" option controls read ahead and you may be able to set it higher (on some systems -a 1024 is best).
    Code:
    hdparm -a 255 -c 1 -d 1 -k 1 -m 16 -M 254 -S 0 -u 1 /dev/hda /dev/hdb

    Last I don't know if anyone mentioned this but you can test the noatime option without rebooting with
    Code:
    mount -o noatime,remount /
    or
    mount -o atime,remount /
    Last edited by ciper; August 2nd, 2007 at 02:26 AM.

  10. #130
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Mississippi
    Beans
    907
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: HOWTO: Tweak your ext3 filesystem for a performance boost

    First off - @ GoldBuggie: Thank you for this hack. Although I am not running a laptop and my system is somewhat new (old by todays standards though) and pretty snappy, this hack DOES make a difference.

    Second - @ ciper (or anyone else that is in the know): Thanks for the hdparm tip. Just a quick question...

    After reading the man hdparm file, I've discovered the /etc/hdparm.conf file. Instead of having to pass these options after each boot, could you just edit/add your options to the configuration file? Or is there a specific reason this would be a bad idea?

    Thanks for the help... in advance!

    Code:
    ## This is the default configuration for hdparm for Debian.  It is a 
    ## rather simple script, so please follow the following guidelines :)
    ## Any line that begins with a comment is ignored - add as many as you 
    ## like.  Note that an in-line comment is not supported.  If a line 
    ## consists of whitespace only (tabs, spaces, carriage return), it will be
    ## ignored, so you can space control fields as you like.  ANYTHING ELSE
    ## IS PARSED!!  This means that lines with stray characters or lines that 
    ## use non # comment characters will be interpreted by the initscript.  
    ## This has probably minor, but potentially serious, side effects for your 
    ## hard drives, so please follow the guidelines.  Patches to improve 
    ## flexibilty welcome.  Please read /usr/share/doc/hdparm/README.Debian for 
    ## notes about known issues, especially if you have an MD array.
    ##
    ## Note that if the init script causes boot problems, you can pass 'nohdparm' 
    ## on the kernel command line, and the script will not be run.
    ##
    ## Uncommenting the options below will cause them to be added to the DEFAULT
    ## string which is prepended to options listed in the blocks below.
    ##
    ## If an option is listed twice, the second instance replaces the first.
    ##
    ## /sbin/hdparm is not run unless a block of the form:
    ##      DEV {
    ##         option
    ##         option
    ##         ...
    ##      }
    ## exists.  This blocks will cause /sbin/hdparm OPTIONS DEV to be run.
    ## Where OPTIONS is the concatenation of all options previously defined
    ## outside of a block and all options defined with in the block.
    
    # -q be quiet
    quiet 
    # -a sector count for filesystem read-ahead
    #read_ahead_sect = 12
    # -A disable/enable the IDE drive's read-lookahead feature
    #lookahead = on
    # -b bus state
    #bus = on
    # -B apm setting
    #apm = 255
    # -c enable (E)IDE 32-bit I/O support - can be any of 0,1,3
    #io32_support = 1
    # -d disable/enable the "using_dma" flag for this drive
    #dma = off
    # -D enable/disable the on-drive defect management
    #defect_mana = off
    # -E cdrom speed
    #cd_speed = 16
    # -k disable/enable the "keep_settings_over_reset" flag for this drive
    #keep_settings_over_reset = off
    # -K disable/enable the drive's "keep_features_over_reset" flag
    #keep_features_over_reset = on
    # -m sector count for multiple sector I/O
    #mult_sect_io = 32
    # -P maximum sector count for the drive's internal prefetch mechanism
    #prefetch_sect = 12
    # -r read-only flag for device
    #read_only = off
    # -s Turn on/off power on in standby mode
    #poweron_standby = off
    # -S standby (spindown) timeout for the drive
    #spindown_time = 24
    # -u interrupt-unmask flag for the drive
    #interrupt_unmask = on
    # -W Disable/enable the IDE drive's write-caching feature
    #write_cache = off
    # -X IDE transfer mode for newer (E)IDE/ATA2 drives
    #transfer_mode = 34
    # -y force to immediately enter the standby mode
    #standby
    # -Y force to immediately enter the sleep mode
    #sleep
    # -Z Disable the power-saving function of certain Seagate drives
    #disable_seagate
    # -M Set the acoustic management properties of a drive
    #acoustic_management
    # -p Set the chipset PIO mode
    # chipset_pio_mode
    # --security-freeze Freeze the drive's security status
    # security_freeze
    # --security-unlock Unlock the drive's security
    # security_unlock = PWD
    # --security-set-pass Set security password
    # security_pass = password
    # --security-disable Disable drive locking
    # security_disable
    # --user-master Select password to use
    # user-master = u
    # --security-mode Set the security mode
    # security_mode = h
    
    # Root file systems.  Please see README.Debian for details
    # ROOTFS = /dev/hda
    
    ## New note - you can use straight hdparm commands in this config file 
    ## as well - the set up is ugly, but it keeps backwards compatibility
    ## Additionally, it should be noted that any blocks that begin with 
    ## the keyword 'command_line' are not run until after the root filesystem
    ## is mounted.  This is done to avoid running blocks twice.  If you need 
    ## to run hdparm to set parameters for your root disk, please use the 
    ## standard format.
    
    #Samples follow:
    #First three are good for devfs systems, fourth one for systems that do 
    #not use devfs.  The fifth example uses straight hdparm command line
    #syntax.  Any of the blocks that use command line syntax must begin with
    #the keyword 'command_line', and no attempt is made to validate syntax.  
    #It is provided for those more comfortable with hdparm syntax. 
    
    #/dev/discs/disc0/disc {
    #	mult_sect_io = 16
    #	write_cache = off
    #	spindown_time = 240
    #}
    
    #/dev/discs/disc1/disc {
    #	mult_sect_io = 32
    #	spindown_time = 36
    #	write_cache = off
    #}
    
    #/dev/cdroms/cdrom0 {
    #	dma = on		   
    #	interrupt_unmask = on
    #	io32_support = 0
    #}
    
    #/dev/hda {
    #	mult_sect_io = 16
    #	write_cache = off
    #	dma = on
    #}
    
    #command_line {
    #       hdparm -q -m16 -q -W0 -q -d1 /dev/hda
    #}
    Last edited by southernman; August 3rd, 2007 at 07:13 AM. Reason: added /etc/hdparm.conf
    ... in myself i am nothing exactly no thing i am only a mirror in which others see aspects of themselves and attribute the resulting concepts to me but i am also an other to my self

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