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Data Storage SuSE Linux

OpenSUSE May Be First Major Distro To Adopt Btrfs By Default 104

An anonymous reader writes "The openSUSE Linux distribution looks like it may be the first major Linux distribution to ship the Btrfs file-system by default. The openSUSE 13.1 release is due out in November and is still using EXT4 by default, but after that the developers are looking at having openSUSE using Btrfs by default on new installations. The Btrfs features to be enabled would be the ones the developers feel are data-safe."
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OpenSUSE May Be First Major Distro To Adopt Btrfs By Default

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  • by Strawser ( 22927 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @11:37AM (#44894013) Homepage

    Not really that interesting that they're "considering" it. Linux produces an endless litany of RSNs that never come to fruition. I've basically become numb to predictions about the future of the system. Everyone's been planning to do everything RSN for a decade and a half.

    • by icebike ( 68054 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @01:56PM (#44895389)

      On the other hand, OpenSuse, and SuSE before them, have a track record of adopting newer file systems as the default.
      They also demote some filesystems as the default, (while still making them available for the user to set as the default.).
      (I still use reiserfs on some systems, it may not be massively scale-able, but its pretty bullet proof).

      But more to the point, I can't really understand your point about RSNs, since Btrfs is already available in OpenSuse and several other Distros for the last several releases.

      Further, on Opensuse at least, the user can set any of the choices as the default for any new partitions, or as the system default at install time. The available choices include Btrfs, XFS and Reiserfs, and three versions of Ext.

      Its not that something is promised and not delivered. Its more akin to having the default web browser set to Chrome or Firefox.

      There is no broken promises here. Simply a failure to understand that the choice has been there for years.

      • by Strawser ( 22927 )

        Fair enough points. It's just that, over the years, we've seen so many predictions of what's going to happen next, and something completely different does. 20?? will be the year of the linux desktop; there will never be a 3.x kernel; Linux will never be an enterprise quality system; RedHat is going to die (back when people were calling Red Hat the 'Microsoft of Linux' a decade or so ago); etc. We once thought Linux would never be found in enterprise data centers, but I remember the first time we got a li

  • by Anonymous Coward

    They should enable all the worst options by default, that way people will learn to learn what they're doing. It's not like installing an OS is something you just do casually without any thought.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by MightyYar ( 622222 )

      What's the name of your distribution? I'll be avoiding that one!

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Well, they tried to get Darwin, but that name was taken.

        So they just call it NietzschOS

    • by nine-times ( 778537 ) <> on Thursday September 19, 2013 @11:43AM (#44894083) Homepage
      Desktop/laptop operating systems should be able to be installed casually without any thought.
      • By extension, "productivity" tools like Office and gcc should be able to be used casually without any thought.

        Oh wait, that's not true.

        • Can't tell if you're trolling, but yes, an Office suite should be able to be used casually with very little thought. You should be able to drop into a word processor, type something up, print it, and send the file to someone else-- all without having to think much about what you're doing. There can be more extensive features that require thought, but the basics should be pretty obvious.

          But gcc? How is gcc lumped in with Office as 'productivity' software? Most people should never need to know what a com

  • by Beardydog ( 716221 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @11:38AM (#44894029)
    Should I be calling it "Butterface"? Because I am calling it "Butterface."
  • exciting. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 19, 2013 @11:46AM (#44894113)

    I've gotten 4 machines running "native zfs for linux" using the stable ppa for ubuntu server 12.04.

    It has been a truly mixed bag. Like a bag full of with crashed machines. At least the data has survived each time.

    I am genuinely excited at the idea of BTRFs becoming production ready.

    • Re:exciting. (Score:5, Informative)

      by bill_mcgonigle ( 4333 ) * on Thursday September 19, 2013 @12:23PM (#44894449) Homepage Journal

      Like a bag full of with crashed machines

      You probably ran out of memory. No, seriously, don't try it on a machine with less than 3GB of RAM. It's not optimized for that use case yet (version 0.6.2 is current - 1.0 will be 'ready').

      • I had a few crashes even with 8GB until bumping to 16GB. Since then my zfs server runs flawlessly (and fast). So imho 10GB or higher should be considered minimum. And 2x8GB ECC modules aren't that expensive any more so ECC always.

        • 2x8GB of DDR2 ECC is still expensive when compared to DDR3. The price of DDR2, once you want to get up into the 16-64GB per machine range is enough that you should probably consider scrapping the motherboard & CPU and buying something that uses DDR3.
          • I actually was referring to DDR3 but after checking, I was completely wrong about price. Late last year Kingston was pretty much the only manufacturer that (sporadically) had 2x8GB ECC on the market. So I snagged it around $170. Thought that it would have dropped significantly in price by now; it hasn't budged. But now there are more suppliers.


      • Can't speak for the Linux version of ZFS, but I run ZFS for FreeBSD in a VM (specifically, FreeNAS 8.0->8.2). My understanding is that after Solaris, the FreeBSD version of ZFS is the most mature. I watched the memory profile for the VM. It would start at about 512 MB, then gradually fill up all the RAM I gave it, then "purge" itself and drop down to 512 MB and repeat.

        Upon researching, it looks like the only feature that's really memory-intensive is deduplication. That keeps checksums for every fi
    • I am genuinely excited at the idea of BTRFs becoming production ready.

      Don't hold your breath. I've been watching the btrfs development and it's simply not there yet. A good clue for when it will be considered "production ready" would be when RHEL advertises it as something other then a technical preview []. And it's still labeled as experimental in Fedora 19 [] (released July 2013), even after it was slated to become the default in Fedora 16 (which didn't happen).

      So, maybe it makes it in time to be includ
      • Eh, I find RedHat way too conservative. RHEL is still shipping Ruby 1.8, for example, and only has 1.9 in beta, even though 1.8 was EOL 6 months ago and 2.0 is stable.

  • there are too many bugs in btrfs for it to be installed in production: []

    especially this one, which has yet to be resolved: []

    which is a major useability issue. yes i made the mistake of installing btrfs on a live production system.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Why on earth would you put something on a production system that isn't even default on the most bleeding edge of systems?

      • by TCM ( 130219 )

        Because that's the current generation of armchair admins for you. Either that, or his "live production system" is really just his basement porn server.

    • by Bill Dimm ( 463823 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @12:08PM (#44894293) Homepage

      According to the summary, OpenSUSE 13.1 is not the one that will default to btrfs, so I don't know why you are saying not to install 13.1.

      The openSUSE 13.1 release is due out in November and is still using EXT4 by default, but after that the developers are looking at having openSUSE using Btrfs by default on new installations.

    • by icebike ( 68054 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @02:19PM (#44895627)

      there are too many bugs in btrfs for it to be installed in production: []

      Well, hold on a second here...

      Your list shows 196 bugs with only 36 still un-fixed.
      Yet EXT4 shows 214 bugs with still 34 still un-fixed.

      Yet Ext4 seems to by adopted by world plus dog.

    • by cmurf ( 2833651 )
      Especially a bug that the bug reporter has failed to provide developer quested information in the past 10 days, and was also using an older (in the context of btrfs anything older than 3.11 is old) kernel when the problem occurred? Especially uninteresting in my opinion.
  • No surprise (Score:5, Informative)

    by willoughby ( 1367773 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @12:03PM (#44894257)

    I remember when SuSE was one of the only distros, perhaps the only one, which used reiserfs as the default filesystem. No, there's no punchline. This was when you could buy it in a box (including the little chamelon pin) off the shelf at CompUSA. SuSE has always had a fascination with new filesystems.

  • Is there a comparison somewhere? Reiser, EXT4, at least 3 others I've forgotten. This produces a lot of incompatibility, for how much actual performance?

    What do we need, a fastest one and a fastest with X one?
    • by inhuman_4 ( 1294516 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @01:03PM (#44894883)

      Phoronix Benchmarks [] will give you an idea of the perfomance differences. Btrfs is usually middle of the pack, so nothing to write home about. The big deal with btrfs is the new features like COW, snapshots, filesystem compression, etc. If you are looking for more performance btrfs is not going to impress. If you are looking for better RAID perfomance, snapshots, compression, etc. Then btrfs is going to be huge for linux. It is probably the closest linux will get to having a ZFS clone.

      • Yes. I use it in conjunction with LXC and making clones is instant thanks to the BTRFS snapshots.

      • I question the use case, The hardware was defiantly desktop grade and highly memory constrained. 4GB is tinny even for a desktop and a cheap server has at least 8x that. A single SSD again only in a desktop. There are some significant differences in tuning between filesystems, Ext4 was specifically put in ordered mode not writeback for example, when etx4 own docs say write back is faster and the same as xfs etc. Relatime was in use all over the place vs noatime. ZFS shows no mention of ashift=12 being u

        • by petteyg359 ( 1847514 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @04:00PM (#44896511) Homepage

          I question the use case, The hardware was defiantly desktop grade

          Was the hardware told that it absolutely must stop being desktop grade? I see no other reason for it to express defiance.

        • You do realize that there are hundreds of variables involved here right? Every FS in that benchmarks has lots of tweaks that could make things faster/slower. Plus the differences in kernel version, differences in benchmarks versions, hardware differences, etc. You can't be all things to all of the FS. For example turning on compression for btrfs produces huge performance improvements, but that isn't used either.

          The test lists all of the gritty details I can think of. They may not be optimal, but it bette

    • by perbu ( 624267 )

      What incompatibility? Btrfs is fully POSIX compliant.

      And I'd be curious to hear what's so fantastic about NTFS.

      • Filesystem-level transparent compression, transparent encryption, extended attributes, alternate data streams, integrity levels, multiple ACLs, at least some level of snapshotting, etc. Plus a bunch of stuff that all decent FSes should have, like journaling (not as good as newer FSes, though), symlinks, hardlinks, support for really large (though not ZFS-scale large) volumes, support for really long file and path names, support for many weird characters (prepend \\?\ to a Windows path to use them, as that b

  • I hope it turns out better than my experiment with btrfs in early 2012. [] I can't wait until it's stable and I can use it safely.

  • Btrfs has not finalized its disk format yet.

    Until the designers are sure of the final disk layout, I do not think it is wise to adopt it for production use.


  • by ultrasawblade ( 2105922 ) on Thursday September 19, 2013 @07:53PM (#44898209)

    I've been using it awhile, haven't had any problems. Seems to be faster even if it makes my `ps aux` look scary with all those kernel processes.

    Hmm ... that volume didn't have that much free space just a few minutes ago ...

Karl's version of Parkinson's Law: Work expands to exceed the time alloted it.