[Gllug] performance difference between a swap partition vs a swap file.>>>>>

Nix nix at esperi.org.uk
Thu Dec 3 23:51:38 UTC 2009

On 2 Dec 2009, Avi Greenbury outgrape:
> Swap partitions were substantially better than swap files on older
> hardware, where the hard drives were more transparent about exactly
> what was where on the platters. especially as regards whether the
> 'first' partition on a disk is really the first one, and whether it's
> contiguous.

Do hard drives really lie to that degree? Obviously they conceal their
physical geometry from you somewhat (e.g. zone locations and so on,
although you can determine it easily to some degree with zcav or a
similar program), but on every drive I've ever seen that isn't on its
last legs (so is making only minor use of sector sparing), the
lower-numbered (faster) sectors are on the outside of the disk, running
contiguously to the higher-numbered ones on the inside. Some vendors
provide systems with a large hunk of space sealed off in a
host-protected area, often with a Windows restore image in it, but
drives from drive manufacturers never come like that and you can turn
off the HPA in Linux easily anyway.
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