[sclug] Newbie, partitioning 120Gb HDD - recommendations?

Dickon Hood sclug at splurge.fluff.org
Mon Jan 17 19:54:50 UTC 2005

On Mon, Jan 17, 2005 at 19:32:13 +0000, Keith Edmunds wrote:
: On Mon, 17 Jan 2005 11:34:36 -0000 (GMT)
: "David Newcomb" <david.newcomb at bigsoft.co.uk> wrote:

: > Swap size should be 2 or 3 times the size of phyical memory.

: This is a myth. Swap size should be such that the total memory you ever
: need is less than physical memory plus swap space. What the above advice
: translates to is: if you have 1Gb of memory then you need 2-3 Gb of swap
: space. If you have a memory module go bad and reduce the RAM to 512Mb, then
: you only need 1-1.5Gb swap.

Well, yes and no.  It's always been little more than a guideline.  Stick a
reasonably-sized swap partition and don't worry too much about it.

: When the "2 x RAM" advice first appeared, memory was extortionately
: expensive. My advice, if you want to get the "right" amount of swap space,
: is to start with either 512Mb or 1Gb of swap space, depending upon your
: available disk space, and monitor its usage. Then tune it accordingly.

Personally, I tend to set aside a GB or two for swap simply because
partitions smaller than that are a bit of a waste of time.  The rest I
stick as /, possibly with a couple of hundred MB for a /boot on older

TBH, if you've hit swap in any great amount, you need more memory.  End of
discussion, really: disc is several orders of magnitude slower than
memory, so performance drops through the floor.  You therefore need to
install more memory if you hit swap more than trivially.

I also agree with someone at sun.com (I forget who; it's quite irritating)
about disc partitioning: don't bother.  One big / slice is easier to
manage, and isn't much of a problem if you're careful.

We run all our infrastructure (500+ machines) like this.

Dickon Hood

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