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

Alex Butcher lug at assursys.co.uk
Wed Jan 19 10:34:55 UTC 2005

On Wed, 19 Jan 2005, David Newcomb wrote:

> Alex Butcher said:
>> Faster doing _what_ ?
> At the time I was doing unix 'c' developement.
> Editing, compiling, linking and normal day-to-day stuff in a
> development environment.


> The two developers (of which I was one) who used the machine
> both commented that it seemed to run smoother and slighly quicker.
> We did not do benchmark tests, like copying 100MB files around,
> we just used it doing real work for about a week.

I'm absolutely not denying the behaviour you observed (though if no timings
whatsover were made, then other - possibly psychological - issues could be
the cause - e.g. developing boring, frustrating, tricky code during the week
when the multi-partition system was used, and more enjoyable code for the
other week :)

If there was a technical cause, then based on what you've told us so far, I
would expect that it would be a combination of the following (in order of
decreasing expected effect):

a) using ccache, but having the cache directory on a seperate partition to
the build directory, thereby preventing ccache from using hard links to
'copy' object files to the cache.

b) putting the build and/or /tmp partition(s) at the slow end of the disc.

[ not sure about the order of those two - maybe the other way 'round ]

c) faulty/misconfigured hardware (using ATA? was it fully tweaked - DMA, IRQ
unmapping, 32-bit IO?)

d) putting /tmp on a seperate partition (gcc uses /tmp during compilation)

If you had made an effort to control these variables (e.g. by creating large
dummy files in the large single partition, preventing the fast end of the
disc being used for the build/tmp directories), I'd be much less skeptical
of your conclusions.

> Regards,
> David

Best Regards,
Alex Butcher      Brainbench MVP for Internet Security: www.brainbench.com
Bristol, UK                      Need reliable and secure network systems?
PGP/GnuPG ID:0x271fd950                         <http://www.assursys.com/>

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