Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you? - Mandriva

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Thread: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

  1. Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    Hello all. Here is my system info and plan for partitioning and backup.
    How does it look to you?

    Partition & Backup Plan

    * Clean install - Mandriva 2008

    * Celeron 2Ghz / 1GB RAM / 60GB & 80GB Internal HDs / 200GB External HD

    * Home Desktop - Light office work / Music / Photos / Videos / Cable &
    Wireless Web Surfing / No LAN, Servers or Gaming

    * HD #1 - 60GB Internal
    hda1 - / - 1GB
    hda2 - /boot - 500MB
    hda3 - /usr - 10GB
    hda4 - /home - 45GB
    hda5 - /var - 1GB
    hda6 - /tmp

    * HD #2 - 80GB Internal
    hdb1 - /swap - 2GB
    hdb2 - /storage - 78GB

    * HD #3 - 200GB USB External
    sda1 - /system backup - 135GB
    sda2 - /music - 65GB

    * Backup hda1, hda2, hda3, hda4 & hdb2 to sda1 - /system backup

    Any suggestions to improve this layout would be much appreciated.

    * Am I backing up the right stuff?

    * Do I need to backup anything under hda1 - / ?

    * Will putting /swap on the 2nd HD REALLY improve performance?

    Many thanks for any and all ideas.

    alBERT

  2. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On 04 Mar 2008 23:36:22 GMT, Al wrote:
    > Hello all. Here is my system info and plan for partitioning and backup.
    > How does it look to you?


    My stupid opinion:
    Too much work, waste of space.
    I would never want to upgrade my "production" copy with the next
    release/upgrade until I knew I had it working like I wanted it.

    I install everything in a ~10 gig partition.
    I have several ~10 gig partitions used to test next release/upates and
    other linux distributions. See

    $ grep title /boot/grub/menu.lst
    title linux
    title 2008_1
    title 2008_0
    title 2007_1
    title fc7
    title kubuntu
    title ubuntu
    title hotbu
    title fc8
    title pclinuxos
    title 2008_1_64
    title XP_Home
    title Rescue_XP
    title memtest-2.01



    I have one partition called /accounts.
    Users link directories/files to /accounts/$USER for dir/files they want
    backed up.

    My /local/bin/xx_local.sh, linked in /etc/profile.d, has
    export TMP=$HOME/tmp
    export TMPDIR=$TMP
    export GCONF_TMPDIR=$TMPDIR
    export KDETMP=$TMP
    export KDEVARTMP=$TMPDIR
    That tends to take a load off of /tmp and puts temp work into
    $HOME/tmp of each user.

    I also have a /local where anything else is stored which is common
    across release or other distributions.

    That allows users to run the same desktop manager with different
    releases of the desktop manager in different installs.
    In the past when a new kde release ran, it modified the $HOME/.kde/*
    files. Those changes prevented you from going back to an old release.
    I have no idea what KDE4 is going to do to the $HOME/.kde files.

    My backup consists of a script which copies directories/files into
    another ~10 gig partition /bk_up.

    It then runs something like
    mkisofs -R -J -joliet-long -o $_bk_iso_fn /bk_up
    to create my backup iso of /bk_up contents.

    Besides burning to media, you can see
    $ ls bkup*iso |wc -l
    31
    shows I can loop mount a bkup iso to get any back file pretty quick.

    > * Do I need to backup anything under hda1 - / ?


    I backup about 31 config files for different applications and any files having
    modifications I may want to compare against in the new release.

    > * Will putting /swap on the 2nd HD REALLY improve performance?


    Swap on a different drive makes swap usage better if there is not a
    lot of is already going on in the drive.

    Do a free and see how much swap space is being used.
    I would not worry about it based on the amount of memory you have installed.

  3. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    Al wrote:

    > Hello all. Here is my system info and plan for partitioning and backup.
    > How does it look to you?
    >
    > Partition & Backup Plan
    >
    > * Clean install - Mandriva 2008
    >
    > * Celeron 2Ghz / 1GB RAM / 60GB & 80GB Internal HDs / 200GB External HD
    >
    > * Home Desktop - Light office work / Music / Photos / Videos / Cable &
    > Wireless Web Surfing / No LAN, Servers or Gaming
    >
    > * HD #1 - 60GB Internal
    > hda1 - / - 1GB
    > hda2 - /boot - 500MB
    > hda3 - /usr - 10GB
    > hda4 - /home - 45GB
    > hda5 - /var - 1GB
    > hda6 - /tmp
    >
    > * HD #2 - 80GB Internal
    > hdb1 - /swap - 2GB
    > hdb2 - /storage - 78GB
    >
    > * HD #3 - 200GB USB External
    > sda1 - /system backup - 135GB
    > sda2 - /music - 65GB
    >
    > * Backup hda1, hda2, hda3, hda4 & hdb2 to sda1 - /system backup
    >
    > Any suggestions to improve this layout would be much appreciated.
    >
    > * Am I backing up the right stuff?
    >
    > * Do I need to backup anything under hda1 - / ?
    >
    > * Will putting /swap on the 2nd HD REALLY improve performance?
    >
    > Many thanks for any and all ideas.
    >
    > alBERT

    I dont run a swap partition. I seem to get along fine without it. If you
    eliminate it and find later you need one you can always create a swap file
    Eric


  4. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Wed, 5 Mar 2008 00:30:36 +0000 (UTC), Bit Twister wrote:
    >
    >> * Will putting /swap on the 2nd HD REALLY improve performance?

    >
    > Swap on a different drive makes swap usage better if there is not a
    > lot of is already going on in the drive.


    Frap, that should read
    Swap on a different drive makes swap usage better if there is not a
    lot of activity already going on in the drive.

  5. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Tue, 04 Mar 2008 18:36:22 -0500, Al wrote:

    > * HD #1 - 60GB Internal
    > hda1 - / - 1GB
    > hda2 - /boot - 500MB
    > hda3 - /usr - 10GB
    > hda4 - /home - 45GB
    > hda5 - /var - 1GB
    > hda6 - /tmp


    You have to have one of hda1-4 as an extended partition, or you won't be
    able to create hda5&6.
    I no longer put /boot on a seperate partition, as memtest will not run.

    You may want a bit more for /, or break /opt into a seperate filesytem,
    depending on what you will be installing.

    My current space usage
    Filesystem Size Used Avail Use% Mounted on
    /dev/hda8 1020M 283M 738M 28% /
    /dev/mapper/LVA-home 1.0G 799M 226M 78% /home
    /dev/mapper/LVA-opt 2.0G 1.1G 1023M 51% /opt
    /dev/mapper/LVA-tmp 16G 33M 16G 1% /tmp
    /dev/mapper/LVA-usr 20G 8.7G 12G 44% /usr
    /dev/mapper/LVA-var 20G 7.8G 13G 39% /var
    /dev/hda11 510M 48M 463M 10% /var/log
    /dev/mapper/LVA-mnt 3.9M 196K 3.5M 6% /var/mnt
    /dev/mapper/davedata 32G 27G 5.1G 85% /var/mnt/data

    As above, / and /var/log are on regular extended partitions, while the rest are
    in a lvm2 physical partition, which makes much easier to shift free space from
    one filesystem, to another, if needed.

    The space used in /opt is mostly for kde4 (from the backports repository), open
    office, and adobe reader.

    The data file system is a luks encrypted filesystem, stored in a logical
    volume, with most of the data directories in my home partition, symlinked
    to directories in it.

    > * Backup hda1, hda2, hda3, hda4 & hdb2 to sda1 - /system backup


    You will need /var/lib (at least) backed up. You've got enough space
    for the backup, you don't even need to bother compressing it, so I'd
    just include all of /var in the backup.

    > * Do I need to backup anything under hda1 - / ?


    Of course. /etc, /bin, /lib, etc.

    > * Will putting /swap on the 2nd HD REALLY improve performance?


    With 1gb ram, it should be used rarely enough, that it won't make
    much difference.

    Read "man rsync"! I typically use something like
    rsync -avx /usr/ /var/mnt/backup/usr/
    Don't forget the /, on the end of the source directory name, to copy
    the contents, rather then including the directory name itself, in the
    sync.

    Regards, Dave Hodgins

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  6. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Tue, 04 Mar 2008 19:33:04 -0500, Eric wrote:

    > I dont run a swap partition. I seem to get along fine without it. If you
    > eliminate it and find later you need one you can always create a swap file


    It may work ok, but I would not recommend it, as it changes the way memory
    allocations are handled, and it's a real pain, when the system forces the
    wrong program to terminate, because it needs more memory.

    I have 2GB of ram. Last week I was compiling a program, and gcc used
    about 1840MB of ram. Quite unexpected, but because the swap was there,
    the system was able to keep going, with having to terminate any of the
    programs.

    Regards, Dave Hodgins

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  7. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    David W. Hodgins wrote:

    > On Tue, 04 Mar 2008 19:33:04 -0500, Eric wrote:
    >
    >> I dont run a swap partition. I seem to get along fine without it. If you
    >> eliminate it and find later you need one you can always create a swap file

    >
    > It may work ok, but I would not recommend it, as it changes the way memory
    > allocations are handled, and it's a real pain, when the system forces the
    > wrong program to terminate, because it needs more memory.
    >
    > I have 2GB of ram. Last week I was compiling a program, and gcc used
    > about 1840MB of ram. Quite unexpected, but because the swap was there,
    > the system was able to keep going, with having to terminate any of the
    > programs.
    >
    > Regards, Dave Hodgins
    >

    I see your point. For me, i have 4G of ram and thats enough space so i never
    get close to using it all. If i did, or thought i might in some particularly
    intense session I'd probably just make a swap file of a gig or so until i was
    done. What would be really cool is if you could get the os to make a swap
    file on the fly if it needed it and remove it after awhile of non-use or when
    memory usage fell below a certain limit for some length of time.
    Eric


  8. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    Eric wrote:

    > David W. Hodgins wrote:
    >
    >> On Tue, 04 Mar 2008 19:33:04 -0500, Eric wrote:
    >>
    >>> I dont run a swap partition. I seem to get along fine without it. If you
    >>> eliminate it and find later you need one you can always create a swap file

    >>
    >> It may work ok, but I would not recommend it, as it changes the way memory
    >> allocations are handled, and it's a real pain, when the system forces the
    >> wrong program to terminate, because it needs more memory.
    >>
    >> I have 2GB of ram. Last week I was compiling a program, and gcc used
    >> about 1840MB of ram. Quite unexpected, but because the swap was there,
    >> the system was able to keep going, with having to terminate any of the
    >> programs.
    >>
    >> Regards, Dave Hodgins
    >>

    > I see your point. For me, i have 4G of ram and thats enough space so i never
    > get close to using it all. If i did, or thought i might in some particularly
    > intense session I'd probably just make a swap file of a gig or so until i
    > was done. What would be really cool is if you could get the os to make a
    > swap file on the fly if it needed it and remove it after awhile of non-use
    > or when memory usage fell below a certain limit for some length of time.
    > Eric

    A current snapshot of my system looks like this:

    top - 17:30:03 up 5:43, 2 users, load average: 4.28, 4.12, 3.73
    Tasks: 211 total, 2 running, 209 sleeping, 0 stopped, 0 zombie
    Cpu0 : 0.0%us, 0.3%sy, 99.7%ni, 0.0%id, 0.0%wa, 0.0%hi, 0.0%si, 0.0%st
    Cpu1 : 2.7%us, 0.3%sy, 97.0%ni, 0.0%id, 0.0%wa, 0.0%hi, 0.0%si, 0.0%st
    Cpu2 : 0.0%us, 0.3%sy, 99.7%ni, 0.0%id, 0.0%wa, 0.0%hi, 0.0%si, 0.0%st
    Cpu3 : 0.0%us, 0.3%sy, 99.3%ni, 0.0%id, 0.0%wa, 0.3%hi, 0.0%si, 0.0%st
    Mem: 3978872k total, 3746228k used, 232644k free, 32792k buffers
    Swap: 0k total, 0k used, 0k free, 2827424k cached

    I've got 4 copies of seti@home running(and the boinc manager), gkrellm,
    Evolution, a couple console windows left open, X running kde, knode, and 4
    web pages. I could easily compile a kernel or 2 at the same time and still be
    ok on memory.
    Of course the OP has 1 gig which changes the situation.
    Eric



  9. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Tue, 04 Mar 2008 23:36:22 +0000, Al wrote:

    > Hello all. Here is my system info and plan for partitioning and backup.
    > How does it look to you?
    >
    > Partition & Backup Plan
    >
    > * Clean install - Mandriva 2008
    >
    > * Celeron 2Ghz / 1GB RAM / 60GB & 80GB Internal HDs / 200GB External HD
    >
    > * Home Desktop - Light office work / Music / Photos / Videos / Cable &
    > Wireless Web Surfing / No LAN, Servers or Gaming
    >
    > * HD #1 - 60GB Internal
    > hda1 - / - 1GB
    > hda2 - /boot - 500MB
    > hda3 - /usr - 10GB
    > hda4 - /home - 45GB
    > hda5 - /var - 1GB
    > hda6 - /tmp
    >
    > * HD #2 - 80GB Internal
    > hdb1 - /swap - 2GB
    > hdb2 - /storage - 78GB
    >
    > * HD #3 - 200GB USB External
    > sda1 - /system backup - 135GB
    > sda2 - /music - 65GB
    >
    > * Backup hda1, hda2, hda3, hda4 & hdb2 to sda1 - /system backup
    >
    > Any suggestions to improve this layout would be much appreciated.
    >
    > * Am I backing up the right stuff?
    >
    > * Do I need to backup anything under hda1 - / ?
    >
    > * Will putting /swap on the 2nd HD REALLY improve performance?
    >
    > Many thanks for any and all ideas.
    >
    > alBERT


    You don't say whether you are an experienced 'linuxer' or a newbie. Makes
    a difference. If this is your first attempt, I'd suggest you simply stuff
    the entire install in one partition and have one swap. Once you've had
    some experience, then go for it. IMHO - it's still a lot of mucking
    around. I'm familiar with the argument that you might want to have one /
    home to share among future distros, but I've found it to be simple enough
    to copy over. There is a lot to be said for one partition - for one thing
    you don't have to worry about / or /boot filling up.

    From a practical standpoint, where you put swap isn't going to matter
    unless you do a lot of swapping. And if you do, it's going to be
    incredibly slow anyway. You have three drives, how about a swap on each
    one?

  10. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Tue, 04 Mar 2008 20:32:59 -0500, Eric wrote:

    > I've got 4 copies of seti@home running(and the boinc manager), gkrellm,
    > Evolution, a couple console windows left open, X running kde, knode, and 4
    > web pages. I could easily compile a kernel or 2 at the same time and still be
    > ok on memory.


    I was running make on software I'd downloaded, openvrml. When I realised how
    much ram it was grabbing, I was expecting it to crash, and was planning on
    submitting a bug report, so I grabbed a copy of the output from htop ...

    PID USER PRI NI VIRT RES SHR S CPU% MEM% TIME+ Command
    15385 dave 20 0 1798M 1778M 4976 R 96.4 87.7 6:21.23 `- /usr/lib/gcc/i5

    To my surprise, it finished ok, although I ran into compile problems with another
    part of the package, later. With 2 or 3 hundred mb swapping in/out, the
    system wasn't very responsive, but it kept running. I wouldn't want to try
    that one, with a 1GB system.

    As I understand it, when a program allocates memory, with a swap file, the kernel
    gives it some memory, right away, and maps the rest to the swap file, only giving
    the program more memory, when actually needed. When you don't have a swap file,
    all of the requested memory must be available, and will all be allocatedimediately.
    Many programs allocate a lot more memory than they really need, just in case
    they might need it. Without the swap file, the extra requested memory must be
    available, even if it won't really be used, and if it isn't the program will fail.
    With the swap file, the program will run, and only slow down the system,by swap
    usage, if it's really using the extra memory.

    As you've pointed out, with a 4GB system, you can get away without a swap. With
    2GB, I thought I could too, but luckily chose to have one anyway.

    I do have a couple of lines in /etc/rc.d/rc.local from the link BitTwister posted,
    http://rudd-o.com/archives/2007/10/0...w-to-fix-that/
    to reduce the likelyhood of directories and programs being swapped out.
    $ grep sysctl /etc/rc.d/rc.local
    sysctl -w vm.swappiness=1 # Stop applications from being swapped to disk
    sysctl -w vm.vfs_cache_pressure=50 # Don't shrink the inode cache

    Regards, Dave Hodgins

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  11. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    Let me clarify a couple of items.

    1 - I'm planning on installing the latest PRODUCTION
    release of Mandriva, not the bleeding edge version.

    2 - While I don't write kernel code, I'm hardly a
    Linux newbie. I've been a user for >12 years, quit
    dual-booting Win98, am comfortable with the command
    line and love neat bash scripts.

    3 - I started this thread when I noticed that /usr had
    swollen to 96% full. (My weakness for experimenting
    with apps & utils got the best of me.) When I
    installed Mdv2007 - Spring, I figured that 5GB would
    suffice. I don't want to repeat this mistake.

    4 - I've never had a good b/u plan & have been nervous
    about this. I'm more concerned about the loss of data
    than I am about having to restore apps, configs,
    settings and window manager tweaks. With the new
    install & external HD, I plan to "get the backup
    religion."

    5 - The internal HDs on my system are IDE, not SCSI.

    Thanks to all for the suggestions. I'm learning a lot
    from this discussion.

    alBERT

  12. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    Al writes:

    >Let me clarify a couple of items.


    >1 - I'm planning on installing the latest PRODUCTION
    >release of Mandriva, not the bleeding edge version.


    2008.0


    >2 - While I don't write kernel code, I'm hardly a
    >Linux newbie. I've been a user for >12 years, quit
    >dual-booting Win98, am comfortable with the command
    >line and love neat bash scripts.


    >3 - I started this thread when I noticed that /usr had
    >swollen to 96% full. (My weakness for experimenting
    >with apps & utils got the best of me.) When I
    >installed Mdv2007 - Spring, I figured that 5GB would
    >suffice. I don't want to repeat this mistake.


    NOw I use / at 1GB and /usr at 10GB, with home and /usr/local/ in /local
    Note that the main user of space for /usr is /usr/share. It can be almost
    4GB all by itself.



    >4 - I've never had a good b/u plan & have been nervous
    >about this. I'm more concerned about the loss of data
    >than I am about having to restore apps, configs,
    >settings and window manager tweaks. With the new
    >install & external HD, I plan to "get the backup
    >religion."


    Buy another disk, and if you have another computer put it into that, and
    use rsnapshot to backup your system to that other disk. If you must put
    that disk intot he same machine, then you do need another backup strategy
    as well, since fire would wipe out both.



    >5 - The internal HDs on my system are IDE, not SCSI.


    Are they ide or aide ( which is very close to scsi).
    (They have the small -- 1/2cm bundle connector rather than the broad ribbon
    connector)



    >Thanks to all for the suggestions. I'm learning a lot
    >from this discussion.


    >alBERT


  13. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Wed, 05 Mar 2008 23:37:36 +0000, Unruh wrote:

    >
    > NOw I use / at 1GB and /usr at 10GB, with home and /usr/local/ in /local
    > Note that the main user of space for /usr is /usr/share. It can be
    > almost 4GB all by itself.


    I never looked down below /usr. This is good to find out.

    >
    >


    > Buy another disk, and if you have another computer put it into that, and
    > use rsnapshot to backup your system to that other disk. If you must put
    > that disk intot he same machine, then you do need another backup
    > strategy as well, since fire would wipe out both.


    Yeah...offsite b/u is a great idea!
    >
    >
    >
    >>5 - The internal HDs on my system are IDE, not SCSI.

    >
    > Are they ide or aide ( which is very close to scsi). (They have the
    > small -- 1/2cm bundle connector rather than the broad ribbon connector)
    >


    Older, slower IDE not AIDE.

    Thanks for the response.

    alBERT

  14. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On 05 Mar 2008 23:26:50 GMT, Al wrote:
    > Let me clarify a couple of items.
    >
    > 1 - I'm planning on installing the latest PRODUCTION
    > release of Mandriva, not the bleeding edge version.


    If that was about a comment I made about having more than one install
    of Mandriva on your system, here is what I was trying point out.

    I install all package groups except LSB, Icewm, Other desktops here
    http://images.howtoforge.com/images/...8.0/big/14.png
    plus an additional 180+ packages after booting. Besides development
    tools, kernel source and howtos, there is about 2 gig of games.
    That does not include third party apps, adobe flash, pdf, skype, realplayer,
    thunderbird, firefox, java from the vendor site.

    With the whole install into / here is my usage,

    $ df -h /
    Filesystem Size Used Avail Use% Mounted on
    /dev/sda14 12G 8.7G 2.1G 81% /

    Now, when the latest "PRODUCTION release of Mandriva" comes out, I
    install all of it in another ~12 gig partition.

    Once I know I have everything working, the old partition is free for
    use on the next PRODUCTION install. That way if something does not
    work I can compare config files between the old and new install.


  15. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    Great plan, Bit Twister!

    I live to tinker with new distros, desktops, window managers, apps and
    utils. But I have only been running the distros from the LiveCDs w/o
    installing them to HD. This has been my way of keeping the settings and
    stable OS intact and it doesn't give me an accurate picture of the
    performance and stability. Using your method would be much better.

    Thanks for the info.

    alBERT


    On Thu, 06 Mar 2008 01:07:49 +0000, Bit Twister wrote:

    >
    > I install all package groups except LSB, Icewm, Other desktops here
    > http://images.howtoforge.com/images/...ndriva_2008.0/

    big/14.png
    > plus an additional 180+ packages after booting. Besides development
    > tools, kernel source and howtos, there is about 2 gig of games. That
    > does not include third party apps, adobe flash, pdf, skype, realplayer,
    > thunderbird, firefox, java from the vendor site.
    >
    > With the whole install into / here is my usage,
    >
    > $ df -h /
    > Filesystem Size Used Avail Use% Mounted on /dev/sda14
    > 12G 8.7G 2.1G 81% /
    >
    > Now, when the latest "PRODUCTION release of Mandriva" comes out, I
    > install all of it in another ~12 gig partition.
    >
    > Once I know I have everything working, the old partition is free for use
    > on the next PRODUCTION install. That way if something does not work I
    > can compare config files between the old and new install.



  16. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    Al wrote:
    ....

    > 3 - I started this thread when I noticed that /usr had
    > swollen to 96% full. (My weakness for experimenting
    > with apps & utils got the best of me.) When I
    > installed Mdv2007 - Spring, I figured that 5GB would
    > suffice. I don't want to repeat this mistake.

    ....
    Would this be a good cue for someone to talk about LVM?

  17. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Thu, 06 Mar 2008 10:24:47 +0000, Frank Peelo wrote:
    > ...
    > Would this be a good cue for someone to talk about LVM?


    Only if grub can boot an LVM install and all distributions can manage
    LVM :-8

  18. Re: Partition & Backup Plan - How does this look to you?

    On Thu, 06 Mar 2008 06:15:26 -0500, Bit Twister wrote:

    > Only if grub can boot an LVM install and all distributions can manage
    > LVM :-8


    The root filesystem cannot be inside of an lvm, so that wouldn't be of
    any use, with the single partition per install.

    Regards, Dave Hodgins

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