I was just curious to know... What are some good rules of thumb for
configuring swap space under Linux? For that matter, are there any
comprehensive guides or articles on the subject? When I used to admin
NT boxes I used to set their "virtual memory" setting to 1.5 times
physical memory, giving 50% over physical as swap. That was just by
convention, or, "rule of thumb". No great scientific methodology, it is
just what had worked for me and my coworkers for so long. Granted,
Linux is different.

On my box I have installed Ubuntu and moved up to the 2.6.10 kernel, if
that matters. I am presently running on two IDE hard drives, 30Mb
Quantum Fireball and 60Mb Seagate ST360020A. As it stands, I have 1Gb
of physical RAM and have two swap partitions, one on each drive and both
494.16Mb. Initially I had set up a 32-bit install on one drive, and a
64-bit (AMD64) on the other. I decided to go with my old NT convention
for grins, and give 50% over physical for swap. But since I have both
swap partitions available, I have both the 32 and 64 bit installs using
both swaps, for a nearly 1:1 phys:swap ratio.

Reason I am asking is because I will be very soon installing a 250Gb
Western Digital SATA drive. Long story on the old one, but short
version is it shot craps before I could ever use it. But now since I
will be getting all this breathing room I will of course be
reconfiguring my partitioning scheme. So given the opportunity I would
like to put some method to the madness.

One consideration, besides size, is location. This question goes beyond
swap space, too. How does Linux like to have it's partitions metered
across multiple drives? Should the root and swap be on different
physical drives or does it matter? If it is better to separate, which
would benefit most from "the faster drive"? Does it actually help to
split the swap amongst partitions on differing drives, similar to (yes,
remotely similar to) how striping speeds up RAID performance?

While I am asking, I would also be interested in suggestions with regard
to partitions and placements. I have been running 5Gb roots that include
my /var and /home. Most of my "media", including music, video, photos,
and the like I have been keeping on a separate partition that I mount
under /mnt/share. This way I have access to it from whichever root I
boot to, as well as making it publicly readable to my family's logins.
Not much needs to be kept private, and, well, I manage that when need be.

I think it would be unwise for me to make the /home directories be the
same between the two installs (32 and 64-bit). But I am intruiged to
know how far such a notion could be taken. Being able to have
Thunderbird and my GPG keys available no matter which I boot to would be
rather convenient. I could spend more time in 64-bit land. Right now I
must use the 32-bit install for that.

Lastly, since I don't want to tap you all toooo much all at once, I am
curious about this whole "chroot" thing. Since I have both 32 and
64-bit installs, is there a way to make my 32-bit root BE the chroot
under 64-bit? That would totally rock! I have zero experience with this
and am only sort-of understanding how it all works. I would like to,
for instance, just run 64-bit firefox and have it use 32-bit
libflashplayer.so. That, of course, being one of the very few things
keeping me on the 32-bit side 90% of the time when I would much rather
go 64-bit as much as possible. But I have heard that you can't have a
64-bit app call a 32-bit library. Okay. So then 32-bit FF. But then
that also means all the dependencies for FF and for FlashPlayer, right?
Well, then, at what point DO the 64 and 32-bit parts commingle? Would
32-bit FF run on the 64-bit X session? That, I could see. Or is it
some "xnest" type set-up? If it dose run on the display, would it talk
to 64-bit Gnome? What kind of crazy nightmare am I getting myself into
with this chroot thingy? Am I better off sitting in a corner, beating my
head against the wall? Maybe I should stop wasting my time on this and
use it more (!) effectively, writing pleas to Macromedia to get off
their corporate duffs and spend the, what, hour or two it would (should:
can't know with closed-source) take to do the damned port.

Well that's all the time my meter had, and then some. Thanks in advance
for the time to read me and for any help and advice. And apologies for
the cross-posting. You know, I have not seen any "forum guides" of any
sort come down the pike on any of these newsgroups for a few months. So
which Linux newsgroup is good for what sorts of linuxy things I just
don't know. I'd "RTFM" on these newsgroups if I knew where to find it.