JFS, ReiserFS and XFS for CentOS

By jbayer - Last updated: Thursday, December 9, 2010 - Save & Share - Leave a Comment

CentOS is usually used as a server.  As such it quite often needs to deal with large files and large data transfers.  The default filesystems for CentOS is ext3, which, while a very reliable and proven filesystem, is not well suited to a large server environment.  There are quite a number of other filesystems available, among the more popular ones are XFS and ReiserFS.

JFS and ReiserFS

In order to have CentOS use a JFS or ReiserFS filesystem, you will need to install the CentOSPlus kernel and the creation tools.  Use the following steps to prepare for the installation:

1.  Edit /etc/yum.repos.d/CentOS-Base.repo and modify the following in the [centosplus] section:

enabled=1
includepkgs=kernel* jfsutils reiserfs-utils

2. In the [base] and [update] section you would do the following:

exclude=kernel kernel-devel kernel-PAE-*

3. Finally, run the following command:

yum install kernel

4. Reboot and you’ll have ReiserFS support

JFS and ReiserFS usage details are beyond the scope of this page.

XFS

XFS is a high-performance journaling file system created by Silicon Graphics, originally for their IRIX operating system and later ported to the Linux kernel. XFS is particularly proficient at handling large files and at offering smooth data transfers.

The 64 bit version of CentOS does support XFS.

Note that XFS is not available for i386 since it has problems with 4K kernel
stacks (in some situations).

1.  Issue the following command

yum list available kmod-xfs\*

The results would be something like this (example is for CentOS-5 x86_64):

Available Packages
kmod-xfs.x86_64                     0.4-2            extras
kmod-xfs-xen.x86_64                 0.4-2            extras

2.  You would then pick the module that you need and install it with a command similar to:

yum install kmod-xfs xfsdump xfsprogs

Note: The kernel module also has dmapi support, so you can add dmapi to the above install line if you want to use it. XFS usage details are beyond the scope of this page.

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