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RE: recommended partitioning

>Hi. If there is anyone out there, I am trying to install debian and
>wondered what would be a good partition scheme for a 408MB drive. It will
>be running solo debian.
>Thanks so much

     I know you've received at least one reply, but let me put in my 1.575128
Euro's worth.

With 408M, you'll find it a little tight, depending on what you install. The
general rule for swap used to be twice your RAM, but that was when RAM was
expensive and swap schemes worked differently. It is hard to get a good answer
for swap space now, but I have 64M RAM and 64M swap. For the other partitions, /
<ROOT> doesn't need a lot of space. If you read the FHS, File System Hierarchy
System, it will give lots of info for which partitions should be mounted
Read-only and which should be Read/Write. I wish I had read this before I'd
partitioned, but we all learn as we go. The most important reason for separate
partitions is to protect the different directories. I made / small, /usr rather
big and /home even bigger. This saved me when a StarOffice installation went
horribly wrong. I had to re-install from the boot disk and re-initialise my /
and /usr partitions. The stuff in /home was still there. I'm still new, and
learning all the time. As I read more about the FHS, I'm looking into
re-partitioning my system for even more protection.

Again, with only 408M to work with, you want to be very frugal. So, here's the
suggestions, open to comments;

Swap: The more you run, the more virtual memory your system will need. If you
want to run X and Netscape or compile lots of stuff, don't compromise.
Otherwise, don't waste the space.

/ <ROOT>: this take very little room, so make it small. BUT, make sure you have
other partitions for the rest of your system.
/home: This is where you will probably keep personal files. This is also where
most computer get hung from full file systems. As long as / is on a separate
partition, you can still log in as root and remove some stuff to get back in.
/usr: This is where most of the app's end up, somewhere. So you want to be sure
you have enough for what you want and what you may look for in the future.
/var: This is where the system keeps changing info, I.E. <var>iable. Mostly logs
and spools for mail or printing. This is another culprit for wasted space.
Keeping it on a separate partition will keep a full /var from locking up the
system completely.

There are lots of other ways to 'Cut the cake'. Have a read through the FHS for
a good idea of where different things are kept, and have a look at just how much
you want to put on the system to get a good partitioning scheme. Re-partitioning
is a pain, so it's better to get it right than to decide you want to change it
later. Also, having several partitions will make it easier to move thing around
when you add hard drives to your system.

This is just some of the info I've picked up since I started learning Linux just
over a year ago. I'm sure there is lots of room for comments and corrections.


     John Gay

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