Re: About to format the whole laptop, need some partitioning advice.
> Someone asked how much RAM you have. How much? 1G is not enough with Gnome 3.
> More than 4G is more than is necessary under many "normal" loads, but
> if you don't have 4G, 4G is reasonable. If you can add memory or
> replace what you have and have the money to spare.
I have 8 GB ram :)
> What are Neo and Workstation for? (May I ask?)
They contained movies and PDF and were windows partitions and will be going off.
> Did that tool also have diagnostics? Was it the ASUS provided tool?
> Did you run some tool to check that your HD is not having smartdrive
> issues? (Ergo, not dying an untimely death.)
No it just gave me the copying speed of HDD. Its a standard linux
utility but I forgot the name.
> Suggestions from me (and no reasons to trust me more than anyone else, perhaps):
> / (root partition) should be at least large enough to handle a /var
> gone out of control if /var doesn't mount, or if you don't have a
> separate /var. Minimum 4G (base ten or base two, either way). I'd go
> with 8G, since you're starting with a drive bigger than 120G. Larger
> if you do choose to combine /usr and /var, and so forth, with the root
> /etc? I've seen recommendations to separate /etc as a partition. It's
> a bit of a trap for a home-use machine, don't do it this time around.
> Keep /etc with /.
> /bin? /sbin? /ilb? Keep these combined with / unless you like to
> confuse the kernel when it i trying to boot and can't find any of the
> standard tools or even some of the libraries it needs to boot even to
> single-user mode these days.
> /usr? There are strange things that happen to Red Hat (Fedora, etc.)
> style machines during boot that indicate against /usr being separate.
> I've been bitten by them on Fedora, which is one of the reasons I am
> using Debian now.
> I keep /usr separate because it tends to change a lot when you install
> and remove packages. It's that simple.
> However, you don't need more than 32G for /usr unless you really go
> crazy installing (literally) every package available, and installing a
> lot of packages is one good way to slow your machine down on boot and
> login. (Of course, if you don't install lots of stuff, you never get
> to play with it and discover new tools. :-/)
> Well, be a bit careful what you install beyond what you know you
> need, but not too careful. Anyway, 32G for /usr should not be
> overkill, and won't be too time consuming when it has to be fsck-ed.
> fsck demonstrates one good reason to keep partitions small. Large
> partitions take longer on fsck and similar maintenance.
> And if you ever have to search for lost text files with testdisk or
> such, larger than 32G can be a real, serious show stopper. (I gave up
> when I lost two-days' work to a bad Makefile just two weeks back,
> because the files were text files and too small for testdisk to see in
> the partition they were in. Could have resorted to lower-level
> techniques like grep /dev/sda3 or hexdump -C | grep, but I decided it
> would be faster to use my gray-matter and type the stuff in from
> scratch. It was. (First time took two days to produce the files,
> second time took four hours, and was good for checking my work.
> Programming is like that in a lot of cases. 8-o)
I also like to be a good programmer :)
> Unfortunately, /usr/bin, /usr/sbin, and /usr/lib may contain stuff
> that the boot-up process wants to use, and may thus cause problems if
> they can't be mounted. As I say, I saw that on Fedora. Not on Debian.
> That says something about the differences between the two, I think.
> (Fedora folks keep themselves busy inventing solutions to problems of
> their own making, it seems to me. That's okay for them. Maybe someday
> in the distant future, the side-tour on systemd will bear meaningful
> fruit. I don't expect it to happen this year or next, and that's
> another reason I'm using Debian now. They can have their fun. I need
> to focus on other things, myself.)
> So, for Debian, I recommend a separate /usr, 32G since you have it.
> /tmp? Some say it is not used any more. I say give it at least 8G. 16G
> since you have a big HD to start with. I've used it on odd occasions,
> and making it too small is bad news. Keeping it separate, so that you
> can separate the stuff that changes from the stuff that doesn't is
> still a good idea.
> /var? Similar to my advice on /tmp, separate partition to separate the
> stuff that changes a lot from the stuff that doesn't change as much.
> But /var tends to stay around, where /tmp is supposed to be cleared
> (or clear-able) on boot. So, I'd recommend 16G or even 32G for /var.
> /var gets really hammered on system updates. /var/log gets filled up
> quickly when things go south.
> And there is /var/tmp which gets used more than /tmp these days. (Both
> still get used, even though there are those who claim that ramdisk
> temporary files make more sense. Such arguments tend to ignore certain
> real-world issues and practices.)
Why is it that all partitions you are recommending are multiples of 2?
Any specific reason behind this?
> On Fedora, I'd recommend a separate 16G partition for /var/tmp, but
> separating /var/tmp is not necessary on Debian.
> /home -- 32G. Yes, that will get filled up. That's a good thing,
> because you then see what you have that needs to be backed up and what
> you have that just needs to be deleted.
> If you have reason to host your own http or ftp servers, you might
> wish to allocate the base directories for those as /var/ftp and
> /var/www or the like. Oh, yeah, samba (or whatever Redmond says that
> should be called these days) and nfs shares, too. (And netatalk?) If
> you do host services, you probably want to mount their base
> directories as separate partitions.
> That leaves you with a huge unallocated piece of your hard disk. This
> is a good thing. It helps you see what you are using, where, and why.
> And when you need to adjust things, you have unused disk space to
> partition a bit more out of and mount somewhere (such as, say,
> su -h and df -h are good tools to help you see what's being used
> where. Check the man pages for them out.
> LVM versus DOS extended? I like both. Probably not on the same
> machine. LVM has flexibility, since, if you discover that 16G for /var
> won't carry you through a system upgrade, you can simply add space to
> /var instead of copying sub-directories to their own partitions. Be
> aware, however, that too much playing with LVM to adjust your
> partition sizes will definitely slow your file system down.
> Oh, and if you leave yourself a lot of unallocated disk space, that
> leaves more room for VMs, later.
>> 2) [...(has been answered)]
> One more BTW -- You do want to purchase an external HD for backup.
> You'll be much less stressed out when things don't do what you expect
> them to, and, if you are studying engineering stuff, you have to get
> used to the idea that things don't happen the way you expect.
It was right there top on my list of purchases.Suddenly something really
bad happened today, and all my budget is shattered. You have given such
a detailed description of everything and I cannot try anything.