Gentoo Archives: gentoo-dev

From: Duncan <1i5t5.duncan@×××.net>
To: gentoo-dev@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-dev] Re: About suggesting to create a separate partition for portage tree in handbook
Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2012 02:24:09
In Reply to: Re: [gentoo-dev] About suggesting to create a separate partition for portage tree in handbook by Dale
1 Dale posted on Wed, 28 Mar 2012 19:35:40 -0500 as excerpted:
3 > Joshua Saddler wrote:
4 >> On Tue, 27 Mar 2012 19:49:00 +0200 Pacho Ramos <pacho@g.o>
5 >> wrote:
6 >>
7 >>> I am a bit surprised handbook still doesn't suggest people to create a
8 >>> separate partition for /usr/portage tree. I remember my first Gentoo
9 >>> systems had it inside / and that lead to a lot of fragmentation, much
10 >>> slower "emerge -pvuDN world" [and] a lot of disk space lost
12 >>> Could handbook suggest people to put /usr/portage on a different
13 >>> partition then? The only doubt I have is what filesystem would be
14 >>> better for it, in my case I am using reiserfs with tail enabled, but
15 >>> maybe you have other different setups.
17 >> not gonna happen, for reasons that SwifT & others already mentioned.
18 >> this is the sort of non-simple, non-trivial text/info/instructions that
19 >> would be better suited to an "optimizing your FS layout" article on the
20 >> gentoo wiki, or similar.
22 Agreed, tho ACTUALLY having the documentation available, AND LINKING to
23 it in the handbook ("For an in-depth discussion, read..."), would be a
24 good thing.
26 > Well, way back when I first installed Gentoo, I actually read some
27 > before I even started. I learned through all that reading that /,
28 > /boot, /home, /usr, /usr/portage and /var are best on their own
29 > partition. Each of those are for different reasons.
31 Same here. It's a bit of a point of pride for me that before I even had
32 my own gentoo system installed (some problem due to my wanting posix
33 threading, then relatively new to Linux, over Linux threads; didn't work
34 for me with 2004.0, worked great with 2004.1), I had read the handbook,
35 etc, and was replying on the lists to questions from folks who obviously
36 hadn't read up...
38 But I already had a good idea what I wanted my partition layout to look
39 like based on my Mandrake experience. The questions I needed to ask,
40 because they were NOT covered in the manual (or anywhere else in the
41 documentation I could find at the time), and because they were self-
42 evidently going to have rather different answers on gentoo than on
43 mandrake, were things like:
45 Just how big IS the portage tree?
47 What about the package tree?
49 What about the sources tree?
51 After a couple partition reorganizations, I ended up with sources inside
52 the portage tree, but packages on its own partition, making it easier to
53 keep packages backed up, something the portage tree and sources don't
54 need as the net's a far more sufficient backup for them than I could ever
55 manage locally.
58 For years I've thought that a bit more emphasis should be placed on
59 FEATURES=binpkg, given the many ways it can save your ass and/or make
60 troubleshooting a current version issue far easier. And while I agree
61 that the installation section of the handbook, in any case, isn't the
62 place for complex discussion of the many system partitioning schemes and
63 their positives/negatives, information such as the above, exactly what
64 sort of realistic sizes can be expected for the portage tree itself, for
65 sources, and for binpkgs (if the feature is enabled), should be covered.
67 That's because most gentoo users have at least some experience on other
68 distros before they come to gentoo, and thus likely already have a
69 preferred partitioning setup... if they care about it at all. All they
70 really need is information about the relative sizes of gentoo-specific
71 features, the ebuild tree, sources, and binpkgs, and perhaps a bit better
72 coverage of the binpkgs option (which I'd simply link-punt in the install
73 section as well, but cover it a bit better under the working with portage
74 section, with the install-section link pointing there).
76 > The root partition is obvious, I would hope anyway. ;-) The boot
77 > partitions comes in handy if you don't automount it or have more than
78 > one distro installed. Home is obvious. People recommended /usr because
79 > it could a) be mounted read only and b) it can be enlarged if needed
80 > since it tends to grow a lot. Portage since it is tons of small files
81 > and tends to fragment a lot. The var partition is so that if some error
82 > message repeats itself overnight and fills up the partition it at least
83 > doesn't lock up the whole system. I actually had this one happen to me
84 > once. For some reason, even logrotate didn't catch it, tar up and
85 > delete the old ones. I woke up to a mess that only going to single user
86 > would fix. The best thing I did was to have /var on its own partition.
88 FWIW, that's /var/log on it's own partition here, for exactly the reason
89 you mention. But /var itself is on rootfs here, these days.
91 > When people are planning to install Gentoo and they have not done at
92 > least some research, I think they should get to keep the pieces.
93 > Installing Gentoo is not something to do on a whim. It should be
94 > planned and thought through even if the person is completely new to
95 > Gentoo. I read up for at least a month before ever even starting.
97 Again agreed,
99 But really, to some degree it's something that's only learned from
100 experience. If anything, what I'd suggest for the installation manual
101 partitioning section would be a variant on the programmer's dictum:
103 "Plan to throw one away, because you're either going to end up doing it
104 anyway after you make your mistakes and figure out the way you /should/
105 have done it, or putting up with a sub-optimum setup if you don't throw
106 one away, and planning for it from the beginning will make the process
107 easier when the time comes."
109 I know I've gone thru several partition layout iterations here, before I
110 came up with something very close to what I'd consider optimal... that
111 has stayed that way for several years.
113 =:^)
115 > I agree with having a simple manual for the folks that want to install
116 > just to look and then have a separate manual, wiki even, for more
117 > serious set ups. This can include things like RAID, LVM and having more
118 > than a couple partitions. Of course, Gentoo is almost endless in
119 > options.
121 Agreed. The only thing I'd add would be that the simple installation
122 should have "for more information" type links to the more complex
123 discussions of each step/decision, at the appropriate place. Then people
124 like Dale and I will read them, and but they'll be clearly marked "for
125 more information" or similar, so those uninterested in that sort of
126 discussion can easily skip it. =:^)
128 --
129 Duncan - List replies preferred. No HTML msgs.
130 "Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
131 and if you use the program, he is your master." Richard Stallman