Which filesystem should I choose?

Hi folks.

I have Fedora installed since version 30 on my Asus K45VM laptop.
I choosed Ext4 file system as standard partition during the installation of Fedora 30 as I was not familiar with LVM and because standard Ext4 is the default file system in Ubuntu and some other linux distros.
During these years I had no major problem with Fedora and I have upgraded it regularly at six month intervals.
As you know Btrfs is the default file system for Fedora 34 and I’m thinking about reinstalling Fedora with Btrfs. However, this is a system with IvyBridge cpu and 1 TB HDD without any SDD storage. So, I don’t know whether reinstalling fedora with newer file system has any advantage for my system or not.
So what do you recommend considering these following scenarios?

1- Keep Fedora with standard Ext4 file system.

2- Reinstall Fedora with LVM based Ext4 file system.

  1. Reinstall Fedora with Btrfs file system.

Thank you in advance and sorry for my english.

I installed F34 keeping all defaults, including btrfs as file system and couple of months later file system went bananas after hard reboot. I then reinstalled F34, but this time I did custom partitioning, keeping default Fedora’s partitioning scheme (partitions, encrypted root on LVM, etc), but replacing btrfs with ext4.
I know, maybe I was simply unfortunate with btrfs, but I decided not to risk my main laptop and stay on ext4 longer. Of course, I miss btrfs snapshots, but I decided to be better save than sorry.



Never change a running system?! Unless you need one of the features that Btrfs bring (for example snapshots, or more efficient use of space since /home and / are not on different partitions, …) (see https://linuxhint.com/btrfs-vs-ext4-filesystems-comparison/ for a comparison).


:point_up: would be my recommendation.

Unless you need/want the features of btrfs such as snapshots/subvolumes, I would never reinstall an existing system because the default filesystem has changed over time.

This would make little sense unless you have a specific need for LVM for some other purpose.

Generally speaking, in the most simplified sense. btrfs is giving you a bunch of advanced features at the cost of a small impact to performance and reliability. So, if you don’t want or need those features, you are better off sticking with ext4. On the other hand, some of those features are really cool. :wink:

For what it is worth, I have started using either btrfs or zfs on almost all my Linux installs. However, in most cases I don’t convert existing installs to use those filesystems.

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I find using regular partitions (non LVM) (plain or LUKS encrypted) ext4 to be most convenient for my personal use.

For full backups, boot with a Live USB and external drive connected, save a copy of the partition table followed by saving a tar backup of each partition (of course, unlock the LUKS ones)

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you might put upcoming " DNF/RPM Copy on Write" into your calculation ?
a clean install from time to time maybe clean up some collected old cruft too
(esp. with an secure erase before, esp. on ssd’s - currently not your case. though -)


=> “… reduces the amount of I/O and offsets CPU cost of package decompression …” esp. (???) on an IvyBridge [1]

I too own an IvyBridge (i5-3475S) and it’s not significant slower then my i7-6700 in an daily use case

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wasn’t the idea behind “OS for free” for “delivering bug reports” a main concept of open source ?
with “delivering bug reports” I esp. mean install bugs here.

Thank you all, I will keep upgrading Fedora and will see what happens.


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