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Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

Jeff Gyurko
Frequent Advisor

Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

Hi, I'm looking to get a feeling of what everyone preferrs when it comes to installing HP-UX. This shouldn't matter what the revision is, but if there are differences you like, let me hear them.

The issue centers around installing HP-UX and choosing separate filesystems for the generally known filesystems like opt, var, usr... Do you still prefer to have separate filesystems or have you moved to whole disk? Maybe a subset of whole disk where you separate /home & /tmp, but the rest is whole disk. Let me know what your preferences are & why you chose that as your preference.

I'm starting to lean towards a whole disk mentality like I do currently on linux, but our whole environment will be moving to 11.31 on Itanium and I feel the default sizes are way to low to be practical for long.
7 REPLIES
Torsten.
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

It's IMHO much more flexible if you use a dedicated LVOL for each.

Hope this helps!
Regards
Torsten.

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Pete Randall
Outstanding Contributor

Re: Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

I gave up whole disk when I migrated to 10.0 and have never looked back - way too confining for my taste.


Pete

Pete
Julián Aimar
Frequent Advisor

Re: Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

Hi,

I work with FS this is most flexible and simple, if you install OnlineJFS FS is very flexible to extend/reduce, except fs / & /stand

my english is poor, sorry :-)

Saludos

JEA

Olivier Masse
Honored Contributor

Re: Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

I'll admit first hand that Linux (and even Windows) admins can be disgusted when they see how HP-UX splices up space in multiple filesystems. Doing it this way prevents an unnoticed renegade application from filling up the entire disk. I prefer seeing /var, or /opt fill up than /, and the server will remain up and running.

So I'm with Julian, i.e. I find that HP-UX's way is better, but it is manageable *ONLY* if you have Online JFS. If you don't have it, you'll be better off using whole disk!

Also you need to be careful when installing a vanilla system as I find the default values insufficient, and / cannot be resized easily after the fact (at least, it was the case a few years ago).

Good luck
James R. Ferguson
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

Hi Jeff:

> and I feel the default sizes are way to low to be practical for long.

When you cold-install (and that's the desirable way whenever you can), you can _choose_ your logical volume sizes. There is nothing to prevent you from accomodating your immediate and projected needs at that time.

As noted, you would be remiss if you didn't have OnlineJFS. In 11.31 it comes with any operating environment beyond the default/entry one. Aside from using OnlineJFS to resize filesystems you most certainly want it for its filesystem snapshot ability (for backups) and for its additional filesystem mount options with which you can optimize performance according to what the filesystem needs to do (permanently or temporarily).

While different than Linux environments, the idea of separate filesystems (logical volumes) for the standard Unix directories is to provide isolation and some protection from filling you whole disk when a rogue process or stupid mistake creates gigabytes of output.

Regards!

...JRF...
Bill Hassell
Honored Contributor

Re: Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

Using a whole disk approach is OK assuming that you know that almost no one else will use this approach. HP-UX is not free and usually found in large enterprise environments where a full disk can cripple a system. The default sizes are only a guess. It makes no sense to make /opt, /usr, /var and /tmp 50GB as the default size...but in large systems, /var might have to be 50 GB.

If you have a very small system, perhaps 2-4 GB of RAM and one or two internal disks, then you might experiment with a whole disk layout. I would be concerned about Ignite/UX (the only way to restore your system with a complete disk failure) and possibly other obscure side effects, especially with Itanium and 11.31.

If this is a test box, then go for it. Otherwise, I would not put a system like this into production. As mentioned, the separation of the various mountpoints is a method to protect production by isolating filesystems. A whole disk layout guarantees system failure when any rogue process creates a huge file or millions of small files.


Bill Hassell, sysadmin
Viktor Balogh
Honored Contributor

Re: Preferred install - FS vs. Whole Disk

Hi,

For me this 'whole disk' naming is a little bit distracting. I use this wording usually for LVM ( ~ whole disk approach, where the whole disk will be pvcreated to be used for LVM). What you mentioned is rather a 'whole disk - single FS'
I am against this single FS approach, as it was mentioned the FS can be easily filled by some dumb processes, especially /var /var/tmp and /tmp. I prefer using some volume manager, be it LVM or VxVM.

****
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