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Splitting installation between USB and HDD's ?
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jerrykenny
Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper


Joined: 07 Feb 2005
Posts: 105

PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 4:57 pm    Post subject: Splitting installation between USB and HDD's ? Reply with quote

Thinking aloud . . .

I'm intrigued by the possibilities of the new internal flash drives, however, they do have some drawbacks (lifecycle), and theyre actually excessively big for most most Linux Distros.

It seems to me a good alternative approach would be to make a full working installation onto your hard drive, then clone /usr onto a USB pendrive of say 10Gb.

But would this give me any benefits re improved read times ? i'm thinking it'll save my hard drive a wee bit of work, perhaps speed up loading of programmes, whilst at the same time not subjecting the pendrive to a lot of read / write cycles.

It seems to me that internal solid state hard drives of ~ 100 Gb are surely aimed at the Microsoft Windows market where partitioning is not so widely practiced. USB pendrives are admittedly not as fast, but 10Gb is surely large enough for a Linux Distro, and we wouldnt ever want to put /var /home /tmp or swap onto a solid state drive anyway.

/boot could also be copied on the pendrive and comparisons made of bootup times.

I'm sure this has been discussed sensibly somewhere, . . . . . i'm just toying with the possibilities of combining flsah-drive speed/silence with a hard drives ease of installation, read/write capacity, reliability and persistence.
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NeddySeagoon
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Joined: 05 Jul 2003
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jerrykenny,

The performace of USB storage devices is pretty dire as they cannot use DMA modes.
Having said that, I have Gentoo on a 16G USB pen drive, just with /usr/portage missing.
Its mirrored from a hard drive install that has /usr/portage on its own partition, that makes it easy to leave behind when I copy it over.
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those that have never had a hard drive fail.
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