[Ardour-Users] Audio drive - file system?

Arnold Krille arnold at arnoldarts.de
Mon Aug 20 14:05:18 PDT 2012

On Mon, 20 Aug 2012 15:23:46 +0200
Ralf Mardorf <ralf.mardorf at alice-dsl.net> wrote:
> On Mon, 2012-08-20 at 14:17 +0100, Noel Darlow wrote:
> > > >  Okay, so i am now considering a seperate external drive for the
> > > > audio file. Which file system should i format in?
> > XFS is a good filesystem for media (ie large) files on a dedicated
> > AV partition. More here:
> > http://www.mythtv.org/wiki/XFS_Filesystem
> That's the Wiki, but could you please explain why somebody should use
> something exotic?

XFS is neither exotic nor is it only good for large files (>4MB).
It also has strengths with lots of small files like what is found on a
maildir/cyrus mailserver.

In terms of performance, tests show that ext4 and xfs are the two
mainstream filesystems that are competing for the first and second

Only drawback with xfs is that it can't be shrunk. Normally you would
just create a new smaller partition and copy the files, but we do have
clients where there would be a benefit if one partition was shrunk only
there is no space for a another partition available. And no remaining
disk-slot for another drive...

For audio (to get back on topic), you have big files (as audio-files
tend to range from several to several hundred MB unless you do midi or
tracker stuff) but don't let that fool you: Typical DAW reads from many
files simultaneously so you don't really need fast sequential reading
but fast non-sequential reading. So when you think about getting a ssd
for your system, think twice and use the ssd for your audio stuff. You
load ardour only once a day but the audio is loaded every time hit

Have fun,

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