Thursday, December 04, 2008

EXT4 Benchmarks

The next stable kernel (2.6.28) will have EXT4 file system marked as stable. This file system has been developed for some time and finally it's being pushed to Linus' kernel tree (and approved). The kernel 2.6.28 has reached Release Candidate 7, meaning that it's getting closer to get the final version somewhere in this month or probably early in January. Phoronix has taken an early benchmark of four different file systems: EXT3, EXT4, XFS, and ReiserFS to compare several operations using the Phoronix Test Suite.

The result is that EXT4 is quite promising. While it's not the perfect file system, it does bring some performance improvements over EXT3 when it came to the pure disk benchmarks. Some conclusion from Phoronix:
EXT4 is more scalable, more efficient through the use of Extents, supports larger disk capacities, can handle twice the number of sub-directories, is capable of handling online defragmentation, and there is improved reliability via journal checksums.
It's not yet widely used, since the kernel that supports it is not yet released, but i have a feeling that in the next six months, some Linux distribution will start using it after they have done several tests to make sure it's stable enough to be used for daily activities. We will see this next year big grin