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From Byron Miller <>
Subject Re: Performance and FS block size
Date Sat, 11 Feb 2006 03:02:35 GMT

If i'm not mistaken block size especially on ext3
becomes an issue when you hit a peak amount of total
blocks and lose performance on inode lookup vs that of
of Reiserfs.. for example you may gain performance by
going to 4k vs 1k on ext3 however Reiserfs at that
block level size should be xx times faster in many

HOWEVER that only considers if your data is fitting in
that block size. If you have hundreds of thousands of
1-4k files Reiserfs at 1k block size would be best
(least wastefull and faster access because of it's
b-tree lookup) but if your dealing with lots of large
files there won't be much difference unless you switch
altogether to XFS which has fairly aggressive caching
and performance in mind. (it simply doesn't wait and
keeps on trucking, heavy utilization of memory to
buffer throughput)

What does your hdparm speeds look like?


booger@svr1 [/home/mozdex/segments]# dumpe2fs
/dev/sdb1 | grep "Block size"
dumpe2fs 1.32 (09-Nov-2002)
Block size:               4096
booger@svr1 [/home/mozdex/segments]# hdparm -tT

 Timing buffer-cache reads:   3372 MB in  2.00 seconds
= 1685.89 MB/sec
 Timing buffered disk reads:  110 MB in  3.00 seconds
=  36.62 MB/sec
booger@svr1 [/home/mozdex/segments]#

My server is under load at these test however they
came out pretty good considering :)

--- Otis Gospodnetic <>

> Hi,
> Thanks for the speedy answer, this is good to know.
> However, i was wondering about the FS block size....
> consider a Linux box:
> $ dumpe2fs  /dev/sda1 | grep "Block size"
> dumpe2fs 1.36 (05-Feb-2005)
> Block size:               1024
> That shows /dev/sda1 has blocks 1k in size.  I don't
> think these can be changed "on-the-fly", and can be
> changed only by re-creating the FS (e.g. mkfs.ext3
> .... under Linux).  Thus, I can't test different
> block sizes easily, and am wondering if anyone has
> already done this, or simply knows what block size,
> theoretically at least, should perform better.
> Thanks,
> Otis
> ----- Original Message ----
> From: Michael D. Curtin <>
> To:
> Sent: Fri 10 Feb 2006 05:05:07 PM EST
> Subject: Re: Performance and FS block size
> Otis Gospodnetic wrote:
> > Hi,
> > 
> > I'm wondering if anyone has tested Lucene
> indexing/search performance with different file
> system block sizes?
> > 
> > I just realized one of the servers where I run a
> lot of Lucene indexing and searching has an FS with
> blocks of only 1K in size (typically they are 4k or
> 8k, I believe), so I started wondering what's better
> for Lucene - smaller or larger blocks?  I have a
> feeling 1K is too small, although I don't know
> enough to back up this feeling. :(
> On my system (dual Xeon with a couple 120GB S-ATA
> drives (not RAIDed), running 
> Fedora Core 3) I changed BUFFER_SIZE in
> storage/ to 4096, 
> achieving about 30% better performance in indexing. 
> The search improvement 
> was smaller, enough smaller that it was on order
> what I thought my measurement 
> error was.  I tried values up to 64K, but there
> wasn't much change on my 
> system after 4K.
> --MDC
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