File Systems, Disk Defragmentation and more.
Recently I have been reading articles about the new Btrfs and its benchmarks for the Linux kernel. I have also been reading other articles relating to file system maintenance. At this point, regarding the article on file system maintenance, I am going to have to say “who cares.” According to the VAR Guy, Diskeeper is considering supporting Mac OS X and Linux. At this point in computing this support becomes increasingly insignificant and I will tell you why. Diskeepers’ target market caters to the hosting and virtualization end of computing. Their idea is to offer disk defragmentation software. But why? I can see how this may be optimal in a Microsoft Windows environment as the NTFS file system is a horribly designed file system.
Let us say that very soon, people are going to start trusting Btrfs. We know that Btrfs’ primary focus is server side hosting. It comes equipped with its own defragmentation tools that run both online and offline. So why would I need support for anything else? XFS has been out for many years and has gained the trust of storage administrators worldwide as a stable, excellent performing and extremely scalable file system solution. XFS offers both online and offline defragmentation. AdvFS supports online defragmentation and recently I have even heard proposals for an Ext4-fs online defragmentation implementation.
My point is: an intelligent storage administrator will not utilize a file system that is not appropriate for his/her environment. This may end up being a losing battle for Diskeepers; if they venture outside of the Microsoft world and especially into the world of GNU/Linux.
Times are changing and what is classified as mid-size to enterprise class computing is not what it used to be. File storage and virtualization concepts have evolved where it becomes increasingly difficult for 3rd parties to step in and provide additional tool sets to reap from the glory that the developers and maintainers of such solutions deserve. The communities developing the latest and greatest solutions are finally realizing that to provide a complete solution is the only way to go.
Also who knows what will become of other 3rd party utilities such as file shredders over snapshot-enabled file systems and volumes. My advice to Diskeeper is: “Stick with what you know.”