Creating Filesystems

As you've seen in the preceding sections, the choice of filesystems provided by Linux is quite large, and they all perform relatively well. A journaling filesystem is always recommended when quick restart times and maximized data integrity are significant factors, and ReiserFS, EXT3, JFS, and XFS are all excellent filesystems to consider. In enterprise environments, optimizing data access and creation times are especially significant features, with both XFS and JFS providing potential performance advantages, especially when creating large files. For home users, getting the most out of your storage devices is often a primary concern, in which case ReiserFS is a good choice. If you want to migrate existing EXT2 filesystems to Linux or are simply concerned about having the richest possible set of diagnostic and debugging tools, the EXT3 filesystem is probably your best choice.

Those of you familiar with other forms of Unix will be expecting to find mkfs scripts to create new filesystems. As Linux is a form of Unix, it does indeed use the notion of mkfs to create new filesystems. On Linux systems, the mkfs program is actually a wrapper for filesystem-specific versions of mkfs, which have names such as mkfs.ext2, mkfs.reiserfs, and so on. When you execute the mkfs command, you must specify the type of filesystem that you want to create using the -t (type) option, which the mkfs command then uses to locate the version of the mkfs command that will create the specified type of filesystem. The following list shows the filesystem-specific versions of mkfs that are found on a typical SUSE system:

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