I'm switching to XFS for my disk file systems

Silicon Graphics created XFS in 1993 to serve as the default file system for their IRIX operating system. I really don't like the way BTRFS interacts with docker, so this was the driver for my switch. That and noticing how fast it was on spinning rust HDDs. And the fact that Red Hat Enterprise Linux uses it as its default file system. That was strongly influential in my decision since it made me realise it was next-to-native on Linux, which uses ext4 by default.

Having used an SGI Indy workstation in my youth I trusted Silicon Graphics to deliver something with taste and high performance. XFS excels in the execution of parallel IO due to its design, which is based on allocation groups and enabling multiple concurrent writes. The aim: extreme scalability, bandwidth, size of files and itself able to span multiple physical storage devices. With features like delayed allocation, and online defragmentation it seems like the fastest thing about.

After a stint trying out ext4, BTRFS, and then ZFS stripes, raid z2, presently I am installing XFS everywhere at the moment. On my NVMe ext can delete a root folder at 224 kilofiles per second, but this is a very fast m.2 drive. On my slower Samsung SSD running XFS I can stat faster at 256 kilofiles per second!


Linux Mint root partition with 1,680,820 files achieves 224,828 stat/second.

real    0m7.476s
user    0m2.893s
sys     0m5.253s


XFS Kubuntu Linux root partition with 573,884 files achieves 256,198

real    0m2.242s
user    0m0.872s
sys     0m1.581s