Btrfs LZO Compression Performance
Written by Michael Larabel in Software on 18 March 2011. Page 4 of 4. 20 Comments

Using LZO/Zlib compression led to the performance being degraded when dealing with multi-threaded random writes of large files.

With the AIO-Stress we have a test where using compression leads to better performance, but where the LZO compression performance falls behind Zlib.

Overall, using transparent LZO compression with Btrfs is faster than Gzip for most scenarios, but there is also slightly higher CPU usage in using this algorithm (another article will look at the file-system CPU usage). Be forewarned, if enabling LZO compression, you may then run into problems if trying to mount the Btrfs file-system on a pre-2.6.38 kernel.

These test results are also available on

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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