Fedora Developers Evaluating Compression Options For Btrfs-By-Default Proposal

Written by Michael Larabel in Fedora on 8 July 2020 at 06:53 AM EDT. 21 Comments
The proposal for using Btrfs by default on the Fedora desktop is gaining a fair amount of traction and interest from the community and could possibly move ahead but further testing and decisions are still to be made.

First of all, today marks a Fedora Btrfs test day for those wanting to help in evaluating this change proposal. Check it out if you have spare system(s) and interested in helping make the decision whether Fedora desktop spins should transition from EXT4 to Btrfs by default.

One of the other items still being sorted out for the Btrfs change proposal is whether to enable compression by default and if so which compression algorithm/settings to use. The Btrfs compression option is now being brought up for discussion with this mailing list thread.

Enabling Btrfs transparent file-system compression is desired for at least some directories like the common log directories and VM image directories. The mainline Linux kernel supports Zlib, LZO, and Zstd compression options. The most likely option for Fedora's Btrfs default compression scheme would likely be Zstd given its performance benefits but then it's also still a matter of what compression level to utilize.

It's quite interesting to see the Btrfs proposal for Fedora finally gaining steam in 2020 and will be fun to see the outcome, a decade or so after there was first talk of going to Btrfs by default on the distribution.
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