Linux Developers Eye Orphaning The JFS File-System

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Storage on 13 January 2023 at 09:11 AM EST. 59 Comments
Following the Linux kernel deprecating the ReiserFS file-system and with plans to drop the kernel driver in 2025, the next file-system target being evaluated for whether it should stick around the kernel is the Journaled File-System, JFS.

IBM developed the JFS file-system originally in the 90's for AIX and the second-generation implementation then ported to Linux after it was made open-source. JFS has been around for Linux the past 2+ decades going back to the Linux 2.4.18 era. But it's not widely-used, has never been used by default as the root file-system for any prominent Linux distribution, and options like EXT4 / XFS / Btrfs / F2FS have long proven superior.

There isn't much use out of the Journaled File-System on Linux and seldom sees any new improvements to the file-system kernel driver. Longtime kernel developer Christoph Hellwig has now raised the idea of orphaning JFS:
"A while ago we've deprecated reiserfs and scheduled it for removal. Looking into the hairy metapage code in JFS I wonder if we should do the same. While JFS isn't anywhere as complicated as reiserfs, it's also way less used and never made it to be the default file system in any major distribution. It's also looking pretty horrible in xfstests, and with all the ongoing folio work and hopeful eventual phaseout of buffer head based I/O path it's going to be a bit of a drag. (Which also can be said for many other file system, most of them being a bit simpler, though)."

Barring any notable objections of continued JFS file-system usage paired with modern kernels, it's likely that JFS will be deprecated and eventually removed from the kernel source tree.
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