The Good & Bad Of ZFS + HAMMER File-Systems On BSD

Written by Michael Larabel in BSD on 2 January 2015 at 09:17 PM EST. 42 Comments
ZFS is commonly viewed as the next-generation, high-end file-system for BSD systems while DragonFlyBSD defaults to their own HAMMER file-system designed by Matthew Dillon. For those wondering though how ZFS compares to HAMMER, here's a comparison.

Posted yesterday to the FreeBSD Forums is an interesting thread about ZFS vs. HAMMER, with the original poster providing a lot of his own opinions and since then many other users have jumped in too, which makes for an interesting ready. The ZFS comparison is done to HAMMER1 and not HAMMER2, the next-generation DragonFlyBSD file-system that's still under development by Matthew Dillon.

Among the pros of ZFS are it's self-healing, writable clones, fully journaling system using ZFS snapshots, compression, and portable storage. Among the viewed HAMMER positives are the focus on data integrity, great SQL database performance, lower RAM requirements, supports pseudo file-systems, fully open-source with a BSD license, etc. Of course, with each also comes various cons.

For BSD users interested in comparing HAMMER and ZFS, see this forum thread.
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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 20,000 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, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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