Partitions size for 80GB HDD and 2GB RAM

Alexander Rudyk (Akvelon) v-alrudy at
Thu Dec 20 11:26:44 PST 2007


Thank you for your extender answer. I have two more comments.

Did you consider /var as your email db partition. I really don’t
know how big will be my mail db on freebsd, but after half of year
I have about 4GB outlook mail db. So 1GB for /var might be not enough
in my case.

Having /home as part of /usr is the good point. But in case of backup
it make sense to have /home as separate partition. What you think about this?


-----Original Message-----
From: Nikola Lečić [mailto:nikola.lecic at]
Sent: Thursday, December 20, 2007 10:57 AM
To: Alexander Rudyk (Akvelon)
Cc: FreeBSD-questions at
Subject: Re: Partitions size for 80GB HDD and 2GB RAM

On Wed, 19 Dec 2007 17:17:50 -0800
"Alexander Rudyk (Akvelon)" <v-alrudy at> wrote:

> Hi all
> I am planning to install FreeBSD 6.2 on my dell laptop with 80Gb HDD
> and 2GB RAM. FreeBSD will be the only OS on the laptop. Laptop will
> be used to web development (RubyOnRails), entertaiment (photo, music,
> video), web browsing and emailing, so no server side task will be
> handled.
> How you suggest to split 80GB between partitions to solve all laptop
> tasks. Here is partitions:
> /root
> /var
> /usr
> /home
> /swap

Hi Alexander,

You can find the recommendations regarding partition sizes in
"Allocating Disk Space" chapter of the FreeBSD Handbook

This means that your partition layout should be like this:

/       512M
swap   4096M (2x RAM)
/tmp    512M
/var   1024M
/usr    rest

/var's size depends, among other things, on how many logs you want to
keep there (where they live by default); since your machine will not be
a server, 512M should be ok. Please note that /var/db/, the default
place for info about ports installed, occupies roughly 200M or more.

/usr depends on how many applications you need to run. Please note
that /usr is also the default place where applications will be compiled
(inside /usr/ports) and where a lot of distfiles (sources) or
(precompiled) packages will be stored, so huge upgrades can take a lot
of place. [Some applications need ~500M (Firefox), ~1G (gcc42) or
several gigabytes (OpenOffice) to compile. Distfiles can use 1-3G,
depending on cleaning policy you choose.] Therefore, since you have 80G,
it's not a bad idea to use /usr for /home as well (i.e. to have /usr
only; home will be /usr/home, symlinked from /home). Otherwise, you can
easily encounter too much (wasted) or too little free space on /usr.

I've recently configured a laptop with the aforementioned partition
sizes (with smaller swap).

(Besides this, don't forget to read about the difference between
"dedicated" and "sliced" disks in the Handbook.)

Nikola Lečić :: Никола Лечић

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