Need a filesystem with "unlimited" inodes

Dan Nelson dnelson at
Tue Jun 9 04:04:47 UTC 2009

In the last episode (Jun 08), Kelly Jones said:
> What UFS-like filesystem has unlimited inodes, but is a drop-in
> replacement for ext3, and is fairly easy to configure?
> Is UFS2 no longer considered the "best" general-use filesystem?
> Reason I ask: I'm going to create many small (~1K) files on a 100G
> disk and thus need at least 100M inodes.
> "newfs -i" maxes out at ~52M inodes (862 groups * 60864 inodes =~ 52M
> inodes):
> # newfs -N -i 1 /dev/da1;: same results as -i 2048
> /dev/da1: 102400.0MB (209715200 sectors) block size 16384, fragment size
>         2048 using 862 cylinder groups of 118.88MB, 7608 blks, 60864
>         inodes.
> I realize I can use "f 512 -b 4096" to get 200M+ inodes, but I'm willing
> to experiment w/ a new filesystem, provided it behaves mostly like UFS. 
> Thoughts?

At this point you're sort of out of the general-use category :)  You want
ZFS.  Or rather, you don't want to try and fsck a UFS filesystem with 200M
inodes.  The three drawbacks I can think of to ZFS are it's hard to boot
from (although you probably aren't booting from da1), it requires more
memory than UFS, and there is no ACL support at the moment (not that many
people used the ACL support for UFS).  If you're already on an amd64 system
with 4GB or more RAM you'll be fine.

	Dan Nelson
	dnelson at

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