Mother board compatibility and CF card usage as main storage device for small DNS server

Brian A. Seklecki (CFI NOC) seklecki at
Thu Sep 30 14:18:17 UTC 2010

On 9/30/2010 4:11 AM, Kaya Saman wrote:
> I mean for a DNS server (all be it a small one) is it wise to use
> compact flash as storage??

For our GSLB DNS Slaves, we boot embedded/low power (or even VMs these 
days) systems with CF images off of flash, keep a shadow copy of /etc 
around, and program all file systems with R/W activity 
(/var/chroot/named/cache, where all zone files are fetched from Master 
NS) on MFS partitions, eliminating almost all write operations to the CF 

No swap, and RD / (/var, etc.) and MFS /usr extracted from a tarball via 
modified rc(8).  /shadow is mounted noatime.

Minimal writes to flash.  The systems boot in about 30 seconds.

We actually run NetBSD, but we've done similar models on FreeBSD.

No CF card failures reported in five (5) years.  We use Transcend 
Industrial series.

Where it gets risky is if you just plain install a live functional 
FreeBSD on CF.  A million inodes for /usr/src and CF is about as fast as 
an ESDI hard drive in an IBM XT.


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