Huge filesystem overhead on USB thumb drive?

Alan McKinnon alan at
Mon Apr 10 09:34:55 UTC 2006

On Monday 10 April 2006 10:06, Chanchao wrote:
> I have an ext3 filesystem on a partition of a USB thumbdrive. I use
> this to keep my files and settings when booting the live cd.
> (Persistent).
> When I boot normally (live cd, not persistent) and right click the
> casper-rw partition and go 'properties', I get around 60 MB total.
> However when I check in GParted, I note that almost double that is
> used! Indeed I run out of space (filesystem full) so I had to
> increase the size.
> But... Why is there such a huge overhead?  I did do an 'fsck.ext3'
> but it reported no problems.
> Anyone know what's going on and how I can get space back? Should I
> be using a different file system?

ext3 seems like overkill on a thumbdrive, you are probably better off 
with ext2 (no journal). The usage pattern on a thumbdrive seldom 
justifies the use of a journal.

The lowest overhead of all is vfat, especially if it's just a bunch of 
data files you are storing and have no pressing need for file 

If only you and dead people understand hex, 
how many people understand hex?

Alan McKinnon
alan at linuxholdings dot co dot za
+27 82, double three seven, one nine three five

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