Checking filesystems periodically

Daniel Drake dsd at
Fri May 4 09:41:40 EDT 2012

On Fri, May 4, 2012 at 2:55 AM, Anish Mangal <anish at> wrote:
> Hi,
> I am curious to know why we are not periodically checking file systems
> after every N boots on the XO laptop.

Historically, we have used a filesystem without a checker (jffs2).

Now that we use ext* on newer laptops, there are a few reasons:

Firstly, its non-trivial, due to the design/setup of our initramfs and

Secondly, the user experience:

> The biggest reason I can assume is because every Nth time the system
> will appear to boot very slowly to the user thus creating the
> impression that something is wrong.

Until F17 we haven't had a good way of communicating this via the boot
animation. Now we can do that easily but it lacks implementation.

Thirdly, fsck is not magic. It cannot detect/repair all corruption. As
far as I know, we have not yet found a case of corruption which can be
meaningfully fixed by fsck. We did do quite a bit of testing for this
at an earlier point.

> However, in light of the fact that XO's often operate in harsh
> environments and (probably) greater possibility of hardware failure
> because of that, would it be a good idea in doing so?

Despite all the above, yes, it would be a good idea, it's something
we'll hopefully get around to at some point. Your help implementing it
is welcome.


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