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gheorghe.petre2608 [04. [10p] Feedback]
ep:labs:03:contents:tasks:ex6 [2020/08/03 16:41] (current)
cristian.marin0805
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-==== 07. [10pFeedback ​====+==== 06. [30pRAM disk ====

-Please take minute ​to fill in the **[[https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfsMBl2EFu10jJG2qHEiSsR-qYr3wkzQPfDwjhChKnjRtDT_w/viewform | feedback form]]** for this lab.+Linux allows you to use part of your RAM as block device, viewing it as a hard disk partition. The advantage of using a RAM disk is the **extremely low latency** (even when compared ​to SSDs). The disadvantage is that all contents will be lost after a reboot.
+<note tip>
+There are two main types of RAM disks:
+  * **ramfs** - cannot be limited ​in size and will continue to grow until you run out of RAM. Its size can not be determined precisely with tools like **df**. Instead, you have to estimate it by looking at the "​cached"​ entry from **free**'​s output.
+  * **tmpfs** - newer than **ramfs**. Can set a size limit. Behaves exactly like a hard disk partition but can't be monitored through conventional means (i.e. **iostat**). Size can be precisely estimated using **df**.
+</​note>​
+=== [15p] Task A - Create RAM Disk ===
+
+Before getting started, let's find out the file system that our root partition uses. Run the following command (T - print file system type, h - human readable):
+
+<code bash>
+$df -Th +</code> +The result should look like this: +<​code>​ +Filesystem ​ ​Type ​ Size Used Avail Use% Mounted on +udev ​devtmpfs ​ 1.1G ​0 ​ 1.1G ​0% ​/dev +tmpfs tmpfs ​214M ​ 3.8M 210M 2% /run +/​dev/​sda1 ​ ext4 218G 4.1G 202G ​2% ​<- root partition +tmpfs tmpfs ​1.1G ​ 252K 1.1G ​1% ​/dev/shm +tmpfs tmpfs ​5.0M ​ 4.0K 5.0M ​1% ​/run/lock +tmpfs tmpfs ​1.1G ​ ​0 ​ 1.1G 0% /​sys/​fs/​cgroup +/​dev/​sda2 ​ ext4 923M ​73M ​ 787M 9% /boot +/​dev/​sda4 ​ ext4 266G ​62M ​ 253G 1% /home +</​code>​ + +From the results, we will assume in the following commands that the file system is **ext4**. If it's not your case, just replace with what you have: + +<code bash> +$ sudo mkdir /​mnt/​ramdisk
+$sudo mount -t tmpfs -o size=1G ext4 /mnt/​ramdisk +</​code>​ + +<​note>​ +If you want the RAM disk to persist after a reboot, you can add the following line to ///​etc/​fstab//​. Remember that its contents will still be lost. + +<​code>​ +tmpfs /​mnt/​ramdisk ​ ​tmpfs ​ ​rw,​nodev,​nosuid,​size=1G ​ ​0 ​ 0 +</​code>​ +</​note>​ + +That's it. We just created a 1Gb **tmpfs** ramdisk with an **ext4** file system and mounted it at ///​mnt/​ramdisk//​. Use **df** again to check this yourself. + +=== [15pTask B - Pipe View & RAM Disk === + +As we mentioned before, you can't get I/O statistics regarding ​**tmpfs** since it is not a real partition. One solution to this problem is using **pv** to monitor the progress of data transfer through a pipe. This is a valid approach only if we consider the disk I/O being the bottleneck. + +Next, we will generate 512Mb of random data and place it in ///​mnt/​ramdisk/​file//​ first and then in ///​home/​student/​file//​. The transfer is done using **dd** with 2048-byte blocks. + +<code bash> +$ pv /​dev/​urandom | dd of=/​mnt/​ramdisk/​rand ​ bs=2048 count=$((512 * 1024 * 1024 / 2048)) +$ pv /​dev/​urandom | dd of=/​home/​student/​rand bs=2048 count=\$((512 * 1024 * 1024 / 2048))
+</​code>​
+
+Look at the elapsed time and average transfer speedWhat conclusion can you draw?