Unix & Linux Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of Linux, FreeBSD and other Un*x-like operating systems. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have 53 gigabytes that need formating into /root, /swap, /usr/, /var, /home, and /tmp. If there's any help what is the best space allocation? Please let me know.

share|improve this question
What will you use it for? For example, a server (small /home, big /srv) would be much different from a desktop (big /home). – tjameson Nov 25 '12 at 7:03
for small machines RAM < 2GB swap=size(RAM) else swap=2GB and for larger machine RAM < 8GB swap=size(RAM) else swap=8GB – harish.venkat Nov 25 '12 at 7:32
up vote 2 down vote accepted

For my 40GB SSD drive, I partition the swap partition to be the same as my memory (i.e., I have 2GB of RAM, so is the swap partition.) I reserve about 10GB for /root, and the rest goes to /home. For your case, I think:

  • Swap partition as said
  • 14GB for /
  • The rest for /home

I personally think partitioning for /usr, /var, and /tmp is too much trouble.

share|improve this answer
I'll try this out. Thanks. – Jahaic Rigeck Nov 25 '12 at 21:40

Assuming this is for desktop use, I would do something like this:

  • /boot- 300MB
  • /- 20gb (readonly if I want a faster boot, but it's usually annoying)
  • swap- 2gb
  • /home- rest of the drive

I like to keep a separate /boot, but you don't have to.

For a server setup, I would do something like this:

  • /- 20gb (mounted read only)
  • /root- 5gb
  • swap- 2gb
  • /srv- 5gb (read only, extended partition)
  • /home- the rest (extended partition)
  • /var- 5gb (extended partition)

I store all of my server stuff (web pages, etc) in /srv and leave /home for the bigger stuff. I keep /srv separate so I can reinstall / without losing my webserver data.

I would also mount /tmp as a tmpfs.

It really depends on the use case for the machine.

share|improve this answer

Consider using a more modern filesystem like btrfs which, with its subvolume feature, eliminates the need to do this sort of planning at all.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.