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My system (linux 3.16, ntfs-3g 2013.1.13AR.1) has 2 NTFS partitions and 2 ext4. I have 2 hard drives, each of them has 1 ntfs and 1 ext4.

I've noticed that high inpit-ouput on NTFS partitions causes high cpu load, PC becomes unusable. For example when I download something on speed 10 Mb/s - mount.ntfs consumes 99% CPU. The same happens with regular updatedb process. Is it normal behavior for linux?

Mine fstab NTFS partitions: sda2 and sdb2. Ext4: sda6 and sdb3

# /etc/fstab: static file system information.
#
# Use 'blkid' to print the universally unique identifier for a
# device; this may be used with UUID= as a more robust way to name devices
# that works even if disks are added and removed. See fstab(5).
#
# <file system> <mount point>   <type>  <options>       <dump>  <pass>
# / was on /dev/sda6 during installation
UUID=9bf161aa-d5f1-4c73-8a57-2b1dba6354bd /               ext4    errors=remount-ro 0       1
# /home was on /dev/sdb3 during installation
UUID=d278e7cd-e55a-43ef-bf1f-8c27a17dfcd9 /home           ext4    defaults        0       2
# swap was on /dev/sda5 during installation
UUID=b158ddad-254d-4ec9-ac69-f7fcb9c8fe30 none            swap    sw              0       0

/home/yanpas/.D/Музыка/                   /home/yanpas/Музыка/    none    bind    0 0
/home/yanpas/.D/Картинки/                 /home/yanpas/Изображения/Картинки    none    bind    0 0
/home/yanpas/.D/Фотографии/               /home/yanpas/Изображения/Фотографии/    none    bind    0 0
/home/yanpas/.D/Прочее/Видео/             /home/yanpas/Видео/    none    bind    0 0
/home/yanpas/.D/Фильмы/             /home/yanpas/Видео/Фильмы/    none    bind    0 0
/home/yanpas/.D/Прочее/Инструкции/        /home/yanpas/Документы/Инструкции/    none    bind    0 0

/dev/disk/by-uuid/B6EE4E6CEE4E2549 /mnt/B6EE4E6CEE4E2549 auto nosuid,nodev,nofail,noauto 0 0
/dev/disk/by-uuid/68DEC1ADDEC173BA /mnt/68DEC1ADDEC173BA auto nosuid,nodev,nofail,noauto 0 0
/dev/disk/by-uuid/244E67674E67312A /home/yanpas/.D auto nosuid,noatime,nodev,nofail,uid=1000 0 0

1 Answer 1

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NTFS and exFAT are both slow in Linux; one reason is that those filesystems are supported through the fuse layer only, which introduces considerable overhead, so it can't help being slower than a filesystem that is actually part of the kernel.

Another reason is the filesystem itself. It's difficult to implement proprietary filesystems correctly and efficiently. Even if you figure out how something works, sometimes there are copyright/license/patent issues, so for some filesystems you only get sub-par implementations.

Out of the Windows filesystems, FAT32 should have best performance in Linux. I don't have any benchmarks, though, and you'd have to live with its rather dated limitations.

Faster alternatives for NTFS are available, but it's a commercial product.

http://www.tuxera.com/community/open-source-ntfs-3g/

A high-performance alternative, called Tuxera NTFS is available for embedded devices and Mac OS X

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  • this answer is dated, Linux has built-in support for exFAT since ~2020 ( kernel 5.7 ) which may be a good alternative to vfat / ntfs-3g / exfat-fuse Jun 16, 2021 at 10:30

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