Comparison of XFS and EXT4 under Linux with ZFS under OpenSolaris
„Which is the ‘best’ filesystem for …” is one of the most common questions from aspiring sysadmins. Here is jwb’s take on it:
EXT4 is fast for metadata operations, tar, untar, cpio, and postmark. EXT4 is much faster than the others under FFSB. EXT4 with hardware RAID and external journal device is ludicrously fast. EXT4 seems to have a bad interaction with software RAID, probably because mkfs fails to query the RAID layout when setting the filesystem parameters.
ZFS has excellent performance on metadata tests. ZFS has very bad sequential transfer with hardware RAID and appalling sequential transfer with software RAID. ZFS can copy the linux kernel source code in only 3 seconds! ZFS has equal latency for read and write requests under mixed loads, which is good.
XFS has good sequential transfer under Bonnie++. Oddly XFS has better sequential reads when using an external journal, which makes little sense. Is noatime broken on XFS? XFS is very slow on all the metadata tests. XFS takes the RAID layout into consideration and it performs well on randomio with hardware or software RAID.
Do keep in mind, that EXT4 is still marked ‘developmental’.