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Speeding up install on usb.....


bytedeez
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I recently had a hdd go out, instead of running a live usb, I decided to install ubuntu on a kingston 64gb usb 3.0 flash drive.

I noticed a huge difference in speed compared to running ubuntu live from usb, the install is significantly slower.

does anyone have a reason why this is and a way to fix it?

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USB is really good at long, sustained, sequential transfers. I'm guessing you're accessing lots of tiny little files scattered all over the drive which rather tanks the performance.

Try grabbing a big file and transferring it to the drive. See how fact that is. If this also performs like crap, check out the specs for that USB 3.0 flash drive - many only have the interface, but not the hardware (=sufficiently high performance memory) to back it up. That's marketing for you...

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USB 3 is fast, but are you sure the port you plugged it into is configured for 3.0 vs 2.0? Cooper makes a good point, as I have a 32GB thumb drive I shutter files from one machine to the other with, but I noticed, my PC that has a 3.0 drive works faster on the back ports, than from the front ones, mainly because the way the machine is built, not all the ports are 3.0 capable. The front ones are extra ports added from cables to the mobo vs buil tin ports on the backplane, and they only do 2.0. Mine are also colored different on the rear than the front, i guess mainly highlighting which are 3.0 based. In ether case, I noticed the drive performs faster with larger single files than with a folder full of files such as music or images, vs say, a single file or compressed archive.

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I am using a laptop and 3.0 ports but I don't think I explained myself well enough.

You see I have a 8gb usb 3.0 flash drive that is being used as a bootable live ubuntu install.

I also have usb 3.0 64gb boot bootable usb drive but instead of it being used as a live install, it is a full persistent install and is being used in place of burned out hard drive. As in my 64gb drive is my hard drive.

My question is why is the live install much faster than the persistent install.

If both drives are usb 3.0 and I am using usb 3.0 ports and is their any way I can speed up my persistent ubuntu install.

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The live install is running entirely in RAM, and isn't really using the USB other than to boot the OS. The persistent install is actually using the USB drive as a 'hard drive' to save settings and files you create. As mentioned above by Cooper, USB isn't really meant for this.

The best way to speed up a persistent install is to use an actual hard drive, whether it's solid state or magnetic.

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My question is why is the live install much faster than the persistent install.

This question can be rephrased as "Why is my Fiat 500 slower than my Ferrari Testarossa? They're both red Italian cars, their tires are made of the same rubber and they travel the exact same roads..."

Run the test I suggested and you'll see.

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You can try setting up a RAMDISK as a swap file,and loading the OS as a live boot, WITH persistence, but the install process is a bit different. You'd need to create an install image and move it to the USB drive as an img file, tell linux to boot this into ram, and the file system will need to reside on the USB drive for saving changes. You can should also change any swap files that were on the drive to be ramdisks as well,which will help, but a full install to USB without booting to ram will be much slower. The only issue with Live + persistence is that the OS, is a static "img" file, and changes need to be made on another dedicated system and then copied over/reimaged to the drive as the new img file to the drive if I'm not mistaken. There are some links on how to do this with Debian on google, and they have pre-made images for this, but not sure how you go about it with other flavors that don't provide .img files other than, install on something, and make your own img file to tell linux to boot it into ram.

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