Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

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

As a backup, I want to rsync a system partition to a loop mounted file (which is stored in Dropbox). The size of the partition is ca. 2GB and growing, and the backup is scheduled to happen once per day.

Which file system is good for this purpose?

Encryption, compression, or versioning is not wanted.

share|improve this question

I assume you have read the usual answer: and missed tribal knowledge like "what is mainstream and what do I care about".

You want the freedom to have files greater than 2GB. You may not need it today, but soon maybe. This means FAT and ISO9660 are excluded. You may want to change distribution later on so ReiserFS is excluded as it is not supported by all distros. BTRFS is young, unstable and hereby excluded. Cluster file systems bring functionality that you do not need. What stays is ext2, ext3, ext4 and XFS. I personally know of one (fixed) data corruption bug in XFS and of zero bugs in ext* so I would go for ext4. ext4 allows bigger files than ext3 which you do not need, but ext4 will be mainstream, not ext3 so I would choose ext4 as file system. To create it use the command

share|improve this answer
FAT and ISO9660 are excluded because they don't allow me to back up all the attributes used on the source system (ext4). 2GiB file limit is not an issue, by the way. Only the total size of the archive file will be larger than 2GiB, and that's stored on ext4. – feklee Dec 28 '13 at 10:55

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.