Big swap on RedHat 6.1

I need a very large workspace in memory (above 1GB !)
For this pupose I need a big swap file or multiple swap parititions (about 10)
I know linux can handle maximum of 4 swap perititions.
How do I config linux to handle 10 swap par. ?
What's better in this case (file/mul. par.) ?
Any advice is welcome.
Who is Participating?
bughead1Connect With a Mentor Commented:
Well, I think the answer has to be to use fdisk and create a larger swap partition than Disk Druid will allow.

The new kernels allow larger swap partitions and Disk Druid hasn't kept up.
Are you sure about the maximal 4 swap partitions?

In general swap partitions are considered faster than swap files. If you are creating swap partitions, my advice is to distribute them to different physical drives. Additionally you should put them at the beginning of the drive -- read/write is faster there. One example:

  hda1 (priority 9)
  hda2 (priority 8)
  hdb1 (priority 9)
  hdb2 (priority 8)

if you need even more swap space, you can create swap files and give them a priority smaller than 8.

Hope this helps a bit
Why would you need 10? The old restriction of 127 Mb max per swapfile/partition dates back to the 2.0 kernel series and no longer applies if you run a 2.2 kernel. I can't remember what the new limit is but I think it is at least 1 Gb.

Partitions are faster than files because there is no filesytem layer needed for accessing them. And you will want to spread the IO over all harddisks. Therefore create one swap partition on every harddisk you have and give them an equal priority and equal size. This will maximize performance. If you have to use more then one swap partition per drive make sure the are lying next to eachother in the physical disk layout. It will also help to put swap between two busy partitions, say /usr and /home. The latter two considerations will minimize disk head seek times.

Performance will still stink though, especially with IDE disks.
Never miss a deadline with

The revolutionary project management tool is here!   Plan visually with a single glance and make sure your projects get done.

If you only have one disk, you might consider adding a relatively small second disk, say 1.6 GB and putting a couple of 800 MB swap partitions on it.  I think you will have to use fdisk, because disk druid (at least in RH 6.0) isn't updated to reflect the new swap partition sizes that are possible with the 2.2 kernels.

If you are stuck with IDE disks, it might also be worthwhile (if disk size permits) to spread your partitions about to reduce IO.  For example, hda could be partitioned /boot, /usr, swap, /usr/local  and hdb partitioned /, /usr/lib, swap and /home.  If each swap partition is only a tad more than half the size you need, the load will be spread between the disks.

Curious, what is this machine used for?
ygal02Author Commented:
Thank you all,
I'm getting a new disk tommorow and gonna try your advices.
bughead: the computer need to work with very big matrice on-line, that's the reason...
ygal02Author Commented:
Well, all the advices was good.
If it is possible I will grade the other answers also (if someone knows how).
All Courses

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.