View Full Version : Installing Fedora onto a SSD with / and /home on btrfs

15th November 2017, 04:32 PM
Why btrfs? Well, supposedly, btrfs does fewer I/Os to the SSD than does ext4. In theory, and in practice, fewer I/Os to an SSD means prolonged life of the SSD.

From the beginning of Fedora 26, when I did have the SSD formatted as btrfs for / and for /home, gnome-shell would crash often when logging into the system after a power off period, or on relogging into the system. Some extensions would crash on btrfs during the extension's installation. The weeks between October 3 to November 10, saw a very large number of glib and gnome-shell updates.
I am now able, with one or two reboots, (should not have to reboot), install any extension onto a "btrfs only" system. The following is copy/pasted from the bug report.

I discovered that if I put a critical file onto an ext4 system, I can do a clean installation of all Gnome extensions without having to reboot. And that crashing ceased for the most part. That file is


I relocated that file to an ext4 file system using a soft link even though all Fedora partitions save one, on my SSD are btrfs formatted.

My steps were simple because, on Fedora, /boot is an ext4 file system
As root.

1) mkdir -p /boot/leslie/.config/dconf

Note /boot is an ext4 file system thanks to grub2 requirements

2) cp -ra /home/leslie/.config/dconf/user /boot/leslie.config/dconf

3) mv /home/leslie/.config/dconf /home/leslie/.config/dconf.bak #backup just in case.

4) ln -s /boot/leslie/.config/dconf /home/leslie/.config/dconf

5) chown -R leslie:leslie /boot/leslie/

6) Log into my Leslie logon. Success. No gnome shell crashes since.

Hopefully, Gnome 3.26.2 with btrfs support may not require the above steps. 3.26.2 will probably appear in Fedora 27 soon.

15th November 2017, 08:18 PM

Glad to read that you've found a solution to your crashes!

15th November 2017, 08:51 PM
Yes, I started with frustration last June by reporting crashes. Gnome first level support was blaming the extensions and it made no sense. Extensions worked with other than btrfs. As the bug reports mounted with every crash, with my testing using the regular f26 and the f27 beta, the number of reports was mounting. And as I noted, it seems as when go-live date approached that the gnome libs and programs began to see maintenance.

And since the past two weeks, with my above patch in place, there has not been a gnome-shell crash. I have pasted what I did into the bugzilla bug report, and hopefully, if / when there is an update to this bug report by a maintainer, or with gnome 3.26.2, I will revert my patch and test 3.26.2.

Its been fun, and along the way I dug into logic and code, and learned a fair amount. Would I do it again? I don't know. My testing and experimenting took many days of 4 hours per day.