Apr 27 2009
Brought to you by: James
Have you ever wondered, “What is File System Journaling”? Don’t worry, most of us have. File System Journaling was originally a feature only available to the server world. Finally, File System Journaling has made it to our favorite home computers.
Have you ever wondered why web servers seem to be in 100% working order after a crash/restart? File System Journaling is the answer. FSJ keeps a constant record of changes made to the volume after each startup. Should an unforeseen event occur, such as a power failure or kernel panic, FSJ will return your HFS+ volume to its last know “good” state.
FSJ keeps you up and running against most unforeseen accidents. The effect of restoring the drive to its last known “good” state is hardly noticeable (except for the fact that everything works perfectly). This effect also helps prevent drive errors by removing any partial data written at the time of the unexpected shutdown. The record that FSJ keeps also helps to progressively speed up start time, and uses very little disk space.
Are you in OSX 10.3 or higher? If you are, have you noticed that your drive does not need to be repaired after an unexpected shutdown? Have you noticed that your startup has been getting faster since you installed 10.3 or 10.4? Both of these are due to that fact that FSJ is enabled on 10.3′s and 10.4′s installation.
How do you enable FSJ in 10.3 or higher? All you have to do is restart from your 10.3 disk, open Disk Utility (under the ‘Installer’ menu), select your drive, and hit the ‘Enable Journaling” button. If you don’t have 10.3 or higher, just download and run Journalizer (note: FSJ requires 10.2.2 or later). If you have a new hard drive that you want to set up with FSJ active, just choose to format it was “HFS+ (Journaled)”.
Keep in mind, that if you’re a fan of using fsck, you’ll have to enter ‘/sbin/fsck -fy‘ instead. But trust me, you won’t find any errors. Have fun with FSJ!