I'm going to install Linux on Lenovo B5400, which contains:

  • 500GB Hybrid SSHD with a 8 GB SSD and 500 GB HDD

Designing partitions for my 2 Linux distros was quite easy before, when I had only HDD. I always had:

  • 10GB for Linux distro (mounted as "/")
  • 10GB for another distro (again "/"; for another distro; for testing purposes or to assure continuity when switching distros)
  • 2GB for swap (used for both distros; no need to separate)
  • 300GB+ for "/home" (used for both distros; different usernames eliminates possible conflicts)

It's simple, isn't it? I would like to keep this approach, but I know that SSD has its own specificity - it prefers to be read, continuous writing may affect its life span. I don't want to kill SSD in a year, so I would like to move some system partitions to HDD in order to protect SSD. As far as I know /tmp is one of often read&written locations. How much space it needs? What else should be placed on HDD?

Or: how to design partitions to achieve exactly the same effect and to keep SSD as safe as possible?

I'd be grateful for your help.


In a hybrid SSHD all SSD access is integrated with the hard drive's firmware and should not be controlled by the OS. You will be safe to just use, partition and format your 500 GB hard drive and rely on the engineers of that drive to give you optimum performance from the integrated SSD cache.

Also see Is Seagate's new "FAST Factor Boot" technology compatible with Ubuntu? for a bit more background considerations.

  • Wow, that's not exactly an answer for my question, but it's for sure the answer for the question I should ask. SSD in B5400 is, indeed, something totally different then I thought. Thank you for the explanation. – kurp Oct 23 '14 at 20:10

If you're concerned about excessive read/write with the /tmp directory, you can make it so that /tmp is a filesystem stored exclusively in RAM as per this comment: How is the /tmp directory cleaned up?

I've never heard of permanent writing having adverse effects on an SSD - it's excessive writing that really has the effects.

In your case I think your best bet would be to put your main / onto the 8 GB SSD (as opposed to the 10GB you normally use) and put the rest of your partitions on your HDD, as you typically did.

  • Good point. I would even recommend that for systems which have / on a hard disk drive. – David Foerster Oct 23 '14 at 13:36
  • I'm sorry for mistake - I meant "continuous writing", not "permanent", of course. Regarding placing "/" on SSD, it was my first thought until I realized that some of system folders may be not only read, but also heavily overwritten when system is running. For that reason the solution with "/tmp" in RAM seems to be interesting. I'd dig deeper into this solution, thanks. – kurp Oct 23 '14 at 20:16

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