Linux Tactic

Mastering Btrfs Mount Options: A Comprehensive Guide

Do you need to mount a Btrfs filesystem with custom mount options? Whether you’re using a command-line interface or /etc/fstab files, there are a few things to consider before starting.

In this article, we’ll cover all the essential information you need to know to mount your Btrfs filesystem with the necessary options.

Mounting Btrfs with Command-Line Interface

If you prefer using a command-line interface, you can manually mount your Btrfs filesystem with any custom mount options you require. Here are the steps:


Create a directory where you want the Btrfs filesystem to be mounted. For example, let’s assume you want it mounted at “/media/btrfs”.


# sudo mkdir /media/btrfs


2. Use the mount command to mount the filesystem.

Note that you need to specify the Btrfs filesystem type and any other mount options you want. For example, if you want to mount a Btrfs filesystem with the “noatime” option, the command would look like this:


# sudo mount -t btrfs -o noatime /dev/sdX /media/btrfs


where “/dev/sdX” is the device file of your Btrfs partition.

3. To unmount the filesystem, use the umount command followed by the mount point.

For example:


# sudo umount /media/btrfs


You can use the “mount” command without any arguments to check which filesystems are currently mounted in your system. Mounting Btrfs with /etc/fstab File

If you’re looking for an automated solution, you can set up your /etc/fstab file to mount the Btrfs filesystem with custom mount options during boot time.

Here’s how:

1. Get the UUID of your Btrfs partition using the blkid command:


# sudo blkid /dev/sdX


where “/dev/sdX” is the device file of your Btrfs partition.

2. Add an entry to /etc/fstab using the UUID and any custom mount options you want.

For example, suppose you want to mount the Btrfs partition with “noatime” and “compress=zstd” options at “/media/btrfs”:


UUID= /media/btrfs btrfs noatime,compress=zstd 0 0


3. Save and close the /etc/fstab file.

4. Test the changes by running the mount command:


# sudo mount -a



To unmount the filesystem, use the umount command, followed by the mount point. For example:


# sudo umount /media/btrfs


It’s essential to ensure there is no syntax error in your /etc/fstab file.

Incorrect entries in the /etc/fstab file may cause boot failures or errors while mounting the filesystem. Where to Put Btrfs Mount Options?

When mounting Btrfs filesystems, it’s essential to decide where to specify the mount options. You can provide custom mount options using either the command-line interface or in the /etc/fstab file.

Here are some points to consider when making this decision:

– Command-line interface: using the command-line interface to mount filesystems is more convenient for one-off, temporary mounts. However, if you need to mount the same filesystem with the same custom mount options repeatedly, it’s best to set them in the /etc/fstab file.

– /etc/fstab file: using the /etc/fstab file to mount filesystems is more convenient if you need to mount the same filesystem with the same custom mount options repeatedly. It’s especially useful if you have multiple systems that need to use the same mount options.

In conclusion, mounting Btrfs filesystems with custom mount options is relatively straightforward. Whether you prefer using the command-line interface or the /etc/fstab file, it’s essential to ensure the correct syntax and device files are used when specifying custom mount options.

Btrfs is a modern and efficient file system that provides several useful mount options to optimize its performance and functionality. In this article, we’ll look at some of the essential Btrfs mount options and how you can use them to enhance your file system experience.


ACL stands for Access Control Lists, which enable fine-grained access permissions for files and directories. By default, Btrfs supports ACLs, so you can enable or disable this feature using the “acl” or “noacl” mount options.

For example, to enable ACL for a Btrfs filesystem, you can use the following command:


# mount -o acl /dev/sdX /mnt/btrfs


Autodefrag and Noautodefrag

Btrfs uses a copy-on-write mechanism to manage its data. This means that when new data is written to the file system, it is stored in new blocks, while the old blocks remain unchanged.

Over time, these unused blocks accumulate, leading to fragmentation, which can degrade the performance of the file system. To address this, Btrfs provides the “autodefrag” mount option, which automatically defragments the file system periodically.

To disable this feature, use the “noautodefrag” mount option.

Compress and Compress-force

Btrfs supports several compression algorithms that help reduce the size of data stored on the file system. By default, Btrfs does not enable compression.

To enable it, use the “compress” mount option followed by the compression algorithm you prefer, such as zstd or lzo. Alternatively, you can use the “compress-force” mount option to enable compression for all files, including those that may not be suitable for compression.

Subvol and Subvolid

Btrfs supports the concept of subvolumes, which are logical partitions within the file system that can be mounted and unmounted independently. These subvolumes appear as directories within the main file system.

To mount a specific subvolume, you can use the “subvol” mount option, followed by the name of the subvolume. Alternatively, you can use the “subvolid” mount option, followed by the ID of the subvolume.


Btrfs allows you to create a multi-device file system, which can span several physical disks or partitions. To mount such a file system, use the “device” mount option, followed by the list of device files or UUIDs that make up the file system.

For example:


# mount -o device=/dev/sdX,/dev/sdY /mnt/btrfs



Btrfs supports various RAID levels and redundancy options to ensure data integrity even in the event of device failure. In degraded mode, Btrfs can continue to function after the failure of one or more devices, albeit with reduced performance and data redundancy.

To mount a degraded file system, use the “degraded” mount option.


Btrfs uses a transactional approach to write data to the file system. By default, these transactions are committed every 30 seconds.

To change the commit interval, use the “commit” mount option followed by the desired interval in seconds. For example:


# mount -o commit=60 /dev/sdX /mnt/btrfs



Btrfs provides specific mount options to optimize performance when using Solid State Drives (SSDs). The “ssd” mount option enables optimization for an SSD file system, while the “nossd” mount option disables these optimizations.

SSD_Spread and NOSSD_Spread

Apart from the “ssd” and “nossd” mount options, Btrfs also provides the additional “ssd_spread” and “nossd_spread” options to help optimize continuous chunks on an SSD file system.

Discard and Nodiscard

SSDs support a feature called TRIM that enables them to free up space that is no longer needed by the file system. Btrfs supports this feature through the “discard” mount option.

To disable this feature, use the “nodiscard” option.


The “norecovery” mount option ensures that Btrfs never attempts data recovery, even when the file system is corrupted. This feature is useful when you want to prioritize performance over data redundancy.

Usebackuproot and Nousebackuproot

The Btrfs file system has two tree roots, one primary and one backup. In the event of corruption, Btrfs can recover your file system using the backup tree root.

The “usebackuproot” mount option forces Btrfs to use the backup tree root during recovery, while the “nousebackuproot” option disables this function. Space_cache, Space_cache=Version, Nospace_cache, and Clear_cache

Btrfs uses a free-space cache to speed up allocation of free space in the file system.

By default, this cache is enabled and stored in memory. However, you can control the behavior of this feature by using the “space_cache”, “space_cache=version”, “nospace_cache”, and “clear_cache” mount options.


When data is added or removed from a Btrfs file system, it may become unbalanced, leading to performance degradation. Btrfs automatically rebalances the file system to ensure an even distribution of data.

To skip this automatic balance operation, use the “skip_balance” mount option.

Datacow and Nodatacow

Btrfs uses a copy-on-write mechanism, which helps maintain data integrity and ensure that data is never overwritten. The “datacow” option forces Btrfs to copy data instead of sharing it, while “nodatacow” allows Btrfs to share data whenever possible.

Datasum and Nodatasum

The “datasum” option calculates a checksum of data written to the file system, while the “nodatasum” disables this feature. It is useful for data integrity verification and detecting data corruptions.

In conclusion, Btrfs provides a wide range of mount options that can be used to optimize its performance, functionality, and data integrity. Choosing and configuring the appropriate mount option will help you to get the most out of your file system and ensure that your data remains safe and intact.

Btrfs is an advanced file system that offers various mount options to enhance its performance, data integrity, and functionality. We covered several critical mount options, including ACL, autodefrag, compress, subvol, device, degraded, commit, SSD, discard, norecovery, backuproot, space_cache, skip_balance, datacow, and datasum.

The choice of the right Btrfs mount option ultimately depends on your usage scenario, type of disk, and data access patterns. Remember to consult the man pages or documentation for your Linux distribution for guidance on which mount options are available and how to use them effectively.

Optimizing your Btrfs file system will ensure that your data remains secure, safe, and accessible.

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