using multiple harddisks can increase performance, since I/O can be done
in parallel. But what would be an optimal filesystem-layout on, say,
two disks of equal size? Swap should evidently be spread equally over
the different drives. As for the filesystems, say I'd have a large /usr
and /home, each on one harddrive, and smaller /, /var and /tmp which
could reside on either disk. / and /usr would be mostly read-only.
There is nothing wrong with the approach you are taking, and it will indeed help balance load out between multiple spindles. That being said, you have to know (by measuring) or at least predict what your I/O access patterns are between the various filesystems in order to gain full advantage.
An easier way of balancing load between two or more drives involves using RAID-0 striping, although the drives do not have to be equal in size. Commodity ATA RAID controllers like Highpoint, Promise, & 3ware are fairly cheap, or one could use software RAID like vinum.
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