As a final sendoff to speed week, I rebuilt the GX150 with xfs file systems and compared it to the other installations. I decided to give it a try after axely’s impassioned endorsement of xfs here.
To be honest, booting was one or two seconds slower than ext3 with dir_index, et. al., and that (of course) is the fault of the processor. It’s quicker to set up, but it’s just not meant to be.
Of course, I did try it out on the gigantamo SCSI drive in the 1600SC, and Xubuntu boots faster than you can spell it. So that will definitely be sticking around.
The only downside: Poweredge machines were obviously never intended to be turned off. The BIOS takes like a minute and a half to probe itself (with no obvious option for a fast boot), and with two SCSI controllers in there, a fast boot is necessary to keep me from going outright insane waiting.