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Ubuntu Unleashed 2014 Edition: Covering 13.10 and 14.04,Ninth Edition by Paul Hudson, Andrew Hudson, Matthew Helmke

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Disabling File Access Time

Whenever Linux reads a file, it changes the last access time (known as the atime). This is also true for your web server: If you are getting hit by 50 requests a second, your hard disk will be updating the atime 50 times a second. Do you really need to know the last time a file was accessed? If not, you can disable the atime setting for a directory by typing this:

matthew@seymour:~$ chattr –R +A /path/to/directory

The chattr command changes file system attributes, of which “don’t update atime” is one. To set that attribute, use +A and specify -R so that it is recursively set. /path/to/directory gets changed, and so do all the files and subdirectories it contains.

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