Try btrfs on usb

I have laptop running manjaro kde on ext4 partitions. I want to get familiar with btrfs before migrating to it on this system. I’ve created a btrfs volume on a 32GB usb drive. When I try to mount it, I get unknown file system error. The btrfs commands are available on the system but I suppose the kernel is lacking support? What do I need do to get this installation supporting btrfs? A complete reinstall is not an option as this machine is needed for other work.

Your best option is to not touch your running system - do not experiment with the filesystem on a production system.

btrfs is by some judged as the filesystem - but they tend to forget to mention the required knowledgde to maintain such system.

ext4 is the defacto standard - well supported - does not require extensive knowledge to maintain - to keep out of trouble - leave your system as is - at least until you - personally - have gathered sufficient experience to make the change.

Why not spin up a Manjaro VM in Virtualbox and install with btrfs as the FS?

Some resources you may want to look into:

You find good Information about Btrfs in the wiki

In german, but worth translating:

This is about creating a persistent usb-stick and transform the filesystem to btrfs … This may be a good “lesson” to learn some things about btrfs without any risk.

That sounds like a good approach. I was hoping I could just explore on the usb, but a vm is certainly safer. Thanks.