I see "gone to lunch" type performance from commodity SD cards that contain a root file system when packages are installed. The mmcqd/0 kernel process seems to hang on IO, clearing up to several minutes later! That is with SD cards from the biggest names in that field. However if I use an industrial grade SD card (e.g. from ATP and a lot more expensive) then I don't see that lousy performance. USB flash cards would probably suffer from the same problem; and USB adds broken error processing on top of horrible mass storage class implementations. Are there industrial grade USB flash cards?