Important: You are required to change your passwords used for Gentoo services and set an email address for your Wiki account if you haven't done so. See the full announcement and Wiki email policy change for more information.

Partition

From Gentoo Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
External resources

Master Boot Record (MBR)

Used for a long time to organize data, also called DOS-Partitions. Partition information is stored in the MBR of the device.

  • widely spread and support in nearly all operating systems
  • very well documented
  • maximum of 4 primary partitions per device
  • maximum size of the device 2 TiB
  • using one as extended partition (of the 4 primary), it is possible to create additional logical partitions to work around the problem of only 4 partitions

Programs

To create/alter MBR partitions

Program Package GUI Function
fdisk sys-apps/util-linux No create, remove, alter partitions
parted sys-block/parted No create, remove, alter, resize partitions
gparted sys-block/gparted Qt / GTK+ create, remove, alter, resize partitions

Supported OS

  • BSD (Mac OS X) - full support
  • DOS - full support
  • Linux - full support
  • Solaris - full support
  • Windows - full support

GUID Partition Table (GPT)

In GUID partition system a small amount of disk space at the beginning of the device is used to store the partition information. Its main advantage is the supported size of storage devices and it creates a backup of the partition table at the end of the device.

  • widely spread and support in most modern operating systems
  • used to require the GRUB2 bootloader, but the functionality was backported to earlier versions
  • maximum of 128 primary partitions per device
  • maximum size of the device 8 ZiB

Programs

To create/alter GPT partitions

Program GUI Function
sys-apps/gptfdisk No create, remove, alter, resize partitions, convert MBR to GPT, recreate partition tables from backup
sys-block/gparted Qt / GTK+ create, remove, alter, resize partitions

Supported OS

  • BSD (Mac OS X) - full support
  • Linux - full support
  • Windows - cannot boot itself, needs the EFI bootloader or Linux GRUB2 with dualboot (Since Server 2008 or Vista SP1)

Logical Volume Manager (LVM)

LVM is a complete suite to dynamically manage partitions, storage devices or other underlying systems as volumes.

  • widely spread and support in most modern operating systems
  • needs GRUB2 bootloader
  • maximum size of the device depends on the underlying systems limitations
  • maximum size of Logical Volumes is 8 EiB on 64-bit Linux and 16 TiB on 32-bit Linux
  • storage devices, raid system, network storage (e.g. iSCSI) can be used complete as Physical Volume (no need of partitioning)
  • it provides basic forms of redundancy like mirror, RAID 5 or stripset for performance
Note
To use features like dynamic resizing, the used filesystem should be resizeable as well.

Programs

The following programs come with sys-fs/lvm2

Program GUI Function
pvcreate No create, remove Physical Volumes of storage devices/systems
vgcreate No group PV as Volume Group
lvcreate No create, remove, alter, resize volumes

Supported OS

  • BSD - cannot boot itself, needs Linux GRUB2 with dualboot
  • Linux - full support
Note
This is the Linux specific LVM implementation, other OS have their own systems, see Logical volume management.

ZFS

ZFS is a complete suite to dynamically manage storage and file system.

  • support in Linux (via ZFSOnLinux), Solaris, FreeBSD
  • needs GRUB2 bootoader
  • maximum size of a single zpool is 256 ZiB
  • storage devices can be used complete as vdev (no need of partitioning)
  • zpools are created once and cannot be resized afterwards. Every volume has access to the full capacity of the zpool, this can be reduced via quota.
  • it provides several forms of redundancy like mirror (also performance), RAID 5, RAID 6 or stripset for performance
  • has its own file system with features like compression, copy on write, deduplication.

Programs

The following programs come with sys-fs/zfs

Program GUI Function
zpool No manage and organize vdevs in zpools
zfs No create, remove, alter, resize volumes

Supported OS

  • BSD - full support
  • Linux - build as external module because of the CDDL and GPL licence conflict - mostly supported
  • Solaris - full support

See also