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new 8tb hd, which programm for make a partition on it?
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SarahS93
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:47 pm    Post subject: new 8tb hd, which programm for make a partition on it? Reply with quote

Have a new harddrive with 8tb, i will use it to store video files on it.
Do i need a special programm to make a partition on it? i fdisk ok for the job?
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Roman_Gruber
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you may use this: https://linux.die.net/man/8/gdisk

This may work too: https://linux.die.net/man/8/fdisk

or parted

or gparted when you want a graphical user interface


Last edited by Roman_Gruber on Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For a single filesystem I do not partition.
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SarahS93
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What are the pros and contras if i use a partition or not, on a single filesystem?
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NeddySeagoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SarahS93,

If you accidentally write a partition table in future, it wall damage your filesystem/data.
A GPT partition table costs you a few MB.

I don't like to mix and match. Its safe to have a partition table, even if its just for one partition.
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Computer users fall into two groups:-
those that do backups
those that have never had a hard drive fail.
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frostschutz
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The contra is that some installer / partitioner / bootloader / program might consider the disk free to use for anything if it does not see a partition table on it.

You should always use a partition table, unless you know exactly what you're doing.

Example parted session for creating one full size MiB-aligned partition:

Code:

parted /dev/8tbdisk
) unit mib
) print
) mklabel gpt
) mkpart video 1 -1
) print free
) quit
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why should I accidentally write a partition table? If I accidentally overwrite an existing partition table how is this better? BTW, fdisk warns you when filesystem signature is found on non-partitioned drive.
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NeddySeagoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffoon,

Recovering from an overwritten partition table is fairly painless.
None of your data is damaged by overwriting one partition table with another of the same type.

When you lose a chunk of your filesystem superblock at the start of the volume and some random data to the GPT copy at the end of the volume, its a bit more bother.
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Computer users fall into two groups:-
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those that have never had a hard drive fail.
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe, I have used non-partitioned disks for ages, never found myself accidentally creating partition tables on them.

But I have seen people creating single partitions and misaligning them.
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Hu
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although OP is probably doing this for personal use on a single-administrator system, the other concern with not having a partition table is that it goes against tradition. Suppose you are currently the only system administrator for an office and you avoid partitions when they are not strictly necessary. At some point, if the office grows, you might have a colleague who is given root. If that colleague is not aware of your practices, he or she might damage the filesystem, or at the very least panic when partitioning tools insist that there is no partition on this drive (because normally that indicates a severe problem, not just a personal choice to break with tradition). You can say that you would make it a point to train that person, and maybe you would, if they happened to hire on while you were still around. If you left for another job, and your old employer later hired someone to fill your role, that person may not be adequately informed about how you ran the office, so they might reasonably fall back on tradition. "Everyone does X, so I will assume that Buffoon did X."

I have been that second hire. I have not broken anything, but it still sucks trying to figure out how my predecessor did something when he did not leave adequate documentation and he broke with tradition, so I cannot reliably guess how he would have done it. In my case, it is not as simple as someone omitting unnecessary partitions, so the observation that it does not take long to investigate how it worked is true, but not helpful because each instance where my predecessor broke with tradition is another place I have to investigate to figure out how he did something, and often why he did it that way instead of the traditional way. If I do not understand why he did it, I risk violating some other assumption if I try to convert it to the traditional method.


Last edited by Hu on Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:14 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Tony0945
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gparted, I like the graphical tools. Less chance of a typo.

I did this on my 5TB drive. A 1 G EF00 partition and the rest of the drive to a second partition.

So, I wasted 1G. It was a miniscule amount anyway. 0.02%? You can make it smaller if you want.


Last edited by Tony0945 on Sat Sep 24, 2016 5:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
mate2 ~ # fdisk /dev/sdb

Welcome to fdisk (util-linux 2.28.2).
Changes will remain in memory only, until you decide to write them.
Be careful before using the write command.

Device /dev/sdb already contains a btrfs signature.
The signature will be removed by a write command.

Device does not contain a recognized partition table.
Created a new DOS disklabel with disk identifier 0x4de81199.

Command (m for help):



Doesn't this warning clear the picture?
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Hu
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffoon: sure, if we can assume that the user will use fdisk interactively, and that fdisk knows the signature of the filesystem on the device (does it know all the exotic filesystems? does it know the non-filesystem containers like LVM, LUKS, etc.?), and that the user will respond to the warning by not writing the partition table over the superblock of the filesystem. If any of those three assumptions fail, there is a good chance that the user will corrupt the superblock, possibly causing data loss. The alternative is to waste a small amount of space with an unnecessary partition that spans the whole drive. Given the amount of waste versus the size of the drive, I would choose the waste unless I was certain nobody else will ever touch this drive and that I would always remember what I had done. Personally, I am willing to take that risk. Acting as someone who posts advice to others, I am not willing to advise others to take that risk.
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Point taken. However, I think it is fair to let people know the partition is not needed. It requires a little out of box thinking, majority of users seem to be locked into believing a partition is necessary.
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frostschutz
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 5:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffoon wrote:
I think it is fair to let people know the partition is not needed.


Not fair if you don't mention the risks along with it and let people shoot themselves in the foot.

The filesystem is not needed either, if you find a program that is happy with raw data (or if you just need the one file - mplayer will happily play /dev/sda directly, if you have the read permissions for it).

That doesn't mean it's not good practice to use one anyway. Partition table is highly recommended, it's the most commonly understood way to declare that a disk is in use, and for what.

As for partition alignment, that really should no longer be an issue with any sane partitioner. And bad alignment just harms performance, it does not increase risk of data loss.

Quote:
Doesn't this warning clear the picture?


You wouldn't believe how many people miss warnings, even if they are red. (Does red on black work for colorblind people?)
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In situation where you are the second person and the first person is gone (as described by Hu above) you pay attention. In case you miss the warning and cannot figure out how the drive is used you have got wrong job. What about RAID drives, there may be no partition table either if RAID is created on bare drives and the partition table is on RAID volume instead? Go ahead panicking and destroy the RAID?

So you recommend highly to use partition table.

I recommend highly not to use partition table.

Now what?

There are basic utilities that can tell you all you need to know (again, if you do not know how to use them you've got wrong job):
Code:
mate2 ~ # file -s /dev/sdb
/dev/sdb: BTRFS Filesystem label "ultrabay", sectorsize 4096, nodesize 16384, leafsize 16384, UUID=9a41157c-ff2a-4ce2-bfcf-b73432cee4fd, 491359100928/500107862016 bytes used, 1 devices


Quote:
Not fair if you don't mention the risks along with it and let people shoot themselves in the foot.

What risks?
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frostschutz
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 9:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffoon wrote:
What about RAID drives, there may be no partition table either if RAID is created on bare drives and the partition table is on RAID volume instead?


For hardware RAID / bios RAID that might be normal. For Linux mdadm it's still better to use partitions. I also make use of GPT names here, which gives me /dev/disk/by-partlabel/md3-{0,1,2,3,4,...} for md number and role. This helps a lot in case you have to do any recovery.

I slice my disks into 250G partitions, so I have 4 mdadm-RAIDs per TB, instead of one for the whole disk. If one disk has a partial failure, instead of kicking the entire disk out of the array, it will only kick the general area (the 250G slice with the bad sectors) while everything else stays redundant. You can distribute your RAID checks, grows, etc. There is less damage after a power loss - resync only for slices that were written to, without the constant performance penalty of write intent bitmap.

For me this is the "thinking outside the box" you mentioned earlier. An unusual approach to things that solves a problem / offers some benefit of some kind.

I don't see any benefits at all to not using a partition table. (The alignment issue, which is the only argument I've seen from you, has been solved for some years now. If you choose to ignore all of my points, I can choose to ignore this one.)

Buffoon wrote:
I recommend highly not to use partition table.


And that's okay - as long as you know full well what you're doing. Most people don't, and even experienced users can make mistakes sometimes.

Here's an example what happens with a Windows 10 CD, when it comes across an existing [Linux] filesystem a) without partition table, b) with partition table

http://imgur.com/a/GtcR2

a) without partition table, Win10 installs directly with no warning whatsoever

b) with partition table, Win10 refuses to install, and warns about data loss when you try to delete the partition

Using partition tables is safer. - q.e.d.

And you can get the same with Linux installers and all sorts of programs really. Unpartitioned filesystems are unusual enough to not be taken into consideration by a lot of scripts.
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What's Win10? It is not in portage.

I have to say there is no really valid argument pro partitioning in this thread.

How about this one: Floppy disks became extinct because they were used without partition table?
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Hu
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffoon wrote:
What's Win10? It is not in portage.

I have to say there is no really valid argument pro partitioning in this thread.

How about this one: Floppy disks became extinct because they were used without partition table?
Win10, short for Windows 10, is the latest disaster from Microsoft Corporation. Many users still insist on installing some form of Microsoft Windows, and some of those users dual boot one machine as both Linux and Windows. According to frostschutz's post (which I have not personally verified, but have no reason to doubt), the Windows 10 installer provided to end users will readily trash a Linux system that does not use a partition table, but provides some safety if the system has a partition table. To me, that alone is an argument for why inexperienced users should use a partition table.

I do not understand how you still say that there is no valid argument here. We have presented many cases where the presence of a partition table discourages an unaware user, or more commonly, a stupid program, from causing data loss. In the case frostschutz described, the data loss would likely be quite substantial. The earlier cases, where only the superblock and/or the tail of the filesystem were overwritten, would likely be recoverable with some effort, or might cause loss of a few megabytes of data. Allowing Windows 10, or any other installer, to overwrite a drive because it thinks the drive is empty, would likely lose so much of the filesystem that restoring from backup would be far more time efficient than repairing or reconstructing the data.

Floppy disks became extinct because they were superseded by storage mechanisms that were superior in every way that mattered to the people who want portable storage.
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Buffoon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 11:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unaware user has no business messing with hard drives at admin level.

Same goes for stupid program. It requires root access to do the damage.

If you run untested scripts on unknown hardware as root you deserve whatever is coming to you.

I created a RAIDZ2 array. Tell me why should I have partitioned the drives first? What script is coming to eat my RAID alive without asking me?
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Hu
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 12:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Windows 10 installer, as frostschutz said above, would eat those drives. You may consider it a stupid program, but it is easy to get, easy to start, and will readily cause major data loss in your recommended configuration. I am pretty sure Microsoft tested the Windows 10 installer before releasing it. Users will, whether rightly or not, assume that an installer from a well known source will meet certain minimum safety standards. Would you say it is a bug in the Windows 10 installer that it will overwrite your drives?
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axl
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 1:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buffoon wrote:
For a single filesystem I do not partition.


sorry. but i so love this comment. why not use the whole disk? /sda /sdb /sdc /sdd and so on.
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axl
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 1:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mkfs.xfs /dev/large_disk and just enjoy. xfs is very good at large chunks of data. is just wonderful. you dont even need partitions. linux is awesum. use the whole disk.

you only need partitions if those disks are involved in boot or multi operating systems situations. most disk dont even need a partition table. one layer of nothingness.

just xfs that drive :D
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frostschutz
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 12:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

axl wrote:
why not use the whole disk?


Here's someone who used LUKS w/o a partition table, and lost it due to something installing a bootloader or whatever on that disk: http://askubuntu.com/questions/674709/luks-encrypted-device-gone-missing

With damaged LUKS header there is no recovery. With filesystems, it depends.

axl wrote:
one layer of nothingness.


It adds a safety margin and adds safety simply by being the standard/common use case that programs expect to see.

Anyway, no point discussing it further. Everyone has to make their own choices.
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Tony0945
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

frostschutz wrote:
Anyway, no point discussing it further. Everyone has to make their own choices.
Yes, we've strayed far afield from the OP's request for a recommendation for a partitioning tool.
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