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Re: Please help with following situation

From: Felix Miata
Subject: Re: Please help with following situation
Date: Mon, 22 Nov 2010 12:49:40 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (OS/2; Warp 4.5; rv:2.0b8pre) Gecko/20101030 SeaMonkey/2.1b2pre

On 2010/11/22 08:19 (GMT-0600) Steve Cohen composed:

Perhaps the following fdisk output might shed light on the situation:

$ sudo fdisk /dev/sda

WARNING: DOS-compatible mode is deprecated. It's strongly recommended to
           switch off the mode (command 'c') and change display units to
           sectors (command 'u').

Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/sda: 80.0 GB, 80026361856 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 9729 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x000b6a5d

     Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *           1         947     7605248   83  Linux
Partition 1 does not end on cylinder boundary.
/dev/sda2             973        9730    70337537    5  Extended
/dev/sda3             964         982      143640    e  W95 FAT16 (LBA)
Partition 3 does not end on cylinder boundary.
/dev/sda5             973        1459     3905536   82  Linux swap / Solaris
/dev/sda6            1460        9730    66430976   83  Linux

Partition table entries are not in disk order

Command (m for help): c
DOS Compatibility flag is not set

If not for the "not end on cylinder boundary" and "not in disk order"
situations, do you think the the general layout of partitions should

It should, but to prevent unforeseen future difficulties from the non-standard properties I'd eradicate them first if you have the time.

  I could possibly reinstall the whole system.  There is not that
much there.  If so, what should I do differently?

1-Make sure to always create all primary partitions prior to any logicals to avoid "out of order". To do this, always make 3 before any logicals whether you need 3 or not. Make the unneededs a nominal size if you don't want to keep it/them, deleting unneededs after any logical has been created. This makes the extended sda4, (usually) keeping partitions in order no matter how many there actually are.

2-On any HD that needs to be DOS compatible, never use a partitioning tool that will create partitions that don't land on DOS boundaries if there's any chance anyone will ever subsequently need to use a DOS partitioning tool on it. DOS operating systems don't care about boundaries, but its FDISK & various compatible tools do.

If you do a lot of partitioning, I recommend sampling DFSee before settling on any other partitioning tool. It does more than just manage partitions, with native binaries for DOS, Windows, OS/2, Linux & Mac, which means you get fully compatible results no matter which you use. The interface is the same on all. It's compact, can be run from a floppy boot. It has a helpful dedicated support forum. But it is shareware.

DFSee can sort that partition table into disk order (so can other tools, and so too can anyone who knows how to use a sector editor, moving the 16 bytes at 0x1CE to 0x1EE). It can delete the existing partitions without destroying their content (as can some other tools), meaning you can probably eliminate the boundary messages without disturbing content by deleting then recreating with (standard) DOS compatible ending boundaries.
"The wise are known for their understanding, and pleasant
words are persuasive." Proverbs 16:21 (New Living Translation)

 Team OS/2 ** Reg. Linux User #211409

Felix Miata  ***

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