LinuxQuestions.org
Visit Jeremy's Blog.
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Password
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!

Notices


Reply
  Search this Thread
Old 01-17-2010, 01:13 PM   #1
trist007
Senior Member
 
Registered: May 2008
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 1,033

Rep: Reputation: 69
I got a question about boot partitions...


I've always been confused about this issue of boot partitions. In the past when I install linux I usually have 2-3 partitions.

1. Main OS partition mounted on /
2. Storage partition mounted on /home
3. Swap partition

Why and when would I need to have a boot partition? Even if I dual boot two OSs, I just make one more partition for that other OS.

So what's the purpose of a boot partition?
 
Old 01-17-2010, 01:36 PM   #2
DavidMcCann
Senior Member
 
Registered: Jul 2006
Location: London
Distribution: CentOS, Salix
Posts: 4,260

Rep: Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245Reputation: 1245
The main reason for a boot partition (and the only one I can remember!) is that GRUB is a bit fussy about partitioning. If you use logical volume management, this is too complex for the booting process, so /boot must be on a separate partition. GRUB also had trouble with ext4 when it first arrived, so a separate /boot was needed in ext2 or ext3 format.
 
Old 01-17-2010, 01:39 PM   #3
irishbitte
Senior Member
 
Registered: Oct 2007
Location: Brighton, UK
Distribution: Ubuntu Hardy, Ubuntu Jaunty, Eeebuntu, Debian, SME-Server
Posts: 1,213
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 83
Generally speaking it is good practice on a machine that is used as a server type system to have a /boot partition. Like all partitions, the main purpose of having a partition for the /boot files is to prevent other services from overwriting the files in the partition. For example, in a case where there are a pile of logfiles growing due to buggy code or badly configure services, it may be necessary to put the log directory /var/log into it's own partition.

Consider the situation where everything is on one partition. It is likely that you will have difficulties at some stage with some piece of software going where it shouldn't. Partitions are a good way to engage in preemptive damage limitation. Another useful aspect of partitions is for backup purposes.
 
Old 01-17-2010, 01:42 PM   #4
trist007
Senior Member
 
Registered: May 2008
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 1,033

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 69
Ok so all the boot paramters like lilo.conf, the vmlinuz image and config would be on the boot partition?

Also yeah, I'm confused about LVMs. I've never used them except once on Fedora. What's their advantages/disadvantages?
 
Old 01-17-2010, 06:11 PM   #5
chrism01
LQ Guru
 
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Sydney
Distribution: Centos 6.8, Centos 5.10
Posts: 17,247

Rep: Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328Reputation: 2328
There's an LVM HOWTO here http://tldp.org/HOWTO/LVM-HOWTO/
Basically, you can add lots of physical disks (each disk called a pv = physical volume) into a pool (vg = volume group).
You can then divide the vg into 1 or more lvs (logical volumes), so you don't need to worry if the disks are different sizes/makes (unlike RAID).
Handy way to just keep adding disks and expanding space, but tricky if any part breaks.
Definitely require regular backups...
 
Old 01-17-2010, 06:14 PM   #6
onebuck
Moderator
 
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Midwest USA, Central Illinois
Distribution: SlackwareŽ
Posts: 12,601
Blog Entries: 25

Rep: Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981Reputation: 1981
Hi,

The big deal with having a '/boot' was when the hdd had a cylinder count greater than '1024'. We would create a separate '/boot' partition on the hdd <1024. Now that 'lilo' & 'Grub' can handle cylinder counts >1024 this is no longer an issue.

Another advantage was to have multiple installs or kernel images for the system residing in the '/boot' that way there would be no conflicts between the installs.

Now a lot of people wanting to use Grub2 with ext4 which can cause conflicts. To avoid the conflict you can create a 'ext2' filesystem on the device for the '/boot' when using 'Grub2'.

 
  


Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Computer won't boot live-cd, bios is boot from disc, accidentally emptied partitions. pleasefloss Linux - Newbie 12 01-14-2010 08:20 PM
[SOLVED] dual boot two disks with separate /boot partitions [GOD]Anck Slackware 5 09-12-2009 04:32 PM
Solved: Dual boot, deleted /boot and all linux partitions, system boots to grub> cuco76 Linux - Software 0 01-06-2009 06:27 PM
Question on creating more partitions than default ones, i.e. /home,/root partitions casmac SUSE / openSUSE 1 12-20-2006 06:02 PM
cloning both partitions, dual boot system, master boot record, logical volume manager saranga2000 Linux - Hardware 3 01-10-2005 12:04 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:44 PM.

Main Menu
Advertisement
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration