Visit Jeremy's Blog.
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Hardware
User Name
Linux - Hardware This forum is for Hardware issues.
Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?


  Search this Thread
Old 11-30-2005, 02:01 AM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Sep 2005
Posts: 20

Rep: Reputation: 0
Formating a New Partition on USB Hard drive

I have just partitioned my external hard drive using Partition magic 8.0. I needed to partition in in FC4 so that I can use it to backup the Linux partition of my Hard drive. Can somebody please help me.
Old 11-30-2005, 02:02 AM   #2
LQ Newbie
Registered: Sep 2005
Posts: 20

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Sorry, I men't I need to format the new partition. A GUI solution would be prefered
Old 11-30-2005, 12:49 PM   #3
LQ 5k Club
Registered: May 2003
Location: London, UK
Distribution: Debian "Testing"
Posts: 6,096

Rep: Reputation: 408Reputation: 408Reputation: 408Reputation: 408Reputation: 408
You have not told us your distribution (this helps us to help you, please update your profile!)

I do not know a GUI way of doing what you want, but the command line is easy to use.

I have never used "Partition Magic", I just use fdisk. First, you need to have a look at your disk to make sure it is the right one, and partitioned as you 'd like it. I am assuming the disk you want to format is /dev/hdb. So take a look at it (You will have to be root to use these commands):

fdisk -l /dev/hdb (That's a lower case "L", not a "1")

Do the partitions look right? If not, maybe you should be looking at another disk eg /dev/hda. Choose which disk/partition you want to format. Be very careful here, if you format the wrong partition you will be in big trouble (lost data)!

Now you need to choose a filesystem. I use ext3. So if I wanted to format /dev/hdb1 as ext3, the command is:

mke2fs -j /dev/hdb1

See man mke2fs for more detail.

Edit: As it is your EXTERNAL drive, it is probably /dev/sda

Last edited by tredegar; 11-30-2005 at 12:51 PM.
Old 11-30-2005, 07:51 PM   #4
LQ Addict
Registered: Jul 2002
Location: East Centra Illinois, USA
Distribution: Debian stable
Posts: 5,908

Rep: Reputation: 354Reputation: 354Reputation: 354Reputation: 354
To repartition an external drive in Linux, I use cfdisk. It's the closest you will come to GUI. It displays a dos-type screen showing the existing partitions, if any. Selections for actions to perform are displayed at the bottom of the screen. Use the arrow-keys to move through the options.

To resize a partition, use the up-down arrow keys to select the partition to resize. Then the left-right keys to select resize. The prompt will show you the current size. Just type in a new size (no need to backspace or delete the existing size).

Select the type of partition, and you will see a chart of types. Linux is type 83. Press enter to exit the types page, then enter 83.

If you want to make the partition bootable, select the bootable option.

When done making the first partition, DO NOT write the partition table if you want to make another partition. Make all the partitions first by successive selecting the free space then new, until all the partitions are made.

Then select write to write the new partition table. If you write each as you make it, you will end up with a mess. Then you will have to delete them all and reboot. Then try again.

Once you do write the partition table, reboot before doing anything else for the new partition table to become effective. Then use whatever Mandrake offers to select the partitions and format them.

If you don't have anything else as an external drive (such as zip), then Mandy will call it /dev/sda (or possibly /dev/uba as some distros do). If you do have an existing external drive, then this will be /dev/sdb (or /dev/ubb).


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
Partition or USB Hard Drive? Matir Linux - Laptop and Netbook 6 03-18-2005 11:31 PM
formating hard drive icanspellnew Linux - General 9 11-13-2004 04:56 PM
Formating hard drive? jnassiri Linux - Newbie 5 08-04-2004 01:11 AM
Formating Hard Drive Zakane Linux - Newbie 20 08-25-2003 01:13 PM
Formating 2 hard drive Tenchi147 Linux - Hardware 1 05-31-2003 06:01 PM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Hardware

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:54 AM.

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