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Old 12-08-2004, 06:19 PM   #1
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: Greece
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 345

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Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/hda: 163.9 GB, 163928604672 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 19929 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/hda1               1          36      289138+  83  Linux
/dev/hda2              37         158      979965   82  Linux swap
/dev/hda3             159        5021    39062047+  83  Linux
/dev/hda4            5022       16709    93883860    5  Extended
/dev/hda5            5022       16709    93883828+  83  Linux
/dev/hda4 & /dev/hda5 use the same sectors. I cant mount/format hda4
What exactly is hda4? Is safe to delete it?

hda1 --> boot
hda2 --> swap
hda3 --> /

thx for your help
Old 12-08-2004, 06:28 PM   #2
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Registered: Dec 2004
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dont delete it ....
Old 12-08-2004, 06:50 PM   #3
Registered: Dec 2004
Location: Tulsa, OK, USA
Distribution: SUSE, ArchLinux, Gentoo, LFS, Slackware, Fedora
Posts: 100

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Don't worry, that layout is normal. The reason it looks like this is because a HD can only have 4 'primary' partitions. However, you can set up a primary partition to be an 'extended' partition, so that it can be divided into more partitions. That last partition of yours, hda4, is really just a container for more partitions. You could have hda5, hda6, & hda7 sitting on extended partition hda4. I am probably not explaining this very well, so here is a link:
Old 12-08-2004, 06:51 PM   #4
Registered: Apr 2002
Location: in a fallen world
Distribution: slackware by choice, others too :} ... android.
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To elaborate a bit on that "Don't delete it" ... :}

It's all good, you needn't worry about it. hda4 is an
extended partition (just a logical structure) that holds
other partitions - in your case only one. You don't
lose any space, if you delete it you lose the contained

[edit]Heh - too slow ;}[/edit]

Old 12-08-2004, 06:52 PM   #5
Registered: Nov 2003
Location: Ronneby, Sweden
Posts: 555

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A hard disk can only hold 4 primary partitions (a limitation set when the first PC was conceived in the early eighties). To overcome this it's possible to make one of the partitions extended. Then that partition is nothing but a container that can hold one or more logical partitions. Sounds complicated? It gets worse

hda4 is an extended partition (as you can see in the output from fdisk). This means that it holds (in your case) 1 logical partition. You can mount hda5 if you want to. If there's nothing of interest on it, you could delete hda5. Then you could chop up the space in several (logical) partitions. You could also delete hda4 and make a primary partition out of it, but then you can't make any more partitions.

I have probably confused you totally now. Read this if you are interested in knowing more:


Edit: RATS! Two minutes late. We even referred to the same page ...

Last edited by MartinN; 12-08-2004 at 06:54 PM.
Old 12-08-2004, 07:15 PM   #6
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: Greece
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 345

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aha, i thought that primary partitions contains extented.
now its clean

thx for all your replies (really fast i can say )


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