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Posted Jan 22, 2011 22:36 UTC (Sat) by ccurtis (guest, #49713)
In reply to: LILO by solardiz
Parent article: Openwall Linux 3.0: Linux for the security-conscious

It's been a while, but I don't think I had a capacity >4TB at the time.

But it is nasty as you said. I think you understand the problem, but just in case: if you do not use GPT tables, you cannot physically reach any storage beyond that 2 (or 4?) TB limit. It doesn't matter how you partition the drive (or array) - that extra space can simply not be accessed.

There may be some dirty hacks around now, but at the time it was quite an unpleasant surprise to me. Carving out a smaller virtual device for booting wasn't something I wanted to do at the time; on the upside, I learned to appreciate GRUB.

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Posted Jan 23, 2011 2:45 UTC (Sun) by solardiz (subscriber, #35993) [Link]

We're in agreement on this.

Just to explain where I got the 4 TB figure from: my current understanding is that it is possible to have an almost-2 TB partition start at almost-2 TB into the device, thus it will end just below 4 TB (perhaps two sectors below 4 TiB, although I did not bother doing the math). That's with an MBR partition table. So on a 4 TB device, the first 2 TB may be partitioned arbitrarily (e.g., a few tiny partitions for the OS install, then an almost-2 TB partition for the machine's actual purpose), and the second 2 TB will have to be in one partition. Yes, this is a somewhat weird special case.


Posted Jan 24, 2011 2:34 UTC (Mon) by ccurtis (guest, #49713) [Link]

That's what I was thinking when I wrote "dirty hack" above. Not sure if there's any sign abuse going on in there or not.

But even that wouldn't have worked for my application (I don't think...), so GPT it was.

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