Re: Reading the BSD partition table from Linux/Intel

From: G. Hugh Song (
Date: Thu Apr 27 2000 - 20:00:32 EST

Dear all,

Thank you very much for the great help.

On Thu, 27 Apr 2000, Maciej W. Rozycki wrote:

> On Wed, 26 Apr 2000 wrote:
> > > UP2000 has an on-board Adaptec AIC7896. Recently, the motherboard
> > > itself got screwed. I now need to access the data in the hard disk
> > > attached to that system. The hard disk has the BSD disklabel
> >
> > It seems you are not quite sure what type of disklabel and what type
> > of filesystem this disk has (perhaps BSD / perhaps ufs or ext2).
> If using 2.3.x kernels you need to enable CONFIG_OSF_PARTITION to access
> SRM-compatible disks prepared on Alpha. The kernel will be able to mount
> these partitions then.

I'd like to comment that "OSF_PARTITION" may confuse many including me.
It would have been better if the option title were "SRMBOOT_PARTITION".

> For 2.2.x kernels the option is exactly the same but it is not
> user-settable -- it's set unconditionally in linux/genhd.h when compiling
> for Alpha. I suppose you may just change the "#ifdef __alpha__" that
> precedes it to "#if 1" to set it unconditionally for every architecture.
> > Once your disklabel is read correctly you find the filesystemtype
> > just by trying to mount (mount -t ext2 ... or mount -t ufs ...).
> > Note that there are many flavours of ufs. Read mount(8) and
> > linux/Documentation/filesystems/ufs.txt .
> If the disk was used for Linux it almost surely has the ext2 filesystem.
> If it was used for OSF/1 then it has the ufs filesystem (or an advfs
> filesystem Linux cannot handle).
> > If you want to use fdisk to look at the disklabel, use the latest one
> > (from util-linux 2.10l).

I tried to find the place for util-linux 2.10l, but could not find it.
Does anyone know the place? BTW, I hope that I do not actually need
to use "fdisk". I assume that I can just mount the partition by
typing commands like

mkdir /rescue
mount -t ext2 /dev/sdb6 /rescue

Is "/dev/sdb*" correct?

> Looking at bselect() from the current fdisk it will not handle OSF/1
> disklabels unless on Alpha so you cannot look at these on an i386/Linux
> machine.

It is quite frustrasting to accept this as a Linux/Alpha user.
Even those MacIntosh file systems are readable under Linux/i386.
I think that there are more cases of rescue operation with OSF_RARTITION
rather than those with the MacIntosh_PARTITION.

> You may try to compile minlabel -- not sure if it will work for
> i386/Linux straight out of the box, though.
> --
> + Maciej W. Rozycki, Technical University of Gdansk, Poland +
> +--------------------------------------------------------------+
> + e-mail:, PGP key available +

My hard disk coming back from the vendor today. I certainly hope for
the best.

Thank you

Best regards,

G. Hugh Song

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