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LPI Linux LPIC-1 101 and CompTIA Linux+

Design Hard Disk Layout

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LPIC1 & CompTIA Linux+ Intro

Hardware Settings

Boot the System

Change Runlevels and Reboot or Shutdown the System

Design Hard Disk Layout

00:00:00 - Okay welcome to section 102.1, sounds like a radio station. But
00:00:05 - no this section is hard drive layout. We're going to learn
00:00:08 - all about partitioning and disks. What that means and, and why
00:00:12 - we would want to do it. We're going to learn about different file
00:00:15 - systems, there can be local file systems or network file systems.
00:00:18 - We're going to learn about mount points, that's mount points
00:00:21 - on your Linux system. We're going to learn what swap space is.
00:00:25 - Why we would want it, where we would put it. And then we're going
00:00:27 - to learn about design considerations for different types of
00:00:31 - Linux installs, I mean like for a desktop or for a server or you
00:00:35 - know, that kind of thing. So we're going to look at all
00:00:37 - these things and the first thing we are going to look at is
00:00:41 - going to be what it, what I'm talking about by file systems
00:00:44 - and mount points and all that kind of stuff. So let's look at a computer.
00:00:50 - Alright, so here we have our Linux system, we're on Ubuntu
00:00:53 - here now. And what I want to show you is the computer. So let's
00:00:56 - look at a computer. Now how it's set up, basically is just
00:01:01 - a file system and everything looks as though it's one continuous
00:01:04 - file system. For example there's, there's a couple special folders
00:01:08 - here like the boot folder which is going to contain all the information
00:01:11 - about kernels and stuff, which we talked about before. And see
00:01:14 - it just shows up as a folder here inside the root directory which
00:01:18 - is slash. If you will, just a slash or forward slash
00:01:22 - is the root directory. And these are all the folders underneath. Now there
00:01:25 - are some things, some special ones like home you'll see user
00:01:28 - spowers. That's my account right there. The etc folder is
00:01:32 - where configurations are stored, the root folder is the
00:01:37 - root user account stored there, that's like a home folder
00:01:40 - just for the root user and then var is a folder, come on, open
00:01:45 - up. This has a bunch of different things inside, this is where
00:01:49 - a lot of times your web server will run from, this is almost
00:01:52 - always where log files are kept in var log surprisingly enough
00:01:57 - actually not surprising, that's where you'd expect it to be.
00:01:59 - But it's just this hierarchy of files and it starts at the root
00:02:03 - level right here which is root or slash; its forward slash
00:02:07 - called root. Not to be confused with this folder because this
00:02:11 - folder is, yeah I don't have, I'm not the root user so I can't look inside
00:02:15 - because
00:02:16 - r-o-o-t is the root users home directory and the
00:02:22 - reason that it's there is because a lot of times the home directory
00:02:25 - isn't saved on the local computer. A lot of times this will be
00:02:29 - a network device.
00:02:31 - And the root user needs to log in even if there is something
00:02:34 - wrong with the home, with the home folder. So let's talk about what
00:02:37 - it looks like. See here they all just look like one big folder
00:02:40 - scheme but in reality these can be mounted on several different
00:02:43 - hard drives some of them can be network mounted and we're going
00:02:46 - to talk about the best way to design a system so that it runs
00:02:50 - the most efficiently because that's really what this section
00:02:52 - is about; how to design disk partitions and mounts so that they work
00:02:56 - best for a Linux system. So let's go a little bit, let's get a little
00:03:00 - bit of background on how partitioning a hard drive actually works.
00:03:06 - Alright, let's start with a basic system. Now a basic,
00:03:10 - just put it up here, basic desktop machine we'll say, okay.
00:03:16 - For a basic desktop machine you're going to have just a few
00:03:19 - partitions. You're going to have the root partition, now
00:03:23 - this is not to be confused with
00:03:26 - the root partition. Remember we talked about that, that's not what I'm talking
00:03:29 - about here, okay. I'm talking about just this forward slash, the
00:03:33 - root, the, the start of the entire file system format, okay. And this
00:03:38 - is going to be in, in a basic desktop system, it's going
00:03:42 - to probably be the biggest, okay. The majority of your drive
00:03:47 - is going to be there and then you'll have the boot partition.
00:03:51 - This is probably going to be, now hard drives are getting bigger
00:03:54 - but a hundred megabytes
00:03:57 - to, depending on how many kernel versions you want to keep,
00:04:01 - maybe a little bit bigger. But generally a hundred megabytes
00:04:04 - is a pretty good size for the boot partition because that's
00:04:07 - going to give you, you know enough size to keep a couple
00:04:10 - kernel revisions in the boot directory. And the boot directory
00:04:13 - again, just pretty much has kernels in it and some grub configuration and
00:04:16 - that's it. The reason this is going to be separate and
00:04:19 - it's not just going to be a folder inside the root directory
00:04:22 - is let's say,
00:04:24 - well first of all some older Linux distributions won't
00:04:28 - support really big file systems as the boot directory. So say
00:04:33 - this is a terabyte drive, well if you just make boot a folder
00:04:36 - inside the root directory, it's not going to be able to see it, okay. So
00:04:40 - it's a good practice to make boot this folder a separate small
00:04:45 - partition on the hard drive. Generally with modern distributions
00:04:48 - it's not necessary and a lot of distributions like Ubuntu, they
00:04:51 - don't make this a separate partition. But it's important to
00:04:54 - know why you'd want to do that. Is that older distributions
00:04:57 - couldn't handle the large drive support, so they wouldn't
00:05:02 - require this initial partition to be very small. This would also have
00:05:05 - to be the first partition on the hard drive. So you have root,
00:05:08 - you have boot and then generally now it's, it's not really
00:05:13 - a mounted there in the file system, so you know maybe we will
00:05:17 - just do away with this slash in the beginning but it's
00:05:20 - swap file and what swap file is, it's generally. Let's
00:05:25 - say you have a gigabyte of memory like actual RAM, the swap
00:05:28 - file is going to be one to maybe two times the RAM. Hold on, the RAM.
00:05:39 - So if you have like two gigs of RAM, maybe you want a four gig
00:05:43 - swap partition and what happens is when the, the physical
00:05:47 - memory is filled up it starts putting some of the, of the current
00:05:51 - memory space on to the hard drive. It's a lot slower than
00:05:54 - memory, but that way computer programs don't crash, okay. This
00:05:57 - is just a paging file, if you're familiar with Windows.
00:06:01 - It's just a swap file, it's what it's called in Linux. In general they
00:06:04 - don't hurt to have them big, better a little bit too
00:06:07 - big than too small and with modern hardrives being so big you can afford
00:06:10 - to make this a little bit bigger than normal. And this is generally
00:06:15 - what you see on a basic desktop machine, okay, this set up right
00:06:19 - here. And
00:06:21 - for most intents and purposes this works. In fact sometimes
00:06:23 - you don't even see this boot partition anymore, you just see a root
00:06:26 - and some swap and that's it. So if you install Ubuntu for example
00:06:30 - today, you're just going to have the root partition and the
00:06:32 - swap partition, alright. So that is what the basic desktop machine
00:06:36 - is going to look like but there are some reasons that you would want
00:06:39 - to split that up a little bit more and that's what we're going
00:06:41 - to move to. We're going to talk to, talk about possibly something
00:06:46 - in a network environment. So let's move to there.
00:06:49 - Okay, so on a network work station, this is where like you're at a
00:06:52 - school or a business and there are some common things that are going
00:06:55 - to be shared. So that no matter what computer you go to generally
00:06:58 - people can log into multiple computers. There's probably going
00:07:00 - to be a local hard drive and the root partition is going
00:07:04 - to be on that local hard drive. Again usually we're talking
00:07:07 - about the majority of the time. There's going to be possibly
00:07:12 - the boot directory.
00:07:13 - Again modern distributions not always but, this is the folder
00:07:18 - or the mounted file system in a separate partition. There
00:07:21 - is going to be a boot location and whether it's a separate
00:07:24 - partition or not, you know it, it depends. And it really doesn't
00:07:27 - matter with modern hardware and, and modern Linux distributions.
00:07:31 - The thing that changes a little bit here is we may have
00:07:35 - the home directory. Now this may be on a file server that is
00:07:40 - NFS. I think it's possible to mount an individual
00:07:45 - user home directory over
00:07:47 - Windows or Samba, SMB, which isn't quite as common.
00:07:52 - You can, I've even seen some people mount this over SSH,
00:07:56 - but generally in a Linux environment NFS is going
00:08:00 - to be one of the most common ways that you're going to mount
00:08:03 - this home directory from a central file server. The advantage
00:08:08 - of that is everybody's home directory is going to be here. So
00:08:11 - you're going to see, home slash spowers. You're going to see home
00:08:19 - slash santa, you are going to see all these different folders inside home
00:08:24 - and no matter where the person sits, they can get access to
00:08:27 - their files. So, so that's one of the advantages of a centrally
00:08:30 - located home server or home, homed file system mounted
00:08:35 - over the network. And this is the kind of thing you're going
00:08:37 - to want the server that is storing all these to be really really
00:08:41 - fast because your home directory gets written to a lot every time you save documents,
00:08:45 - every time you save configurations it's getting, being read from
00:08:49 - and written to very often. So you want this to be a really
00:08:52 - fast hardware, really fast network and that will give you the
00:08:56 - best performance. But that's one of the, the differences
00:09:00 - if you have a network work station. We're going to look at
00:09:04 - you know a centrally mounted home directory. The other directories
00:09:07 - are going to be pretty much the same there, you're going to want to have
00:09:09 - that local swap space in case you run out of RAM and this is
00:09:13 - just a partition but it's not necessarily mounted in the file
00:09:16 - system. So it's just we need to remember that we're going to
00:09:18 - have this swap location on the hard drive. And then we'll move to
00:09:23 - one more.
00:09:24 - So we'll say for example we have a server. Now a server is going to have
00:09:28 - still that root directory, it's going to be mounted on probably a local
00:09:31 - hard drive. We're going to have possibly
00:09:35 - the home directory mounted from somewhere else or possibly
00:09:38 - it's not going to be a separate mount. Possibly this is
00:09:43 - either just on the root directory or possibly the home directory
00:09:48 - that we have here is on its own partition that's really fast
00:09:51 - like on something with, with RAID or you know something that's
00:09:54 - just really fast, alright and it serves it out. We're also, let's, if it's
00:09:58 - a web server we may have the var directory on its own partition
00:10:03 - or own hard drive system. The reason being because this gets
00:10:07 - written to a lot. Again, this is very volatile changing all the
00:10:10 - time with log files, web files database things being written
00:10:14 - to constantly. This is going to be something that gets a lot
00:10:17 - of use and it's, it's nice to have it separated sometimes
00:10:22 - from the rest of your computer, you know. So you're going want that
00:10:25 - separate so you could move it if your server gets moved or
00:10:28 - you know you could erase everything without, without damaging
00:10:31 - things in the home directory or the root directory. And var
00:10:34 - is one of those things it's nice to have separated out. And
00:10:37 - for the most part the user directory nowadays is stored on
00:10:42 - just the root directory. But if this is something you can have
00:10:44 - this on a slower drive because again it doesn't get written
00:10:47 - to very often. Sometimes you want to have this mounted
00:10:51 - from a network in a read only fashion. Now the advantage there
00:10:55 - is let's say you have a bunch of servers doing the same thing,
00:10:58 - well you can give them all the same user directory and they
00:11:01 - have all the same things like user bin, we'll say the apache
00:11:07 - web server. Okay and they all have the same versions and since you don't
00:11:10 - write to the binary files you just read them, they can be read
00:11:13 - only, everybody can be updated in one fell swoop. You don't
00:11:17 - see that as much anymore because speed of networks and
00:11:21 - hard drives have increased so much, but it's important to know
00:11:23 - that that's something that is possible to do, mount the
00:11:26 - user directory read only. So that's how it's mounted on to
00:11:31 - our, our file system here. It can be either;
00:11:35 - it could just be a folder inside your root directory in a partition
00:11:39 - or it could be a folder that mounts from something remotely. It could
00:11:43 - be separate partitions and I want to show you a picture not
00:11:46 - because I'm, I'm great at drawing, but I want to show you a picture
00:11:51 - of what it would look like if we partitioned our hard drive out,
00:11:54 - just to help give you a visual. So here's our hard drive, now the square.
00:11:58 - Now you know inside a hard drive there's like a big spinning disk but
00:12:00 - I just want to use this kind of like a pie chart that's square,
00:12:03 - we'll call it a brownie chart because it's square.
00:12:07 - So, if we have a separate boot partition which isn't necessary
00:12:11 - usually anymore, but it's still commonly used in a lot of distributions.
00:12:14 - It needs to be the very first partition on our drive. So we are going to chop
00:12:18 - off a little bit here, again this is going to be like a hundred
00:12:20 - megabytes.
00:12:22 - Then we're going to take the next section, this is just
00:12:25 - a desktop work station. We are going to just, wow that was a horrible
00:12:30 - line. We're going to cut off about this much of it, that wasn't much
00:12:34 - better, and this whole thing is going to be our root directory.
00:12:39 - Right. This is going to be the root directory and inside of
00:12:43 - this is going to be you know, home.
00:12:47 - And it's going to be you know var, all those things are going
00:12:50 - to live inside on this same partition. And then we're going to
00:12:53 - make this partition, again every computer should have,
00:12:58 - I just want to make it look a little different than the others. This is going to be
00:13:02 - Swap. Just virtual memory for if the computer runs out of,
00:13:07 - of usable memory space, okay; and that's going to be just your
00:13:10 - basic desktop machine. Now if this is a server, we'll do a couple
00:13:15 - things. I erased a little bit too far there, but what we can do is we have
00:13:20 - all these partitions, right. So we still want to have the swap space.
00:13:23 - We still want to have a boot partition but we could chop this
00:13:26 - in half and say this is going to be home.
00:13:31 - And this is going to be the root directory. Or we could chop it further
00:13:37 - and say
00:13:38 - this is the root directory and maybe this is now the var
00:13:44 - directory, see? So we can chop up a hard drive into these
00:13:48 - different things but from the user perspective it's always
00:13:51 - just going to be a file system hierarchy and it looks, they're
00:13:55 - all just going to look like folders mounted on the thing which
00:13:57 - is, it's, it's kind of nice because it is, it's transparent from
00:14:00 - the server standpoint. The server and the applications running
00:14:03 - don't really have any idea how or what type of file system is mounted
00:14:07 - there, they just know that the home directory is where
00:14:10 - users' files are stored. So that's really convenient.
00:14:13 - Now another thing you can do. You can have separate partitions or you can have
00:14:16 - separate hard drives. So let's say this is another hard drive,
00:14:20 - maybe we want to put home on this hard drive.
00:14:23 - Okay, we don't want this to be home anymore.
00:14:26 - Okay, so then a whole other hard drive could be home and then
00:14:29 - we could you know, say this is plugged into our computer over
00:14:33 - here. I really shouldn't be allowed to draw computers,
00:14:36 - but we'll say that's a computer. Let's say we want to take
00:14:39 - the home directory and put it on to a new faster server. We
00:14:42 - just disconnect it from this one and plug it into another computer
00:14:46 - and say here's my home directory and all of the user files have
00:14:49 - been restored on the new server. So it's really convenient,
00:14:52 - Linux is very flexible in how you design things and
00:14:57 - basically now you understand all of the different types of
00:15:00 - file systems that you can mount. You can mount them over the network,
00:15:03 - you can mount them locally, you can mount them on separate hard drives and
00:15:07 - you might understand, hopefully you understand, some of the advantages
00:15:10 - of mounting in different partitions or different drives and how
00:15:13 - you'd want to design that for different purposes. Again Linux is very
00:15:16 - flexible, but a good design in the first place makes
00:15:20 - it a lot easier later to move things like my home file,
00:15:24 - my home directory example so you can move it to another server.
00:15:27 - It's very, very nice. So what do we have? We have, we talked about
00:15:31 - the boot directory, right, and that's going to be about a hundred
00:15:35 - megabytes or a little bit bigger doesn't really matter but
00:15:38 - this has to be on a local hard drive because it's the first
00:15:42 - thing that the computer's going to look at. Now, I said you
00:15:45 - know some older computers can't handle like a, this just being
00:15:48 - a folder on the root partition of a big hard drive. But
00:15:52 - also let's say you're running software RAID on your local computer,
00:15:56 - well you can, it can't read the boot partition off software RAID because
00:15:59 - the kernel has to be loaded in order to recognize that. So, in,
00:16:03 - in a case of like software RAID or some really bizarre drive
00:16:08 - controller, you're going to want to have the boot partition
00:16:11 - separate on a hard drive that bios can recognize with all that kernel
00:16:16 - stuff right in there. So that's why it's really, it's good practice to
00:16:18 - have this, a separate partition or even a separate hard drive
00:16:21 - I suppose if all you have is other RAID stuff. Then we have
00:16:25 - home. I'm just going to go over this really quick because we went over it all already.
00:16:28 - This is where user files are stored, we have var, this is where
00:16:32 - we have log files stored, databases usually store their
00:16:36 - stuff in here, our web server files are often in there and it's
00:16:39 - nice to have this separate on a server so if it fills up, because
00:16:43 - again you can get like gigabytes a day written just from web server
00:16:46 - logs. If it fills up it doesn't stop people from saving their
00:16:50 - documents in a separate partition. Because if this partition
00:16:52 - fills up, sure bad stuff is going to happen. But there's
00:16:55 - still room in the home partition. So people can save their
00:16:58 - work and that kind of thing. So that's a really nice reason to have
00:17:00 - that separate.
00:17:02 - There's a couple other partitions, again the root partition we
00:17:04 - talked about which is going to be on in summer, it has to. It's
00:17:07 - kind of like everything's underneath the root file, file system.
00:17:11 - Some we didn't talk about but are commonly seen, the opt directory
00:17:16 - or the opt partition or just the opt folder, in amongst or that's underneath
00:17:19 - root. This is where a lot of third party stuff goes if
00:17:22 - you get a program that's binary only or you know something that's not
00:17:26 - in your repositories. A lot of times it will put its stuff in this opt directory.
00:17:31 - We talked about User.
00:17:35 - That's where a lot of the binary programs like Apache or you know
00:17:39 - just ls or CD all those commands that generally aren't written
00:17:43 - to very often, only during updates but are read from a lot, they
00:17:45 - live in the user directory. And that looks to be about most of the stuff
00:17:51 - and then of course, SWAP which we don't ever want to forget
00:17:55 - because it's nice to have that virtual memory in case you use
00:17:58 - up all of your actual RAM.
00:18:01 - Alright, so make sure we have everything covered, we have partitions
00:18:04 - and disks, we talked about that. You can partition one hard drive
00:18:07 - into several partitions to separate things out or you can put them
00:18:10 - all together and just have them be folders in the root directory and
00:18:13 - you can also take separate disks and add them to a computer
00:18:17 - and mount them as separate file systems to separate things up
00:18:19 - for, for upgrade purposes or for transferring to another server.
00:18:22 - File systems, they can be local file systems, they can be remote
00:18:27 - network file systems or they can be file systems like swap
00:18:30 - that isn't really a file system, it's more of just an area
00:18:33 - that the computer users for virtual memory. Mount points, now
00:18:37 - again mount points it's important to realize that Linux mounts
00:18:40 - file systems on folders in your hierarchy. So we have
00:18:45 - the root directory and home right. Now home is a folder on the
00:18:49 - root directory. You can mount another file system on there or
00:18:53 - you can just allow it to live in the root directory and just
00:18:55 - be a folder that gets filled with files. But you can't mount a remote file
00:18:59 - system or a separate partition or a network file system on
00:19:03 - a folder if there's stuff in it, right. So it has to be an
00:19:07 - empty folder, like home has to be empty before you can mount another
00:19:10 - file system on to it. Swap space we talked about is just virtual
00:19:14 - memory that's on a local hard drive. There are some cases
00:19:17 - you can do it on the network but not very often. And then we
00:19:20 - talked about when some situations you would want to, you would want
00:19:25 - to have different configurations, like a desktop computer
00:19:28 - will be
00:19:29 - partitioned off and, and formatted slightly different than like a network
00:19:33 - work, work station which is different than a server configuration.
00:19:37 - Because, they just, they need different needs because there have, they
00:19:40 - serve different tasks etcetera, etcetera. So anyway, that is how to
00:19:44 - determine how to layout your hard disk. We're going to talk
00:19:46 - about actually mounting and manipulating file systems later
00:19:49 - on but you need to understand what each type of partition and
00:19:52 - what each special folder is for and, and so you can help plan
00:19:56 - out those hard drive and network mounts on your new system.
00:20:01 - Okay, I hope that this has been informative for you and I'd like
00:20:04 - to thank you for viewing.

Install a Boot Manager

Manage Shared Libraries

Debian Package Management

RPM & YUM Package Management

Work on the Command Line

Process Text Streams Using Filters

Perform Basic File Management

Use Streams, Pipes, and Redirects

Create, Monitor, and Kill Processes

Process Priorities

Search Text Files with Regular Expressions

Perform Basic File Editing Operations Using vi

Create Partitions and Filesystems

Maintain the Integrity of Filesystems

Control Mounting and Unmounting of Filesystems

Manage Disk Quotas

Manage File Permissions and Ownership

Create and Change Hard and Symbolic Links

Find System Files and Place Files in the Correct Location

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Shawn Powers

Shawn Powers

CBT Nuggets Trainer

Certifications:
LPIC-1; CompTIA Linux+, A+; Cisco CCNA

Area Of Expertise:
Linux

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