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Bug#509378: should use labels for all partitions in fstab

Christian Perrier wrote:
Quoting Daniel Pocock (daniel@pocock.com.au):
Package: debian-installer

I believe it would be much safer to use labels for partitions rather than using the device nodes.

Reassigning to the correct package. We might even have an already
existing bug report about this but I can't check right now.

As most wishlist features, this is of course something we can do in
the queeze release cycle....and, as always, it will not happen by
magic: it needs someone to do it, and given the current state of the
d-i resources....don't expect too much....unless you're ready to do
the work..:-)

This one could be quite disruptive for some users installing for the first time, so hopefully it will be given consideration.

Here are some more specific ideas for implementation, if an approach is agreed on, I might code something:

- it needs to be automatic - therefore, the filesystems need to be named automatically, perhaps use the convention HOSTNAME_PATH for top level filesystems, and HOSTNAME_001/002, etc for filesystems with deeper mount points. E.g. if hostname=host1, / would be host1_root, /usr would be host1_usr

- if using labels, the filesystem definition window should not allow the user to proceed if the label is missing

- as an alternative to the above, use the UUID instead - this is always present, and it doesn't have the length issues

- maybe put a comment in /etc/fstab to show where the filesystem was found (device node) during install, particularly important for UUID, e.g.:

# /boot was on /dev/sdb1 during install
LABEL=myhost_boot /boot ext3 defaults 0 0


# /boot was on /dev/sdb1 during install
UUID=558e4695-e2c8-4e79-93cb-8b89313dce6a /boot ext3 defaults 0 0

- if using pre-formatted filesystems, must check that the label and/or UUID is present before writing fstab, and either instruct the user to label their filesystems manually, or even better, prompt them to enter labels and do it for them

- in the case of existing filesystems, an automatic approach should be able to use either UUID or label, if one and not the other is present

- must also check that each label and UUID is unique within the host, display an error and refuse to create fstab if not the case

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