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Re: Partitioning

bleach <wrl@BellSouth.net> wrote:

 > Paul, Linux doesn't recognize or even care about "primary" partitions.
 > "fdisk", "cfdisk", etc. recognize them but only because BIOS deals with
 > drives and partitions in this fashion.

  Wrong.  BIOS has no notion of partitions at all.  Linux _does_ 'care'
about partitions - it just isn't particular about which _type_ of
partition it is installed to (like you wrote).

 > The reason why there can only
 > be four primary partitions is due to the design of the PC BIOS.

  Wrong again - it is due to the design of the partition table, and was
(presumably) done by MS.  It has _nothing_ to to with the BIOS.  When
they ran into the limitation [*], they created extended partitions, of
which there can be as many as you like.

 > Even lilo
 > ignores the DOS, Windoz, OS2, characteristic of "not seeing" the
 > "inactive" primary partitions (of course OS2 boot manager effectively does
 > also).

  Wrong again - DOS and Windows have no problem whatsoever with seeing
inactive primary partitions. I have four primary DOS partitions on my
first HD, and DOS sees all of them and assigns them drive letters.  Only
OS/2 has this silly limitation, and OS/2's Boot Manager 'hides' (changes
the type from 4 to 0x14, or 6 to 0x16) all other primary DOS partitions
when booting one.  The reason LILO doesn't care about partition tables
is that it creates a list of the physical locations of sectors to load
when booting.


[*] Actually, the real reason extended partitions were created was as a
quick fix for the (then) MS-DOS limitation of not being able to access
disks that were larger than 32 MB.  They removed this limitation around
DOS 4.0, IIRC.

Gertjan Klein <gklein@xs4all.nl>
The Boot Control home page: http://www.xs4all.nl/~gklein/bcpage.html

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