Setting up disks

Disk partitioning


This manual assumes you are proficient with disk partitions and either the parted, fdisk, or cfdisk utility. If not, you may wish to read the Linux Partition How-To and the cfdisk(8) man page.

In general, Red Hat-based systems contain at least three partitions:

  • A bootloader partition, approximately 500 MB, marked as bootable, mounted at /boot
  • A virtual memory partition (called swap), approximately the size of the memory you have installed
  • A root data partition, which fills the rest of your available disk space, mounted at /

Partition your disks appropriately.


If you wish to set up RAID or LVM, this is the point where you should set those up.

Partition formatting

Format the partitions you have created. A few notes:

  • The bootloader partition should be ext3 or ext4. More recent versions of GRUB (especially GRUB 2) may support additional partitions — check the documentation for your version of GRUB for a list of supported partitions.
  • Use the mkswap command to format a swap partition.

Mount the partitions

Mount each partition under a specific directory given its mount point. For example, given the above standard partition layout of a root data partition and a bootloader partition:

mkdir /mnt/root
mount $ROOT_PARTITION /mnt/root
mkdir /mnt/root/boot
mount $BOOT_PARTITION /mnt/root/boot


In this manual we use /mnt/root as the root directory. You can use any directory you like, but you will need to replace /mnt/root with your directory of choice throughout this manual.