Thursday, October 23, 2008

KUbuntu: LVM Horror and Suspense

... I get by with a little help from my friends ... - The Beattles

So the song says and pretty apt for a general Linux newbie like myself. I've got 4 book references and the whole Internet library but it really comes down to situational experience that matches what you basically want to do to get it done in the most cost-effective (and I'm talking about avoiding loss of data) time frame.

Apart from the new dual WAN router and the upgrades for the WHS there was the bit about two-(2) Seagate Barracuda 1.5 TB drives that needed to get added onto the /root directory of my Kubuntu installation.

Now the idea of logical and physical mapping gets quite fuzzy when dealing with disk drives in Linux. Probably as fuzzy as making sure you don't have packet storms or route loops while configuring your router -- I'll get to that separately. From a MS Windows world I've already been initiated to Dynamic Disks as far back 1999~2002 when larger drive sizes started to come out, Disk Expansion on the WHS (Server 2003 based) is also interesting.

Though lacking the pictures, I was basically saved by and old guide. But before jumping into using the terminal commands the Windows User in me certainly went straight out looking for a GUI implementation ... that got me to porting system-config-lvm from Fedora. Yes EVMS is evil, and by that I'm saying it was weeks before I up and gave up on it some time ago while trying to configure LinuxMCE and Mythbuntu.

One key thing to note is that system-config-lvm gui actually lets you do everything easily! However some work does need to be done in terms of pre-formatting the disk with fdisk and setting the disk type to LVM Linux (type: 8e). After that, assuming like me you just want to get more general disk space and haven't configured fancy parititions , extending the /root partition will required a live CD distro that has LVM packages pre-built. For me this was an earlier copy of KnoppMyth versus Knoppix in the guide. Then its simply going to be a disk check using e2fsck and then a call to resize2fs and get all that disk space registered for actual use (if you don't run it I almost guarantee you'll be running into some horrific data loss issues, so just do it so everything gets tagged and registered where they need to be on the system).

My thanks to Andy P. and Morton S. who were kind enough to offer assistance -- I'm going to get back to you guys on other stuff (such as making sense of PGP vs GnuPG) soon don't you worry :-)

But for now, time to decompress archives and hunt for a couple of mobile pests for some tests ...

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