Understanding Linux Hard Disk Partitioning and Linux File Systems – System Administration Training

The Linux Hard Disk Partitioning Process

A hard disk is partitioned and then it is assigned a filesystem type and then it is formatted.

Assigning a filesystem type to a partition specifies the “type” of it and prepares (formats) it so that it can accept files.

Do not confuse assigning a filesystem “type” with assigning a filesystem (formatting).

Linux Hard Disk Partitioning – File Systems and Filesystem Types

Most Linux documentation and utilities refer to a file system as filesystem (one word).

A filesystem type is assigned to and specified for a partition to provide it with support for the file structure of itself (for its directories and subdirectories) and for all of the files that will be used on it, such as the Linux program files and data files.

For example, the current default filesystem type for many distributions, such as Red Hat, Fedora and others, is ext3 (extended filesystem 3).

Prior to ext3, the default filesystem was ext2 (extended filesystem 2). Some other distributions have a different default filesystem, but ext3 is on the way to becoming the de facto standard for Linux.

Linux Hard Disk Partition “Rules”

A Linux partition can be all or part of a hard disk.

If you have two hard disks in a system, then one disk can have one partition, filesystem type and operating system on it that uses the entire disk and the other disk can have a different set of these items, that uses the entire disk.

Both disks can also have more than one partition, filesystem type and operating system.

If you only have one Linux hard disk in a system, then you can create two or more partitions on the disk, assign each one a different filesystem type and install a different operating system on each.

A partition cannot contain more than one filesystem type and does not typically contain more than one operating system. However, you can have a single OS on a system that uses multiple filesystem types on multiple partitions (one filesystem type per partition).

The “standard” Windows and Linux operating systems require at least one partition each. If a system requires both of these operating systems, then you need at least one partition for each of them.

The Linux hard disk partitioning concepts and commands covered here apply to: Red Hat, Fedora, Slackware, Ubuntu, and Debian Linux – and ALL other versions.

Linux Training Online – Using the Linux CD Command to Change Directory – Linux System Administration

As a new user looking for Linux training, you need to learn how to use commands. And one of the most commonly used file system commands is the CD (change directory) command.

Using the Linux CD Command

The CD (change directory) command is used to change from your current directory (folder) into a different directory.

You need to change into a directory to do Linux administration tasks like:

  • create a new file or remove an existing file
  • copy or move a file to a different directory
  • edit and modify a file, such as a text configuration file for a Linux server
  • create a new directory or remove an existing directory
  • copy or move a directory to a different directory

Linux Commands Training Tips: The System Administration commands, examples and concepts covered here apply to ALL Linux distributions, including: Red Hat, Fedora, Ubuntu, Edubuntu, Kubuntu, Slackware, Debian, SUSE and openSUSE.

Linux CD Command Example – Changing into a Directory Below the Current Directory

To change directory into a directory “below” the current one, you type in CD and a space and the name of the directory you want to change into.

For example, to change into a directory named “letters”, you run the following:

$ CD letters

To change into a different directory, just replace “letters” with a different name.

Linux Training Tips: A directory inside the current one is considered “below” the current directory, and is called a sub directory.

Linux CD Command Example – Changing Up One Directory (Level)

To change directory up one directory (level), you type in CD and a space and then two dots (periods).

For example, if you have moved into the directory named “letters” and want to go back (up) to your previous directory, you run the following:

$ CD ..

Linux Training Tips: The directory above the current one is also called the “parent”.

Beyond This “Linux Training Online” ArticleThe Linux CD command is used in many other ways to navigate around the file system.

To continue your Linux training, you also need to learn how to use the CD command to: change to the root directory, change using an absolute path, and also easily change into a directory parallel to the current directory.

You can clearly and easily see all of the concepts and commands shown above (and lots more!) by watching a Linux training video.

With this method of Linux training, you can see how to use a command step-by-step and also hear how to run the command. This is a very easy way to learn how to use Linux.

Eliminate the Cost, Hassle and Time Associated With Printing and Distributing Enterprise Reports

Like most large businesses, the magazine relies on large reports to distribute information to manage their business. They produce over 1,000 unique financial reports in their central data center for use by their staff around the world. These reports are currently printed on large production printers then physically distributed to their offices around the country.

This process proved to be very inefficient and costly. The cost of producing these reports strains the company’s IT budget, both in terms of paper, direct printer costs (including acquisition and maintenance) printer supplies and in terms of personnel costs associated with the delivering of reports around the company. In addition, the cost of physical distribution (courier) also added to the inefficiencies.

Secondly, the availability of the report information to the end user was too slow for today’s business climate. Business processes were being delayed while the knowledge worker waited for the report they needed to complete their assigned task. The reports were distributed in a very traditional way; they were centrally printed and manually distributed around the company, both locally, regionally, nationally and internationally. This “print and distribute” approach was a hindrance in terms of getting their reports out to knowledge workers in an efficient and timely fashion. The problem was exacerbated during month end closings because trial balances would be run, put in the queue to be printed, delivered to financial management personnel and reviewed.
After the appropriate corrections were made, the reports were re-run, sent through to be printed and delivered to management for review again.

The Challenge (continued)

This process was repeated until no more changes needed to be made and the final version of the report is printed for general distribution to the appropriate personnel. Keeping track of interim report versions, and ensuring proper security of those interim versions proved to be very challenging, and time consuming for management. Reports that were printed and then distributed to outlying offices (both in North America and around the World) could take hours and even days to end up on the knowledge worker’s desk, delaying business processes and reducing productivity around the organization.

The Solution

Plus Technologies worked very closely with the customer to integrate RM Plus, our electronic report management and distribution system and OM Plus our advanced print spooler software into the customer’s report distribution environment. This solution performs multiple functions after report creation through to the availability of a report for a knowledge worker and paid for itself in about 9 months.

A pilot was implemented for testing in a controlled deployment. Twenty reports were chosen along with twenty knowledge workers to be part of the pilot. Upon successful completion of this pilot, the solution was rolled out to over 200 knowledge workers for more than 1000 reports.

RM Plus performs the following functions:

RMPlus provides quick, easy access to computer reports!

The Mainframe creates the report and “prints” it to a virtual destination within OM Plus. This required no changes to the mainframe application.

OM Plus re-labels the report with a descriptive name. This makes the report name more intuitive to the knowledge worker.

OM Plus delivers the report to the RM Plus Document Repository. No operator intervention is required.

Reports are indexed, assigned security, and stored in the file system. At this point, the system notes report versioning. This permits managers to review and re-run (if necessary) financial reports prior to general distribution.

Users can access reports from their desk-tops or from their browser and view just the reports or pages they need to perform their function. All printing is done locally on network lasers when/if needed.

Report Manager Plus-Easy and affordable report distribution and management

RM Plus is an electronic report management and distribution system that connects every report generating application to every end user throughout your organization. It is an easy-to-use, flexible yet cost effective solution that captures reports from any enterprise application and stores them in a centralized repository accessible to your users 24/7!

RM Plus automatically captures report output from multiple enterprise system platforms, organizes and indexes the reports, applies security rules and distributes individual pages or bundles of report pages across your network or the Internet. End users can view, print and download reports – or selected portions of a report – on demand. Data contained in reports is easily found and extracted electronically and can be imported into spreadsheets or databases for further analysis. No more re-keying report data for further analysis!

The Benefits of RM Plus

o Eliminates the cost of printing, report distribution and storing enterprise reports–No more report distribution costs, printer maintenance, toner costs, binders, file cabinets consuming floor space or courier expenses. Don’t let the cost of printing your reports get out of line!

o Instant Access is provided to your report-hungry users. Users have rapid document delivery that is secure and instant access to their reports and documents from anywhere on the web.

o Increases Security and Compliance by controlling access to cabinets, folder, files and pages. Eliminates unauthorized viewing of customer data and provides a detailed, time stamped audit trail of all document delivery and end user activity.

o Improves Customer Service by accessing documents in seconds eliminating the manual retrieval of reports. Automating report delivery to your knowledge workers increases their productivity and the company’s bottom line.

o Streamlines Report Access from Multiple Systems as RM Plus provides a single access point to all report types, no matter where they came from. Whether they are mainframe reports, UNIX applications or Windows Server application reports RM Plus will capture them and make them easily and almost instantly available.

o Data contained in reports is easily found, viewed and securely stored to prevent unauthorized viewing and it is easy for document sharing to take place amongst multiple people.

o Mine and export data in reports to other applications like Excel for further data analysis.

o Creates One Centralized Report Management Repository that is very cost effective. Your users learn one system to access all their archived reports.

o Why RM Plus Report Management?

Here’s why report distribution and management makes sense, especially with the cost effective solution from Plus Technologies:

Eliminates printing distributing and storing of enterprise reports – Significant cost reductions associated with electronic vs physical distribution of reports

No more printer costs, binders, file cabinets consuming floor space, or courier expenses – Improve the bottom line and increase velocity of delivery of business critical report data

Quickly view Reports online, virtually immediately after report is created – Multiple people have access to the same report immediately and simultaneously improving access to business critical data

Data contained in reports is easily found and extracted – Extract data from reports electronically and import into spreadsheets or databases for further analysis. No more re-keying report data

Securely manage who viewed a report and when – No unauthorized viewing of reports for compliance or business reasons

Other Solutions

OM Plus – is advanced, intelligent spooling software designed to seamlessly complement application software programs used by corporations and institutions. Without impacting the application software program, OM Plus will ingest outgoing enterprise print jobs and provide advanced job delivery functions. OM Plus will provide ‘confirmed delivery’ of documents and provide an enterprise level monitor of all print jobs and destinations. In addition, OM Plus provides users and/or administrators a host of tools to automate the printing function. OM Plus users receive benefit from increased help desk productivity, centralized control of print environment, intelligent routing, reduced print related errors, printing assurance, increased security and more.