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How to configure LVM on Pardus 2011

Pardus Pardus is a Linux distribution with roots in the National Research Institute of Electronics and Cryptology (UEKAE), Turkey. It is one of many distributions that does not have support for the Linux Logical Volume Manager (LVM). However, that is about to change because YALI, the installation program in the next stable version, Pardus 2011, will have full support for LVM. But better than having full support for LVM is the fact that LVM will be the default disk partitioning scheme.

This article presents a step by step guide on how to install Pardus 2011 on a custom LVM disk partitioning scheme.

If LVM is the default disk partitioning scheme, why would it be necessary to create a custom configuration? Because in the default installation of Pardus 2011 (beta), the installer creates just two logical volumes, one for / and the other for swap, and allocates all the available disk space to these two logical volumes. A configuration that defeats some of the benefits of LVM. The main objective of this tutorial is to show how to create not just a single logical volume (for /), but also one for /home, and to allocate just enough disk space to each (logical volume) needed to get the system installed. This would leave a significant percentage of the available disk space unallocated. After installation, the unallocated disk space will then be used to create additional logical volumes, or grow existing ones – if there is a need to.

Note: While this tutorial is based on an installation of a beta release, I do not see any changes being made to the installer between now and when the stable version becomes available. I did not experience any issues with the installer.

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Ok, let us get started already. First, grab a copy of Pardus 2011 (beta) DVD ISO image, and boot your computer from it. As is customary for all disk partitioning tutorials that I have written, the first image comes from the step where disk partitioning starts. Steps before this one bear no relevance to this tutorial and have, therefore, been omitted. In this step, you will have to select the last option, Create Custom Layout, to start. Click Next to continue.

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Choose partition method

If the hard drive on your computer has already been initialized, the installer will present the options shown in the image below. Select the free space and click on New > Standard > Partition.

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Create standard partition

When setting up LVM, the first partition to create will be a non-LVM partition for /boot. And that is what we are going to create in the step. On a new installation of Pardus 2011, the installer allocates 500 MB to /boot. That seems to be the recommended size for /boot, and I see no reason not to do the same. If, however, you are installing on an old computer with very limited disk space, you can go as low as 100 MB, even 50 MB. If you go that low, keep in mind that you could face some problems when it comes time to upgrade the kernel.

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For the /boot and the logical volumes that will be created for this test installation, the default file system type is ext4, and that is what I will stick to. The other journaling file systems supported are ext3 and xfs. The mount point for this partition is, of course, /boot. Keep in mind that the installer will always create the first partition as a primary partition, so it is not necessary to enable “Force to be a primary partition.” Click OK when you are done.

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Creating /boot

Now that the non-LVM partition has been created, select the free space, then click on New > LVM > Physical Volume, to create the physical volume.

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Create LVM partition

At this step, the file system will be pre-selected as lvmpv (physical volume for LVM), and I have elected to allocate the remaining disk space for use by LVM. “Force to be a primary partition” is unchecked by default, but I have also decided to enable it. If this option is unchecked, the physical volume will be /dev/sda5, and /dev/sda2 if it is enabled. Either way, it really does not matter. OK

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Create physical volume

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