hardy beta fstab and device identification during boot

Alan E. Davis lngndvs at gmail.com
Sat Mar 29 01:32:22 UTC 2008

I edited the fstab on a beta install.  I have one IDE drive and one SATA
drive on this machine.  FIrst, I wanted not to have the icons on my desktop
by capacity: that was useless to me.  So I decided to go ahead and mount all
the partitions off my home directory.

I think I've cleaned up the greater mess, by just mounting those partitions
off of /mnt and going through a learning process about UUIDs.  However,
during boot, the IDE disk partitions are assigned /dev/sda (the designation
formerly of my only other disk, a SATA drive), while the SATA driver that
was former /dev/sda is now /dev/sdb.  This is mostly not a problem; however,
one problem is particularly thorny:

/dev/sda5 (former designation, the SATA drive) is the swap partition, and it
apparently gets mounted early.  Then the assignments are preempted, and this
drive becomes /dev/sdb.  At filesystem check time, the partition NOW known
as /dev/sda5---on the IDE drive---cannot be checked, and XDM does not start.

Another problem bit me earlier, when the attempt to simply edit the fstab
with /dev/sda, etc., was foiled, as of, apparently, ubuntu 8.04 Beta (this
problem hasn't bitten me in the past, but then again, I may not have edited
the fstab while i was running the alphas).  I had first tried to use LABEL=
in the fstab, as a major HOWTO in the Ubuntu Forums suggested: it didn't
work, so I subsequently went back to UUIDs.  Somehow, I had mistakenly used
the UUID for the wrong disk on /dev/sda2 (former designation).  Both df and
the gnome system monitor applet told me there were two /dev/sda2s!

So is fstab a fraud?  Where is the problem?

And more importantly, can someone help me to fix this?  I am happy to RTFM,
if I can find one.

Alan Davis

Alan Davis, Kagman High School, Saipan lngndvs at gmail.com

"It's never a matter of liking or disliking ..."
---Santa Ynez Chumash Medicine Man

"We have no art. We do everything as well as we can." ---Balinese saying
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