Linux Partition mini-HOWTO: How I did it on my machine

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There was this old ISA bus 386/40 sitting on my shelf that I abandoned two years ago because it no longer cut it. I was planning to turn it into a small X-less server for my household LAN.

Here is how I did it: I took that 386 and put 16 MB RAM into it. Added a cheapo EIDE disk, the smallest I could get (800 MB) and an ethernet card. Added an old Hercules because I still had a monitor for it. Installed Linux on it and there I have my local NFS, SMB, HTTP, LPD/LPR and NNTP server as well as my mail router and POP3 server. With an additional ISDN card the machine become my TCP/IP router and firewall, too.

Most of the disk space on this machine went into the /var directories, /var/spool/mail, /var/spool/news and /var/httpd/html. I put /var on a separate partition and made this one large. There will be almost no users on this machine, so I created no home partition and mounted /home from some other workstation via NFS.

Linux without X plus several locally installed utilities will be fine with a 250 MB partition as /. The machine has 16 MB of RAM, but it will be running many servers. 16 MB swap should be in order, 32 MB should be plenty. We are not short on disk space, so the machine will get 32 MB. Out of sentimentality a MS-DOS partition of some 20 MB is kept on it. I decided to import /home from another machine, so the remaining 500+ MB will end up as /var. This is more than sufficient for a household USENET news feed.

READ  Linux Gazette COPYING Conditions

We get


Device     Mounted on                      Size
/dev/hda1  /dos_c                           25 MB
/dev/hda2  - (Swapspace)                    32 MB
/dev/hda3  /                               250 MB
/dev/hda4  - (Extended Container)          500 MB
/dev/hda5  /var                            500 MB

homeserver:/home /home                     1.6 GB

I am backing up this machine via the network using the tape in homeserver. Since everything on this machine has been installed from CD-ROM all I have to save are some configuration files from /etc, my customized locally installed *.tgz files from /root/Source/Installed and /var/spool/mail as well as /var/httpd/html. I copy these files into a dedicated directory /home/backmeup on homeserver every night, where the regular homeserver backup picks them up.

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