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9.13. Creating a Custom Partition Layout

If you checked Let me customize the partitioning of the disks instead and clicked Continue in Section 9.10, “Storage and partitioning”, you will reach the Manual Partitioning screen.
By choosing to create a custom partitioning layout, you must now tell the installation program where to install Fedora. This is done by defining mount points for one or more disk partitions in which Fedora is installed. You may also need to create and/or delete partitions at this time.
If you have not yet planned how to set up your partitions, refer to Appendix A, An Introduction to Disk Partitions and Section 9.13.5, “Recommended Partitioning Scheme”. At a bare minimum, you need an appropriately-sized root partition, and usually a swap partition appropriate to the amount of RAM you have on the system.
The Fedora installer can handle the partitioning requirements for a typical installation.
The Manual Partitioning screen initially features a single pane on the left for partitions. This will either be empty except for information about creating mount points, or it will display existing partitions that the installer has detected. The total space and available space on the devices selected in Section 9.10, “Storage and partitioning” are displayed beneath this pane.

9.13.1. Adding and Configuring Partitions

Adding a partition is a two-step process. You first create the partition at a certain size and specify the mount point. The partition will appear in the left pane. Next, you customize it using the options in the right pane, where you can choose a name, device type, file system type, label, and whether to encrypt or reformat the partition. This differs from previous partitioning methods where the partition was created and customized in the same step.
If you have no existing partitions and want the system to create the required partitions and their mount points for you, use your mouse to click the link in the left pane for creating mount points automatically. This will generate a /boot partition, a / (root) partition, and a swap partition proportionate to the size of the device. These are the recommended partitions for a typical installation (refer to Section 9.13.5, “Recommended Partitioning Scheme”), but you can add additional partitions if you need to.
Partitioning on x86, AMD64, and Intel 64 Systems
The main partitioning screen.
Figure 9.20. Partitioning on x86, AMD64, and Intel 64 Systems

Alternatively, create individual partitions using the + button at the bottom of the pane. The Add a New Mount Point dialog will open. Enter a path for the mount point (for example, enter / for the root partition, /boot for the boot partition, and so on) and the desired size of the partition in megabytes or gigabytes (for example, type "2GB" to create a 2 gigabyte partition). After entering these details, click Add a mount point. This action creates the partition.
To change which devices a non-LVM mount point should be located on, click the configuration button at the bottom of the pane to open the Configure Mount Point dialog. Select one or more devices and click Select.
At the bottom of the screen, a link will state how many storage devices were selected in Installation Destination (refer to Section 9.10, “Storage and partitioning”). This link opens the Selected Devices dialog, where you can specify which device the bootloader should be installed on. Refer to Section 9.10.1, “x86, AMD64, and Intel 64 Boot Loader Installation” for more information.
To customize a partition, select it in the left-hand pane and the following customizable features will appear to the right (click Customize to reveal them all):
  • Name: Assign a name to the partition. Certain partitions will be named automatically when they are created and their name is unavailable for editing, such as /home being assigned the name sda1. Others can be named arbitrarily.
  • Mount point: Enter the partition's mount point. For example, if this partition should be the root partition, enter /; enter /boot for the /boot partition, and so on. For a swap partition the mount point should not be set — setting the filesystem type to swap is sufficient.
  • Label: Assign a label to the partition.
  • Desired capacity: Enter the desired size (in megabytes) of the partition.
  • Device Type: Choose between Standard Partition, LVM, and BTRFS. If two or more disks were selected for partitioning, RAID will also be available. For more information on these options, refer to Section 9.13.1.1, “File System Types”. Check the adjacent Encrypt box to encrypt the partition. You will be prompted to generate a password later.
  • File System: Using the pull-down menu, select the appropriate file system type for this partition. For more information on file system types, refer to Section 9.13.1.1, “File System Types”. Check the adjacent Reformat box to format an existing partition, or leave it unchecked to retain your data.
Click Apply Changes to save your changes and select another partition to customize.
When all partitions have been created and customized, click Finish Partitioning to return to the Installation Summary Menu. If you chose to encrypt any partitions, you will now be prompted to create a passphrase (refer to Section 9.11, “ Encrypt Partitions ”. To partition any other devices, select them in Installation Destination, return to the Manual Partitioning screen, and follow the same process outlined in this section.

9.13.1.1. File System Types

Fedora allows you to create different partition types and file systems. The following is a brief description of the different partition types and file systems available, and how they can be used.
Partition types
  • standard partition — A standard partition can contain a file system or swap space, or it can provide a container for software RAID or an LVM physical volume.
  • logical volume (LVM) — Creating an LVM partition automatically generates an LVM logical volume. LVM can improve performance when using physical disks. To create a logical volume, refer to Section 9.13.3, “ Create LVM Logical Volume ”. For more information regarding LVM, refer to the Fedora Deployment Guide.
  • software RAID — Creating two or more software RAID partitions allows you to create a RAID device. One RAID partition is assigned to each disk on the system. To create a RAID device, refer to Section 9.13.2, “ Create Software RAID ”. For more information regarding RAID, refer to the chapter RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) in the Fedora Deployment Guide.
  • Btrfs — Btrfs is under development as a file system with several device-like features, so is presented in the installer as a type of partition. It is capable of addressing and managing more files, larger files, and larger volumes than the ext2, ext3, and ext4 file systems. To create a Btrfs volume and read more information, refer to Section 9.13.4, “ Create a Btrfs subvolume”.
File systems
  • ext4 — The ext4 file system is based on the ext3 file system and features a number of improvements. These include support for larger file systems and larger files, faster and more efficient allocation of disk space, no limit on the number of subdirectories within a directory, faster file system checking, and more robust journaling. The ext4 file system is selected by default and is highly recommended.
  • ext3 — The ext3 file system is based on the ext2 file system and has one main advantage — journaling. Using a journaling file system reduces time spent recovering a file system after a crash as there is no need to fsck [3] the file system.
  • ext2 — An ext2 file system supports standard Unix file types (regular files, directories, symbolic links, etc). It provides the ability to assign long file names, up to 255 characters.
  • swap — Swap partitions are used to support virtual memory. In other words, data is written to a swap partition when there is not enough RAM to store the data your system is processing. Refer to the Fedora Deployment Guide for additional information.
  • BIOS Boot — A small partition requiring for booting a device with a GPT/GUID partition table.
  • xfs — XFS is a highly scalable, high-performance file system that supports filesystems up to 16 exabytes (approximately 16 million terabytes), files up to 8 exabytes (approximately 8 million terabytes) and directory structures containing tens of millions of entries. XFS supports metadata journaling, which facilitates quicker crash recovery. The XFS file system can also be defragmented and resized while mounted and active.
  • vfat — The VFAT file system is a Linux file system that is compatible with Microsoft Windows long filenames on the FAT file system.


[3] The fsck application is used to check the file system for metadata consistency and optionally repair one or more Linux file systems.