How to label partitions in Linux


In linux, to label a partition, there are 3 tools that can be used. The tools are e2label, tune2fs and mke2fs.

To use e2label to label the second partition of the first hardisk with label DATA:
# e2label /dev/sda2 DATATo use tune2fs to do the similar job as above:
# tune2fs -L DATA /dev/sda2

The third tool, mke2fs is actually a tool to build ext2/ext3 filesystem. So, if you want to build the partition’s filesystem as ext2/ext3 and at the same time label it, this command can be used. Be careful though, because it will delete all existing data on that particular partition
# mke2fs -L DATA /dev/sda2

To view the label that you have set, there are 3 ways which are using e2label, blkid and viewing /dev/disk/by-label.

To check using e2label:
# e2label /dev/sda2
DATA

blkid tool is even more useful, because it can list out all the partitions that you have in the machine together with their labels,uuid and filesystem type:
# blkid
/dev/sda1: LABEL=”/” UUID=”1CC08F13C08EF276″ TYPE=”ext3″
/dev/sda2: LABEL=”DATA” UUID=”2063f830-fe5d-438e-b727-571b313cb89e” TYPE=”ext3″
/dev/sda3: TYPE=”swap” LABEL=”SWAP” UUID=”3e266b53-42e0-4f09-8fe3-d1cf79cb5d37″

To view the /dev/disk/by-label
# ls -l /dev/disk/by-label
total 0
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 10 2009-07-24 05:38 / -> ../../sda1
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 10 2009-07-24 05:38 DATA -> ../../sda2
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 10 2009-07-24 05:38 SWAP -> ../../sda3

Note that the label will stay with the partition although the disk is moved to another computer.

To use it in /etc/fstab:
LABEL=/ / ext3 defaults 1 1
LABEL=DATA /DATA ext3 defaults 1 2
LABEL=SWAP swap swap defaults 0 0

About Alex Hunt

Hi All I am Manish Kumar Jha aka Alex Hunt. I am currently working in VMware Software India Pvt Ltd as Operations System Engineer (vCloud Air Operations). I have around 5 Years of IT experience and have exposure on VMware vSphere, vCloud Director, RHEL and modern data center technologies like Cisco UCS and Cisco Nexus 1000v and NSX. If you find any post informational to you please press like and share it across social media and leave your comments if you want to discuss further on any post. Disclaimer: All the information on this website is published in good faith and for general information purpose only. I don’t make any warranties about the completeness, reliability and accuracy of this information. Any action you take upon the information you find on this blog is strictly at your own risk. The Views and opinions published on this blog are my own and not the opinions of my employer or any of the vendors of the product discussed.
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One Response to How to label partitions in Linux

  1. Pingback: How to create a FIlesystems in Linux 1 | One stop for Linux

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