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sfdisk(8) [bsd man page]

SFDISK(8)						       System Administration							 SFDISK(8)

NAME
       sfdisk - display or manipulate a disk partition table

SYNOPSIS
       sfdisk [options] device [-N partition-number]

       sfdisk [options] command

DESCRIPTION
       sfdisk is a script-oriented tool for partitioning any block device.

       Since  version  2.26  sfdisk  supports MBR (DOS), GPT, SUN and SGI disk labels, but no longer provides any functionality for CHS (Cylinder-
       Head-Sector) addressing.  CHS has never been important for Linux, and this addressing concept does not make any sense for new devices.

       sfdisk (since version 2.26) aligns the start and end of partitions to block-device I/O limits when relative sizes are specified,  when  the
       default values are used or when multiplicative suffixes (e.g MiB) are used for sizes.  It is possible that partition size will be optimized
       (reduced or enlarged) due to alignment if the start offset is specified exactly in sectors and partition size relative or by multiplicative
       suffixes.

       The  recommended  way is not to specify start offsets at all and specify partition size in MiB, GiB (or so).  In this case sfdisk align all
       partitions to block-device I/O limits (or when I/O limits are too small then to megabyte boundary to keep disk layout portable).   If  this
       default	behaviour is unwanted (usually for very small partitions) then specify offsets and sizes in sectors.  In this case sfdisk entirely
       follows specified numbers without any optimization.

       sfdisk does not create the standard system partitions for SGI and SUN disk labels like fdisk(8) does.  It is necessary to explicitly create
       all partitions including whole-disk system partitions.

COMMANDS
       The commands are mutually exclusive.

       [-N partition-number] device
	      The  default sfdisk command is to read the specification for the desired partitioning of device from standard input, and then create
	      a partition table according to the specification.  See below for the description of the input format.  If standard input is a termi-
	      nal, then sfdisk starts an interactive session.

	      If  the option -N is specified, then the changes are applied to the partition addressed by partition-number.  The unspecified fields
	      of the partition are not modified.

	      Note that it's possible to address an unused partition with -N.  For example, an MBR always contains 4 partitions, but the number of
	      used  partitions	may be smaller.  In this case sfdisk follows the default values from the partition table and does not use built-in
	      defaults for the unused partition given with -N.	See also --append.

       -A, --activate device [partition-number...]
	      Switch on the bootable flag for the specified partitions.  If no partition-number is specified, then list  the  partitions  with	an
	      enabled flag.

       --delete device [partition-number...]
	      Delete all or the specified partitions.

       -d, --dump device
	      Dump the partitions of a device in a format that is usable as input to sfdisk.  See the section BACKING UP THE PARTITION TABLE.

       -g, --show-geometry [device...]
	      List the geometry of all or the specified devices. For backward compatibility the deprecated option --show-pt-geometry have the same
	      meaning as this one.

       -J, --json device
	      Dump the partitions of a device in JSON format.  Note that sfdisk is not able to use JSON as input format.

       -l, --list [device...]
	      List the partitions of all or the specified devices.  This command can be used together with --verify.

       -F, --list-free [device...]
	      List the free unpartitioned areas on all or the specified devices.

       --part-attrs device partition-number [attributes]
	      Change the GPT partition attribute bits.	If attributes is not specified, then print the current partition settings.  The attributes
	      argument	is a comma- or space-delimited list of bits.  The currently supported attribute bits are: RequiredPartition, NoBlockIOPro-
	      tocol, LegacyBIOSBootable and GUID-specific bits in the range from 48 to 63.  For example, the string "RequiredPartition,50,51" sets
	      three bits.

       --part-label device partition-number [label]
	      Change the GPT partition name (label).  If label is not specified, then print the current partition label.

       --part-type device partition-number [type]
	      Change  the  partition type.  If type is not specified, then print the current partition type.  The type argument is hexadecimal for
	      MBR, or a GUID for GPT.  For backward compatibility the options -c and --id have the same meaning as this one.

       --part-uuid device partition-number [uuid]
	      Change the GPT partition UUID.  If uuid is not specified, then print the current partition UUID.

       -r, --reorder device
	      Renumber the partitions, ordering them by their start offset.

       -s, --show-size [device...]
	      List the sizes of all or the specified devices in units of 1024 byte size.  This command is DEPRECATED in favour of blockdev(1).

       -T, --list-types
	      Print all supported types for the current disk label or the label specified by --label.

       -V, --verify [device...]
	      Test whether the partition table and partitions seem correct.

OPTIONS
       -a, --append
	      Don't create a new partition table, but only append the specified partitions.

       -b, --backup
	      Back  up	the  current  partition  table	sectors  before  starting  the	partitioning.	 The   default	 backup   file	 name	is
	      ~/sfdisk-<device>-<offset>.bak; to use another name see option -O, --backup-file.

       --color[=when]
	      Colorize	the  output.   The  optional  argument when can be auto, never or always.  If the when argument is omitted, it defaults to
	      auto.  The colors can be disabled; for the current built-in default see the --help output.  See also the COLORS section.

       -f, --force
	      Disable all consistency checking.

       --Linux
	      Deprecated and ignored option.  Partitioning that is compatible with Linux (and other modern operating systems) is the default.

       -n, --no-act
	      Do everything except writing to the device.

       --no-reread
	      Do not check through the re-read-partition-table ioctl whether the device is in use.

       --no-tell-kernel
	      Don't tell the kernel about partition changes. This option is recommended together with --no-reread to modify a  partition  on  used
	      disk. The modified partition should not be used (e.g. mounted).

       -O, --backup-file path
	      Override the default backup file name.  Note that the device name and offset are always appended to the file name.

       --move-data[=path]
	      Move  data  after partition relocation, for example when moving the beginning of a partition to another place on the disk.  The size
	      of the partition has to remain the same, the new and old location may overlap.  This option requires option -N in order to  be  pro-
	      cessed on one specific partition only.

	      The  path overrides the default log file name (the default is ~/sfdisk-<devname>.move).  The log file contains information about all
	      read/write operations on the partition data.

	      Note that this operation is risky and not atomic. Don't forget to backup your data!

	      In the example below, the first command creates a 100MiB free area before the first partition and moves the data it contains (e.g. a
	      filesystem), the next command creates a new partition from the free space (at offset 2048), and the last command reorders partitions
	      to match disk order (the original sdc1 will become sdc2).

	      echo '+100M,' | sfdisk --move-data /dev/sdc -N 1
	      echo '2048,' | sfdisk /dev/sdc --append
	      sfdisk /dev/sdc --reorder

       -o, --output list
	      Specify which output columns to print.  Use --help to get a list of all supported columns.

	      The default list of columns may be extended if list is specified in the format +list (e.g. -o +UUID).

       -q, --quiet
	      Suppress extra info messages.

       -u, --unit S
	      Deprecated option.  Only the sector unit is supported. This option is not supported when using the --show-size command.

       -X, --label type
	      Specify the disk label type (e.g. dos, gpt, ...).  If this option is not given, then sfdisk defaults to the existing label,  but	if
	      there  is  no  label  on	the  device yet, then the type defaults to dos. The default or the current label may be overwritten by the
	      "label: <name>" script header line. The option --label does not force sfdisk to create empty disk label (see the	EMPTY  DISK  LABEL
	      section below).

       -Y, --label-nested type
	      Force  editing  of  a  nested  disk  label.   The primary disk label has to exist already.  This option allows to edit for example a
	      hybrid/protective MBR on devices with GPT.

       -w, --wipe when
	      Wipe filesystem, RAID and partition-table signatures from the device, in order to avoid possible collisions.  The argument when  can
	      be  auto,  never	or  always.   When  this option is not given, the default is auto, in which case signatures are wiped only when in
	      interactive mode; except the old partition-table signatures which are always wiped before create a new partition-table if the  argu-
	      ment  when  is not never. In all cases detected signatures are reported by warning messages before a new partition table is created.
	      See also wipefs(8) command.

       -W, --wipe-partitions when
	      Wipe filesystem, RAID and partition-table signatures from a newly created partitions, in order to avoid  possible  collisions.   The
	      argument	when can be auto, never or always.  When this option is not given, the default is auto, in which case signatures are wiped
	      only when in interactive mode and after confirmation by user.  In all cases detected signatures are  reported  by  warning  messages
	      after a new partition is created.  See also wipefs(8) command.

       -v, --version
	      Display version information and exit.

       -h, --help
	      Display help text and exit.

INPUT FORMATS
       sfdisk supports two input formats and generic header lines.

       Header lines
	      The optional header lines specify generic information that apply to the partition table.	The header-line format is:

		     <name>: <value>

	      The currently recognized headers are:

		     unit   Specify the partitioning unit.  The only supported unit is sectors.

		     label  Specify the partition table type.  For example dos or gpt.

		     label-id
			    Specify  the partition table identifier.  It should be a  hexadecimal number (with a 0x prefix) for MBR and a UUID for
			    GPT.

	      Note that it is only possible to use header lines before the first partition is specified in the input.

       Unnamed-fields format

		     start size type bootable

	      where each line fills one partition descriptor.

	      Fields are separated by whitespace, comma or semicolon possibly followed by whitespace; initial and trailing whitespace is  ignored.
	      Numbers  can  be octal, decimal or hexadecimal; decimal is the default.  When a field is absent, empty or specified as '-' a default
	      value is used.  But when the -N option (change a single partition) is given, the default for each field is its previous value.

	      The default value of start is the first non-assigned sector aligned according to device I/O limits.  The default	start  offset  for
	      the first partition is 1 MiB.  The offset may be followed by the multiplicative suffixes (KiB, MiB, GiB, TiB, PiB, EiB, ZiB and YiB)
	      then the number is interpreted as offset in bytes.

	      The default value of size indicates "as much as possible"; i.e. until the next partition or end-of-device.  A numerical argument	is
	      by default interpreted as a number of sectors, however if the size is followed by one of the multiplicative suffixes (KiB, MiB, GiB,
	      TiB, PiB, EiB, ZiB and YiB) then the number is interpreted as the size of the partition in bytes and it is then aligned according to
	      the  device I/O limits.  A '+' can be used instead of a number to enlarge the partition as much as possible.  Note '+' is equivalent
	      to the default behaviour for a new partition; existing partitions will be resized as required.

	      The partition type is given in hex for MBR (DOS), without the 0x prefix, a GUID string for GPT, or a shortcut:

		     L	    Linux; means 83 for MBR and 0FC63DAF-8483-4772-8E79-3D69D8477DE4 for GPT.

		     S	    swap area; means 82 for MBR and 0657FD6D-A4AB-43C4-84E5-0933C84B4F4F for GPT

		     E	    extended partition; means 5 for MBR

		     H	    home partition; means 933AC7E1-2EB4-4F13-B844-0E14E2AEF915 for GPT

		     X	    linux extended partition; means 85 for MBR.

		     U	    EFI System partition, means EF for MBR and C12A7328-F81F-11D2-BA4B-00A0C93EC93B for GPT

	      The default type value is L

	      bootable is specified as [*|-], with as default not-bootable.  The value of this field is irrelevant for Linux - when Linux runs	it
	      has been booted already - but ir might play a role for certain boot loaders and for other operating systems.

       Named-fields format
	      This  format  is more readable, robust, extensible and allows to specify additional information (e.g. a UUID).  It is recommended to
	      use this format to keep your scripts more readable.

		     [device :] name[=value], ...

	      The device field is optional.  sfdisk extracts the partition number from the device name.  It allows to specify  the  partitions	in
	      random order.  This functionality is mostly used by --dump.  Don't use it if you are not sure.

	      The value can be between quotation marks (e.g. name="This is partition name").  The currently supported fields are:

		     start=number
			    The  first	non-assigned sector aligned according to device I/O limits.  The default start offset for the first parti-
			    tion is 1 MiB. The offset may be followed by the multiplicative suffixes (KiB, MiB, GiB, TiB, PiB, EiB, ZiB  and  YiB)
			    then the number is interpreted as offset in bytes.

		     size=number
			    Specify the partition size in sectors.  The number may be followed by the multiplicative suffixes (KiB, MiB, GiB, TiB,
			    PiB, EiB, ZiB and YiB), then it's interpreted as size in bytes and the size is aligned according to device I/O limits.

		     bootable
			    Mark the partition as bootable.

		     attrs=string
			    Partition attributes, usually GPT partition attribute bits.  See --part-attrs for  more  details  about  the  GPT-bits
			    string format.

		     uuid=string
			    GPT partition UUID.

		     name=string
			    GPT partition name.

		     type=code
			    A hexadecimal number (without 0x) for an MBR partition, or a GUID for a GPT partition.  For backward compatibility the
			    Id= field has the same meaning.

EMPTY DISK LABEL
       sfdisk does not create partition table without partitions by default. The lines with partitions are expected in the script by default.  The
       empty partition table has to be explicitly requested by "label: <name>" script header line without any partitions lines. For example:

	      echo 'label: gpt' | sfdisk /dev/sdb

       creates empty GPT partition table. Note that the --append disables this feature.

BACKING UP THE PARTITION TABLE
       It is recommended to save the layout of your devices.  sfdisk supports two ways.

       Use  the --dump option to save a description of the device layout to a text file.  The dump format is suitable for later sfdisk input.  For
       example:

	      sfdisk --dump /dev/sda > sda.dump

       This can later be restored by:

	      sfdisk /dev/sda < sda.dump

       If you want to do a full (binary) backup of all sectors where the partition table is stored, then use the --backup option.  It  writes  the
       sectors	to  ~/sfdisk-<device>-<offset>.bak  files.  The default name of the backup file can be changed with the --backup-file option.  The
       backup files contain only raw data from the device.  Note that the same concept of backup files is used by wipefs(8).  For example:

	      sfdisk --backup /dev/sda

       The GPT header can later be restored by:

	      dd  if=~/sfdisk-sda-0x00000200.bak  of=/dev/sda  
		seek=$((0x00000200))  bs=1  conv=notrunc

       Note that sfdisk since version 2.26 no longer provides the -I option to restore sectors.  dd(1) provides all necessary functionality.

COLORS
       Implicit coloring can be disabled by an empty file /etc/terminal-colors.d/sfdisk.disable.

       See terminal-colors.d(5) for more details about colorization configuration. The logical color names supported by sfdisk are:

       header The header of the output tables.

       warn   The warning messages.

       welcome
	      The welcome message.

NOTES
       Since version 2.26 sfdisk no longer provides the -R or --re-read option to force the kernel to reread the partition  table.   Use  blockdev
       --rereadpt instead.

       Since  version  2.26  sfdisk does not provide the --DOS, --IBM, --DOS-extended, --unhide, --show-extended, --cylinders, --heads, --sectors,
       --inside-outer, --not-inside-outer options.

ENVIRONMENT
       SFDISK_DEBUG=all
	      enables sfdisk debug output.

       LIBFDISK_DEBUG=all
	      enables libfdisk debug output.

       LIBBLKID_DEBUG=all
	      enables libblkid debug output.

       LIBSMARTCOLS_DEBUG=all
	      enables libsmartcols debug output.

SEE ALSO
       fdisk(8), cfdisk(8), parted(8), partprobe(8), partx(8)

AUTHOR
       Karel Zak <kzak@redhat.com>

       The current sfdisk implementation is based on the original sfdisk from Andries E. Brouwer.

AVAILABILITY
       The sfdisk command is part of the util-linux package and is available from https://www.kernel.org/pub/linux/utils/util-linux/.

util-linux							     June 2015								 SFDISK(8)

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