SUMMARY : Upgrading and Reallocating Disk Space

From: Carl Carpenter (
Date: Fri Jun 04 1999 - 13:42:30 CDT

Thanks for the responses from:
        David S. Foster
        Mark Hargrave
        Jeff Kennedy
        Seth Rothenberg
        Matt Simmons
        Marais Gert
        Bertrand Hutin
        Olivier Giraud

original post is at the bottom


The solution I used

It seems that there is no way to make an interactive install reallocate
disk space unless a file system does not have enough room. Well, this
hack fills up a partition.

        mkfile -v 8m /DELETE

I only needed 8mb in / to fill it to 99%, your size should differ.
You only need to fill 1 of the partitions and you will be able to
resize/move/collapse any partition.

And yes you can collapse partitions.

The only strange things I found
1- SOLARIS made a 2gb /export/home that I could not get rid of
2- Format of the cylinders is backwards from how I have normally
          done it. I thought the / partition should start at 0.
        my way (numbers are not exact)
                Part Tag Flag Cylinders
                  0 root wm 0 - 2000
                  1 swap wu 2001 - 3000
                  2 backup wm 0 - 5000
                  3 unassigned wm 0
                  4 unassigned wm 0
                  5 unassigned wm 0
                  6 home wm 3001 - 4000
                  7 var wm 4001 - 5000
        SOLARIS way
                Part Tag Flag Cylinders
                  0 root wm 3001 - 5000
                  1 swap wu 2001 - 3000
                  2 backup wm 0 - 5000
                  3 unassigned wm 0
                  4 unassigned wm 0
                  5 unassigned wm 0
                  6 home wm 0 - 1000
                  7 var wm 1001 - 2000
do not forget to remove /DELETE


Another solution that i did not try but looks good if you need to do
several upgrades.

You can use a jump-start profile like:

install_type upgrade
backup_media remote_filesystem
layout_constraint your_/_slice changeable 2000
layout_constraint your_/usr_slice collapse
layout_constraint your_/opt_slice collapse
layout_constraint your_/usr/openwin_slice collapse
layout_constraint your_/var_slice changeable 512

The backup media may also be a tape drive or a local disk ( see for more details about profiles )
Changeable (xxx) means "The size can be changed (xxx is the minimum size)
Collaspe means collapse ...
You can also use "movable" which is the same as changeable but the system
can move the fs to another partition.

Olivier Giraud / UNIX SysAdmin (GDA)


Original question

We are in need of changing the partition layout of our servers
and upgrading to SOLARIS 7. I thought that there was an option
to move/resize partitions during an upgrade.

The manual stats that the interactive installation program provides
the ability to reallocate disk space >> IF << the current file
systems don't have enough space for the upgrades.

Well, we must have enough room in the current file systems since
i am never given the oportunity to reallocate space.

Is there a way to make the upgrade allow us to reallocate space?

our setup is
        28Mb /
        385Mb /usr
        190Mb /opt
        145Mb /usr/openwin
        190Mb /var
        NFS /usr/local

we would like to go to
        2Gb /
        512MB /var
        NFS /usr/local

If we can force the reallocation can we also collapse several mounts
into the single mount point?

thanks and will summarize


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