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All About Disk Geometry And The 1024 Cylinder Limit For Disks. - Term Papers

All About Disk Geometry And The 1024 Cylinder Limit For Disks.



Large Disk mini-HOWTO
Andries Brouwer, aeb@cwi.nl
v1.0, 960626

1. The problem

Suppose you have a disk with more than 1024 cylinders. Suppose moreover that
you have an operating system that uses the BIOS. Then you have a problem,
because the usual INT13 BIOS interface to disk I/O uses a 10-bit field for the
cylinder on which the I/O is done, so that cylinders 1024 and past are
inaccessible.

Fortunately, Linux does not use the BIOS, so there is no problem.

Well, except for two things:

(1) When you boot your system, Linux isn't running yet and cannot save you from
BIOS problems.This has some consequences for LILO and similar boot loaders.

(2) It is necessary for all operating ...

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from the first disk (or from floppy), and jumps to the code
found there - usually some bootstrap loader.These small bootstrap programs found
there typically have no own disk drivers and use BIOS services.This means that a
Linux kernel can only be booted when it is entirely located within the first
1024 cylinders.

This problem is very easily solved: make sure that the kernel (and perhaps other
files used during bootup, such as LILO map files) are located on a partition
that is entirely contained in the first 1024 cylinders of a disk that the BIOS
can access - probably this means the first or second disk.

Another point is that the boot loader and the BIOS must agree as to the disk
geometry.It may help to give LILO the `linear' option. More details below.

3.Disk geometry and partitions

If you have several operating systems on your disks, then each uses one or more
disk partitions.A disagreement on where these partitions are may have
catastrophic consequences.

The MBR ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 9/9/2005 01:44:09 PM
Category: Computers
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1103
Pages: 5

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