How to format and mount a second harddrive in the Ubuntu shell

I just had to format and mount a second HD in a Ubuntu system.

Through various tutorials I was able to piece things together.

In my case I knew from the specs of the host of the dedicated server that there should be a second RAID1 SAS system using two 500GB drives but when using saidar to check the system I could only see the primary SATA RAID running the Ubuntu system itself.

So my conclusion was that the second drive wasn’t setup properly but how to do this in the terminal? Normally I’ve only had to do this on local machines where I have access to various GUI interfaces which makes things easier.

First of all we need to check what the drive is called, for instance with fdisk -l.

From the output I got when I ran the above command I could see that the drive was /dev/sdb in my case.

Next it was time to run fdisk /dev/sdb.

Here is my history from doing that:

# fdisk /dev/sdb

WARNING: DOS-compatible mode is deprecated. It's strongly recommended to
         switch off the mode (command 'c') and change display units to
         sectors (command 'u').

Command (m for help): u 
Changing display/entry units to sectors

Command (m for help): n
Command action
   e   extended
   p   primary partition (1-4)
Partition number (1-4): 1
First sector (63-974608383, default 63): 63
Last sector, +sectors or +size{K,M,G} (63-974608383, default 974608383): 974608383

Command (m for help): t
Selected partition 1
Hex code (type L to list codes): L

 0  Empty           24  NEC DOS         81  Minix / old Lin bf  Solaris        
 1  FAT12           39  Plan 9          82  Linux swap / So c1  DRDOS/sec (FAT-
 2  XENIX root      3c  PartitionMagic  83  Linux           c4  DRDOS/sec (FAT-
 3  XENIX usr       40  Venix 80286     84  OS/2 hidden C:  c6  DRDOS/sec (FAT-
 4  FAT16 <32M      41  PPC PReP Boot   85  Linux extended  c7  Syrinx         
 5  Extended        42  SFS             86  NTFS volume set da  Non-FS data    
 6  FAT16           4d  QNX4.x          87  NTFS volume set db  CP/M / CTOS / .
 7  HPFS/NTFS       4e  QNX4.x 2nd part 88  Linux plaintext de  Dell Utility   
 8  AIX             4f  QNX4.x 3rd part 8e  Linux LVM       df  BootIt         
 9  AIX bootable    50  OnTrack DM      93  Amoeba          e1  DOS access     
 a  OS/2 Boot Manag 51  OnTrack DM6 Aux 94  Amoeba BBT      e3  DOS R/O        
 b  W95 FAT32       52  CP/M            9f  BSD/OS          e4  SpeedStor      
 c  W95 FAT32 (LBA) 53  OnTrack DM6 Aux a0  IBM Thinkpad hi eb  BeOS fs        
 e  W95 FAT16 (LBA) 54  OnTrackDM6      a5  FreeBSD         ee  GPT            
 f  W95 Ext'd (LBA) 55  EZ-Drive        a6  OpenBSD         ef  EFI (FAT-12/16/
10  OPUS            56  Golden Bow      a7  NeXTSTEP        f0  Linux/PA-RISC b
11  Hidden FAT12    5c  Priam Edisk     a8  Darwin UFS      f1  SpeedStor      
12  Compaq diagnost 61  SpeedStor       a9  NetBSD          f4  SpeedStor      
14  Hidden FAT16 <3 63  GNU HURD or Sys ab  Darwin boot     f2  DOS secondary  
16  Hidden FAT16    64  Novell Netware  af  HFS / HFS+      fb  VMware VMFS    
17  Hidden HPFS/NTF 65  Novell Netware  b7  BSDI fs         fc  VMware VMKCORE 
18  AST SmartSleep  70  DiskSecure Mult b8  BSDI swap       fd  Linux RAID auto
1b  Hidden W95 FAT3 75  PC/IX           bb  Boot Wizard hid fe  LANstep        
1c  Hidden W95 FAT3 80  Old Minix       be  Solaris boot    ff  BBT            
1e  Hidden W95 FAT1
Hex code (type L to list codes): 83

Command (m for help): w
The partition table has been altered!

Fairly straightforward, after that it was time to format the drive with ext4, like this: mkfs -t ext4 /dev/sdb1.

It was time to mount it, first I created a directory to mount it in: mkdir /sdb.

After that I added it to my /etc/fstab file:

# <file system> <mount point>   <type>  <options>       <dump>  <pass>
/dev/sdb1        /sdb            ext3    defaults        1       1

Finally a mount /sdb did the trick!

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