GPT versus MBR

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ganamant
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GPT versus MBR

Post by ganamant » Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:56 am

I recently had to do a hdd wipe and reinstall Mint from scratch. While I was at it, I switched from MBR to GPT partitionning scheme. I now have 6 native partitions, as opposed to the primary/extended mess I was used to. Performance-wise, I have noticed no difference at all. I've read somewhere that GPT makes it easy to resize partitions without data loss, and I might use this in the future. Apart from that, are there any other practical advantages with using GPT? I don't remember whether partitions can be added later; can they? Are there any special risks?

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catweazel
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Re: GPT versus MBR

Post by catweazel » Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:58 am

There are no silly questions, but there are silly answers.

Cosmo.
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Re: GPT versus MBR

Post by Cosmo. » Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:46 am

GPT is a journaling partitioning system and by this more stable. (Mostly not a big deal.)
ganamant wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:56 am
I've read somewhere that GPT makes it easy to resize partitions without data loss
This is only partially correct. Such kind of operations are always dangerous and should only be done after backing up the data. But GPT has the advantage, that the number of partitions are not limited. (To be correct, that is not quite correct, but who creates more than 100 partitions on one drive?) With MBR you are limited to 4 primary partitions; one of them can be set as an extended partition, where you can create multiple logical drives inside. But if you now need to change the partitioning layout it can happen, that you have to move at first the extended partition and for doing that to handle all the logical drives. With GPT this is not needed, so it is more flexible.

GPT is actually a part of the UEFI technology. In Windows you can indeed not use GPT without EFI (and not EFI without GPT), but in Linux (at least 64 bit) it is possible to use GPT also with BIOS mode; I do this since years and it works perfectly. There does exist indeed some hardware, where this combination BIOS & GPT does not work, but this does not happen so often. You will notice this already after installation of Mint: It will nt bot in this case. But all you risk is the time for another installation with a MBR partition table. If BIOS / GPT boots after installation you can simply proceed.

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