Gentoo Archives: gentoo-user

From: Alan McKinnon <alan@××××××××××××××××.za>
To: gentoo-user@l.g.o
Subject: Re: [gentoo-user] Automounting drives, partitions & udev, mtab & fstab
Date: Mon, 05 Feb 2007 15:22:03
In Reply to: Re: [gentoo-user] Automounting drives, partitions & udev, mtab & fstab by Douglas Linford
1 On Monday 05 February 2007, Douglas Linford wrote:
2 > Alan,
3 >
4 >
5 > Excuse the double post....
7 You mean the top post? Please don't do that, on mailing lists it's
8 considered rude
10 > So...I am running Gnome 2.16.2 Is Gnome Volume Manager also
11 > managing the drives and partitions I have?
13 Yes
15 > And then what creates the volume name that is displayed on the
16 > desktop for that drive?
18 Gnome VFS (Virtual File System) reads it from various possible places,
19 like the file system label, or the disk drive description, or one of
20 the USB attributes in the case of USB storage devices.
22 What VFS us trying to do is find a sensible descriptor to display to you
23 so you know what device it's talking about
25 > In my example I have a USB external drive with a ext3 partition,
26 > there is no listing in /etc/fstab for that partition, /etc/mtab lists
27 > it as, /dev/sdc2 /media/disk, and on the desktop the icon for it
28 > reads, 66.0 GB Volume. Where is that configured?
30 It isn't configured anywhere to my knowledge, but I'm not a Gnome user
31 and could be wrong.
33 Let me explain how this works:
35 The kernel knows about mount points and file systems. Somewhere it has a
36 function that performs a mount, and user space programs use this
37 function to accomplish the mount. One such program is "mount", which is
38 configured via /etc/fstab and mtab as you point out. "mount" is a
39 traditional program, been around for ages and we all know and love it.
40 It's even suid so regular users can use it if root puts "user"
41 or "users" in the options for a particular mount.
43 "mount" is not the only way to mount stuff though. You can write any
44 user space program you want, and call it whatever you feel like, to
45 perform this system function called mounting. And you don't *have* to
46 consider /etc/fstab when doing it either. Now, "mount" worked fine for
47 years, but it all went belly up when pluggable storage devices came
48 out. A user expects to insert a flash disk or camera and to see the
49 files on it, and to not have to be root to do this. This effectively
50 makes mount unsuitable for pluggable devices.
52 So KDE and Gnome have figured out other ways to mount stuff, and lately
53 the workable solutions have used hal to find devices and dbus to tell
54 apps about the device, all nicely configurable with GUI tools. They
55 don't use fstab either.
57 You can cause interesting effects for yourself if you use an app like
58 supermount from Mandriva and also use KDE automounting. Supermount
59 modifies fstab, so this combination can result in the same device being
60 mounted twice at the same time - entirely possible but seldom what you
61 want :-)
63 I hope this helps, and that I correctly judged what you needed to know.
64 Now it's up to you to find the cute box to click to get the behaviour
65 you want.
67 alan
69 --
70 Optimists say the glass is half full,
71 Pessimists say the glass is half empty,
72 Developers say wtf is the glass twice as big as it needs to be?
74 Alan McKinnon
75 alan at linuxholdings dot co dot za
76 +27 82, double three seven, one nine three five
77 --
78 gentoo-user@g.o mailing list


Subject Author
Re: [gentoo-user] Automounting drives, partitions & udev, mtab & fstab Douglas Linford <drkrider@×××××.com>