SUMMARY: Disappearing Partition Tables

From: Jim Harmon (
Date: Thu Sep 25 1997 - 09:18:55 CDT

In typical fashion, Sun-Managers have come through strongly and with
great insite.

Thankyou to all the following people for their replies...

But first the common answer: (Solaris specific)

        Solaris and SunOS are designed to ALWAYS skip over the first
        16 sectors of Cylinder 0, which is reserved for storage of the
        Partition Table. If the partition is "ufs" this won't
        (shouldn't) be a problem, as the OS is managing the table

        Any (most?) application that doesn't originate from Sun
        and uses a non-ufs partition (RAW) MAY try to use the entire
        cylinder (and Sybase is one of them) which will often result
        in the table getting destroyed.


        Most respondants suggested that the "0" Cylinder be ignored
        whenever an application wants a raw partition and you wish to
        use the first (0) slice for that partition.

        Casper Dik also suggested that we swap our slice-scheme so that
        our /opt partition is in slice 0 and the sybase raw partition
        is in slice 1.

The original question: (in brief)

>I have a Sybase Developer using Solaris 2.5.1, all(?) current patches,
>on a SPARC5 server who has a problem with a drive label that seems to
>spontaneously reset to default definitions.
>(This isn't Sybase related.. as far as we can tell)
>The drive is a Seagate 4GB fast/narrow, very recent ECO (not sure

<snip> (Sybdump is a raw sybase partition, this table has been
         replaced 4+ times in one day with a default Solaris table)

>Our config:
> s0 /var/sybdump 2.2GB
> s1 /opt 1.7GB
> s2 backup slice 4GB
> s3 (sybindex) 52MB
> s4 (sybhash) 52MB

The list of respondants: (THANKS AGAIN, ALL!)

Deepak D Wilson <>
(Russ Poffenberger)
Rick Reineman
Sydney Weinstein <>
William T BoaTman <>>
Casper Dik <casper@holland.Sun.COM>
Singh Adrian <>
Andrew Toon <
Maes_Eric <>
(Ray Trzaska) (Ray Trzaska)
"Matthew Stier" <>
Stephen P Richardson <>
"Nolan, Garrett" <>
Jim McVey <>
Rogerio Rocha <>
Mark Thomas <>

   Jim Harmon                           The Telephone Connection                          Rockville, Maryland

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