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I am going through this tutorial for setting up PostgreSQL on AWS:

Here are the first few steps:

1. Launch an EC2 instance using the AMI of your choice. (For this example, use the Amazon Linux 64-bit AMI.)
2. Create an Amazon EBS volume to use for your PostgreSQL storage, and attach it to the instance.
**Note: You need the operating system device name (/dev/xvdc for instance) to complete step 6.**
3. Connect to the instance by SSH.
4. Make a file system on your Amazon EBS volume:
    $ yum install xfsprogs
    **$ sudo mkfs -t xfs /dev/xvdc**
5. Make a directory to serve as a mount point:
    $ sudo mkdir -p /data
    $ sudo chown `id -u` /data
6. Edit your fstab to mount the volume on startup:
    $ sudo –I
    $ echo ‘/dev/xvdc /data auto noatime,noexec,nodiratime 0 0’ >> /etc/fstab

In step 4, I think they mean that I should format the newly attached EBS volume, and not the OS volume. But the since in the note in step 2 they referred to the OS as 'xvdc' I'm confused.

I am not experienced with AWS or Linux that's why I am not confident enough in my understanding and wanted to verify it.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

/dev/xvdc is the name of the new device. By "operating system device name", they mean that this is the name by which the OS refers to this device. I think you're confusing "operating system device" with "root volume". Your root volume is likely /dev/xvda1.

As such, you should be follow the tutorial as specified.

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Exactly. Thanks! – itaysk Jul 14 '13 at 8:12

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