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I have a Debian 8 VM with:

  • 1x virtual root disk
  • 1x virtual data disk with a ZFS file system on it.

When I initially created the ZFS file system, I did not manually create partitions, but simply ran this command:

zpool create -f my-pool /dev/sdb

Later, I expanded the virtual disk with the ZFS file system, but my ZFS pool would not recognise the bigger size without me resizing the ZFS partition, but another partition was in the way of type: "Solaris reserved 1", so I deleted it.

All seems to have worked fine, but I am concerned:

  • Why did ZFS create a second partition on the disk reported by fdisk -l as type: "Solaris reserved 1"?
  • Did I break anything I might not be aware of?

Here is the fdisk -l output PRIOR to deleting partition 9 in order to expand partition 1:

Disk /dev/sdb: 1.7 TiB, 1864015806464 bytes, 3640655872 sectors
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disklabel type: gpt

Device          Start        End    Sectors  Size Type
/dev/sdb1        2048 3221207039 3221204992  1.5T Solaris /usr & Apple ZFS
/dev/sdb9  3221207040 3221223423      16384    8M Solaris reserved 1

parted just showed it like this:

Model: VMware Virtual disk (scsi)
Disk /dev/sdb: 1864GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
Partition Table: gpt
Disk Flags: 

Number  Start   End     Size    File system  Name                  Flags
 1      1049kB  1649GB  1649GB  zfs          zfs-515ff33e31a51432
 9      1649GB  1649GB  8389kB

Am I ok, or do I need to be concerned? Any clue what on earth a "Solaris reserved 1" partition type is? Why was it created in the first place?

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  • "Hey, I did something that didn't understand... Can you tell me if I broke something"?
    – ewwhite
    May 1, 2017 at 8:11

1 Answer 1

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ZFS has tools for this.

In order to resize ZFS pools, you're supposed to use the following after rescanning the device in VMware:

zpool online -e my-pool /dev/sdb

Sometimes you need a partprobe before that (or a reboot).

I don't know why you deleted partition 9 or modified the partition table. That structure is in place for Solaris compatibility (and consistency of the ZFS format), but is not necessary under Linux.

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  • 1
    I did indeed try the zpool online -e my-pool /dev/sdb as well as partprobe several times over and over again, but it had zero effect. Thanks for confirming the Solaris partition is not needed under Linux.
    – user122992
    May 2, 2017 at 0:32

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