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I was wondering how logical volume, logical disk, volume, partition, physical disk and filesystem are related and correspond to each other?

I am confused about these concepts and would like to have some general idea and big picture.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

First you have physical disk, because you bought it, it is one piece of hardware. Disk provides some storage, which you (for several reasons) would not like as one piece, but divide it (logically, not with knife) into parts -- partitions. For consistency when you don't like several partitions, you have to create one anyway.

This is the basic layer. Now, depending on your choice you can put the data on partition, or add additional information for some partition manager -- like LVM. When LVM manages your partitions (instead of you) you can do such trick -- buy two disks, create partitions, and then tell LVM that those two partitions are one contiguous space -- logical volume. And on top of LV come data.

Data -- of course you cannot save files just like that, it would be chaos, you need structure. You need discipline, right? ;-) So just before you start storing files, you create filesystem -- system (structure) for the files.

Now you are ready to go.

I don't use LVM for long, but it is amazing stuff, if you ask me. Freedom of shaping your storage, withouth worrying about physical disk limitations... priceless.

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