When I run sfdisk -l on my Ubuntu 14.04 machine, it returns the following:

Disk /dev/xvda: 36473 cylinders, 255 heads, 63 sectors/track
Units = cylinders of 8225280 bytes, blocks of 1024 bytes, counting from 0

   Device Boot Start     End   #cyls    #blocks   Id  System
/dev/xvda1          0+    522     523-   4200966   83  Linux
/dev/xvda2        523     784     262    2104515   82  Linux swap / Solaris
/dev/xvda3        785   36473-  35689- 286664983+  8e  Linux LVM
                end: (c,h,s) expected (1023,254,63) found (633,35,42)
/dev/xvda4          0       -       0          0    0  Empty


I am suprised about the /dev/xvda4 entry: There is no entry for it when listing the /dev/ directory, and other commands such as parted -l and lsblk don't reference that device either.

What does sfdisk -l show with that /dev/xvda4 entry?


This disk appears to use the traditional PC partitioning type, also known as MBR. In the MBR format, there are exactly four primary partitions, no more, no less: the partition table in the first sector of the disk has four entries. An entry can be marked with type 0, meaning unused. fdisk -l (like many other tools) omits entries in the primary partition table that are unused. sfdisk -l lists those partitions and indicates that they're empty.

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