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Parted 2.0 plans

From: Leslie P. Polzer
Subject: Parted 2.0 plans
Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2006 18:32:41 +0200
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20060728)

Hello David,

  as promised some information on the plans for GNU Parted 2.0.

1. move from SVN to darcs as RCS.

2. new web site -- the current "GNU" style is nice for packages not conveying much information. We do, so we need subdivisions (a link bar).

3. "Switch" campaign. This should be done together with the newly finished GNU fdisk package. Parts: 3a) a "why switch" web site (more like presentation slides) showing the advantages of libparted-based partitioners in contract to legacy tools. 3b) PR announcements to more sites than unusual and written especially for this. Perhaps mails to distributors.

4. A solid testing framework.

5. libparted and parted changes as outlined in the attached text file.
libparted and parted should probably support at least the same stuff as GParted.

We will most likely receive a 600 GBP donation from the AFFS organization, and I would like to spend it on bounties for 2.0 (those should also be accompanied by PR work).

Somewhat unrelated: attached is also a template for a release announcement (ATM I'm using this for the GNU announces list only).

  Let me know if there's more you want to fit in.

  All the best,


Task #1: partition guessing
* API MOD (PedFileSystem): ped_file_system_probe needs guessing
        functionality (gpart)

Task #2 (bundle):
* device mapper fix

* support for suspend2 partitions

* skip CD-ROM drives by default when autoprobing

Task #3 (stack dumping):
* add stackdump functionality to libparted: on a fatal signal, print a
  backtrace of all function symbols on the stack.  I already have started
  the code for this.  The guys from mplayer also have this, so their
  code might help.

Task #4:
* external tool integration:  file systems are growing to complex to support
  them all natively.  Design an API to call external tools so they fit in
  nicely with libparted and implement some of them.  GParted already has a
  (C++) API with impls, so this might help.

Task #5:
* API ADD: util.h
  A lot of programs are doing copy & paste from parted.c.  Move the functions
  from this file to a well-designed API in libparted with header util.h.


Task #1 (bundle):
* parted -l (direct interface to "print all" command)
* warn before "mklabel"
* alias: "mktable"
* NAME fix (let partition name be the last question?  peek?)
* warn if no active partition
* "physsectsize"/"addconstraint"/"addalign"/etc. command

        /* XXX sector_size has not been set yet! */
        /* dev->phys_sector_size = dev->sector_size
         * sector_multiplier;*/
        dev->phys_sector_size = PED_SECTOR_SIZE_DEFAULT;

Task #2:
* raw partition resize/move: parted currently only supports resizing/moving
  partitions when it knows the file systems on them and can resize/move them.
  Implement partition resizing without caring about the file system and add
  a question at appropriate places in parted.c to ask the user if he wants
  this functionality.

* dumb file system moving: implement a dumb file system move that can also
  move the beginning of the file system.  It should work like dd.  Research
  on which file systems this will work.

Task #3:
* don't execute requested actions after every command.  Instead, provide a
  "write" command that commit them to disk on user request.
Might help: libparted API (PedDisk): Keep copy of table in memory and
        modify this finally commit.

The GNU Parted team is pleased to announce version 1.7.1, a major

  HELP WANTED: GNU Parted and GNU fdisk need people helping!
               If you are able to contribute to the code or
               documentation, please write to address@hidden

GNU Parted is a package for creating, destroying, resizing, checking,
and copying partitions and the file systems on them. This is useful
for creating space for new operating systems, reorganizing disk usage,
copying data between hard disks, and disk imaging. It contains a
library, libparted, and a command-line frontend, parted, which also
serves as a sample implementation and script backend.

Graphical frontends include GParted (using the Gtk+ toolkit) and
QtParted (using the Trolltech Qt toolkit). A frontend to Linux fdisk and
cfdisk is currently being worked on.

Gzipped and bzipped tarballs are available from


and its mirror sites.

SHA1 sums:

  aaca6d5ea820e39cad1fce1e75be0350d4c02840  parted-1.7.1.tar.gz
  a504bb2c136e1c928b74e37ae5aa4066f8300e45  parted-1.7.1.tar.bz2

  The web site of GNU Parted with links to the user's and programmer's
manual is at


* bug fixes related to linking, HFS, ext2, the Mac disk label

* signal handling bug fix

  Leslie P. Polzer <address@hidden>
  GNU Parted Maintainer

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