In this post we will learn how to create swap partition in Linux .


  • Type fdisk   /dev/sda command to create swap partition .
[root@localhost ~]# fdisk /dev/sda

The number of cylinders for this disk is set to 6198.
There is nothing wrong with that, but this is larger than 1024,
and could in certain setups cause problems with:
1) software that runs at boot time (e.g., old versions of LILO)
2) booting and partitioning software from other OSs
   (e.g., DOS FDISK, OS/2 FDISK)

Command (m for help): n
Command action
   l   logical (5 or over)
   p   primary partition (1-4)
First cylinder (5737-6198, default 5737):
Using default value 5737
Last cylinder or +size or +sizeM or +sizeK (5737-6198, default 6198): +500M
  • Command – n (for creating partition ) and then give size to that partition .

Type t to change partition type what we created above .Then give partition number in which change will take place and provide HEX code .

Command (m for help): t
Partition number (1-5): 5
Hex code (type L to list codes): L
 0  Empty           1e  Hidden W95 FAT1 80  Old Minix       bf  Solaris
 1  FAT12           24  NEC DOS         81  Minix / old Lin c1  DRDOS/sec (FAT-
 2  XENIX root      39  Plan 9          82  Linux swap / So c4  DRDOS/sec (FAT-
 3  XENIX usr       3c  PartitionMagic  83  Linux           c6  DRDOS/sec (FAT-
 4  FAT16 <32M      40  Venix 80286     84  OS/2 hidden C:  c7  Syrinx
 5  Extended        41  PPC PReP Boot   85  Linux extended  da  Non-FS data
 6  FAT16           42  SFS             86  NTFS volume set db  CP/M / CTOS / .
 7  HPFS/NTFS       4d  QNX4.x          87  NTFS volume set de  Dell Utility
 8  AIX             4e  QNX4.x 2nd part 88  Linux plaintext df  BootIt
 9  AIX bootable    4f  QNX4.x 3rd part 8e  Linux LVM       e1  DOS access
 a  OS/2 Boot Manag 50  OnTrack DM      93  Amoeba          e3  DOS R/O
 b  W95 FAT32       51  OnTrack DM6 Aux 94  Amoeba BBT      e4  SpeedStor
 c  W95 FAT32 (LBA) 52  CP/M            9f  BSD/OS          eb  BeOS fs
 e  W95 FAT16 (LBA) 53  OnTrack DM6 Aux a0  IBM Thinkpad hi ee  EFI GPT
 f  W95 Ext'd (LBA) 54  OnTrackDM6      a5  FreeBSD         ef  EFI (FAT-12/16/
10  OPUS            55  EZ-Drive        a6  OpenBSD         f0  Linux/PA-RISC b
11  Hidden FAT12    56  Golden Bow      a7  NeXTSTEP        f1  SpeedStor
12  Compaq diagnost 5c  Priam Edisk     a8  Darwin UFS      f4  SpeedStor
14  Hidden FAT16 <3 61  SpeedStor       a9  NetBSD          f2  DOS secondary
16  Hidden FAT16    63  GNU HURD or Sys ab  Darwin boot     fb  VMware VMFS
17  Hidden HPFS/NTF 64  Novell Netware  b7  BSDI fs         fc  VMware VMKCORE
18  AST SmartSleep  65  Novell Netware  b8  BSDI swap       fd  Linux raid auto
1b  Hidden W95 FAT3 70  DiskSecure Mult bb  Boot Wizard hid fe  LANstep
1c  Hidden W95 FAT3 75  PC/IX           be  Solaris boot    ff  BBT
  • As shown in table code 82 is for swap .Type code 82
Hex code (type L to list codes): 82
Changed system type of partition 5 to 82 (Linux swap / Solaris)
  • Type command p to print partition table and check whether its been created or not .
Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/sda: 50.9 GB, 50985402368 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 6198 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *           1        5099    40957686   83  Linux
/dev/sda2            5100        5736     5116702+  82  Linux swap / Solaris
/dev/sda4            5737        6198     3711015    5  Extended
/dev/sda5            5737        5798      497983+  82  Linux swap / Solaris
  • Now type w to save .
Command (m for help): w
The partition table has been altered!
Calling ioctl() to re-read partition table.
WARNING: Re-reading the partition table failed with error 16: Device or resource busy.
The kernel still uses the old table.
The new table will be used at the next reboot.
Syncing disks.
  • Before going further we have to save whatever changes taken place in sda .
[root@localhost ~]# partprobe /dev/sda
  • We have to format this disk to use it as swap partition.
[root@localhost ~]# mkswap /dev/sda5
Setting up swapspace version 1, size = 509927 kB
  • Command free -m ( to check)
[root@localhost ~]# free -m
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:          1772        416       1356          0         43        276
-/+ buffers/cache:         96       1676
Swap:         4996          0       4996
  • To activate swap partition type swapon  and partition name
[root@localhost ~]# swapon /dev/sda5
  • Now you can check by cat /proc/swaps command .
[root@localhost ~]# cat /proc/swaps
Filename                                Type            Size    Used    Priority
/dev/sda2                               partition       5116692 0       -1
/dev/sda5                               partition       497972  0       -2
  • If you reboot your machine your partition might get lost .
  • So make permanent entry of that partition .
[root@localhost ~]# vim /etc/fstab
  • In this make entry of your partition name
  • where its mounted-  swap
  • Partition type   – swap
  • defaults  00  will be as usual  .
   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *           1        5099    40957686   83  Linux
LABEL=/                 /                       ext3    defaults        1 1
tmpfs                   /dev/shm                tmpfs   defaults        0 0
devpts                  /dev/pts                devpts  gid=5,mode=620  0 0
sysfs                   /sys                    sysfs   defaults        0 0
proc                    /proc                   proc    defaults        0 0
LABEL=SWAP-sda2         swap                    swap    defaults        0 0
/dev/sda5               swap                    swap    defaults        0 0
  • After making entry of your partition , press ESC and :wq(to save and quit)




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