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Date:	Fri, 8 Aug 2008 11:17:33 +0530
From:	"Vineet Agarwal" <>
To:	"Goswin von Brederlow" <>
Cc:	"Theodore Tso" <>,
	"rishi agrawal" <>,,
Subject: Re: merging of two file system

On Thu, Aug 7, 2008 at 6:03 PM, Goswin von Brederlow <> wrote:
> Theodore Tso <> writes:
>> On Tue, Jul 29, 2008 at 12:41:25AM +0530, Vineet Agarwal wrote:
>>> yeah i meant that we have to separate filesystems,
>>> stored for example on /dev/hda1 and /dev/hda2, and we want to combine
>>> the data in the two filesystems into a single filesystem /dev/hda3, or
>>> combining the contents of /dev/hda2 so that it is also in /dev/hda1
>>> so is there any mechanism exist to do so either online or offline . please help
>> There is no direct way to do this.
>> How big are the filesystems involved?  The standard and easist way to
>> do this would be to copy /dev/hda2 to another device, then if
>> /dev/hda1 was created with on-line resizing inode, expanding /dev/hda1
>> to fill the space taken by /dev/hda2, and then simply use "cp" to copy
>> the contents that had previously been in /dev/hda2 into the filesystem
>> on /dev/hda1.
> Or if you have no extra disk but some free space you can copy as much
> as possible to hda1, shrink hda2, move hda2, grow hda1, repeat.
> At which point you really start to wish you had used LVM in the first
> place.
>> In theory it would be possible to write a program would take to
>> adjacent filesystems, and map out where the blocks would be once the
>> two partitions were combined, and then relocate blocks to make a
>> single filesystem.  No one has done such a thing, however, for any
>> filesytem.  It is definitely not a trivial thing to do, but it is not
>> impossible; it's not that different from some of what an off-line
>> resize2fs operations does, albeit maybe 3-4 times more complex.
>> The main thing is that no one has ever taken the time to do such a
>> thing, because except for truly large filesystems, it's cheaper just
>> to get an extra disk drive, and just copy the contents off, and then
>> recreate the filesystem.
> I've started such a thing. Not specifically for merging 2 filesystem
> but for changing from one filesystem to another. Actually I did it
> even more generic by attacking the problem at the block device layer.
> The method was this:
> 1) Convert the physical block device into a sparse device
>   - Copy the first few blocks to a safe place
>   - Map the first few blocks to the safe place and the rest to the
>     physical device
>   - Fill the old filesystem with zero (this frees the blocks from the
>     mapping and creates empty space)
> 2) Create a 2nd sparse device (fully empty)
> 3) successivley move files from old to new and write more zeroes to
>   old (this allocates free blocks to the 2nd device as data gets
>   written and frees blocks from the 1st devcie as zeroes are written)
> 4) Destroy empty 1st device
> 5) Convert sparse 2nd device to physical
>   - Move first few virtual blocks to safe place
>   - Defragment all other blocks so virtual == physical
>   - move blocks from safe palce to physical overwriting the sparse
>     device metadata
> The safe palce is used as extra storage when the physical device has
> not enough blocks and to store recovery state infos. With enough free
> space on the FS only a few MB are needed.
> I used this to convert from xfs to ext3 but then run into a bug during
> defragmenting and had to restore from backup. As I used ext3 to
> restore to I had no need for this anymore so I never finished it.
> MfG
>        Goswin

the concept  thought is a bit similar but have not yet implemented
i thought to append or copy the the superblock information from second
hdd to first and then map then all or
i also thought to use lvm over two fs but i don't have much knowledge
about it, still working on it and can u help me to figure it out

i am still working for the design if you have any idea please suggest.

>From :
Vineet Agarwal
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