[Cialug] Booted Gentoo LiveCD - can't write to /dev/hda

Rachel Garrett rmgarrett at gmail.com
Sat Oct 20 22:54:48 CDT 2007

I have a brain-tickled feeling that happens when I'm missing something
obvious, but at the moment, I can't figure it out:

1. There's an old computer that I have a Gentoo Live CD running in;

2. I want to format the hard drive;

3. At the livecd# prompt, as root, I say fdisk /dev/hda.

I get a warning message,
"You will not be able to write the partition table.
Note: sector size is 2048 (not 512)
Device contains neither a valid DOS partition table, nor Sun, SGI or OSF
Building a new DOS disklabel. Changes will remain in memory only, until you
decide to write them. After that, of course, the previous content won't be

Warning: invalid flag 0x0000 of partition table 4 will be corrected by

4. Then I tell it to create a new partition, accept the defaults, and say w
to write out. It gives me an error, "Unable to write to /dev/hda."

Why won't the changes take even when I'm root and say to write them?


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