Linux Commands Examples

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tell the Linux kernel about the presence and numbering of on-disk partitions

see also : addpart - delpart - fdisk - parted - partprobe


partx [-a|-d|-s|-u] [-t TYPE] [-n M:N] [-] disk

partx [-a|-d|-s|-u] [-t TYPE] partition [disk]

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partx --show /dev/sdb3
partx --show --nr 3 /dev/sdb
partx --show /dev/sdb3 /dev/sdb

All three commands list partition 3 of /dev/sdb.

partx --show - /dev/sdb3

Lists all subpartitions on /dev/sdb3 (the device is used as whole-disk).

partx -o START -g --nr 3 /dev/sdb

Prints the start sector of partition 5 on /dev/sda without header.

partx -o SECTORS,SIZE /dev/sda5 /dev/sda

Lists the length in sectors and human-readable size of partition 5 on /dev/sda.

partx --add --nr 3:5 /dev/sdd

Adds all available partitions from 3 to 5 (inclusive) on /dev/sdd.

partx -d --nr :-1 /dev/sdd

Removes the last partition on /dev/sdd.

offset=$(partx -s raspbian.img |awk '(NR==3) {print $2}')
/sbin/fdisk raspbian.img <<EOF
for tool in dd sfdisk partx mkfs.vfat mke2fs; do
if ! type $tool >/dev/null 2>&1; then
echo "ERROR: \"$tool\" not found."
partx /dev/mmcblk0
sleep 3
umount /dev/mmcblk0p2
mke2fs -j -L "rootfs" /dev/mmcblk0p2
mkdir -p /media/mmcblk0p2


Given a device or disk-image, partx tries to parse the partition table and list its contents. It optionally adds or removes partitions.

The disk argument is optional when a partition argument is provided. To force scanning a partition as if it were a whole disk (for example to list nested subpartitions), use the argument "-". For example:

partx --show - /dev/sda3

This will see sda3 as a whole-disk rather than a partition.

This is not an fdisk program -- adding and removing partitions does not change the disk, it just tells the kernel about the presence and numbering of on-disk partitions.


-a, --add

Add the specified partitions, or read the disk and add all partitions.

-b, --bytes

Print the SIZE column in bytes rather than in human-readable format.

-d, --delete

Delete the specified partitions or all partitions.

-u, --update

Update the specified partitions.

-g, --noheadings

Do not print a header line.

-l, --list

List the partitions. Note that all numbers are in 512-byte sectors. This output format is DEPRECATED in favour of --show. Don’t use it in newly written scripts.

-o, --output list

Define the output columns to use for --show and --raw output. If no output arrangement is specified, then a default set is used. Use --help to get list of all supported columns.

-r, --raw

Use the raw output format.

-s, --show

List the partitions. All numbers (except SIZE) are in 512-byte sectors. The output columns can be rearranged with the --output option.

-t, --type type

Specify the partition table type -- aix, bsd, dos, gpt, mac, minix, sgi, solaris_x86, sun, ultrix or unixware.

-n, --nr M:N

Specify the range of partitions. For backward compatibility also the format <M-N> is supported. The range may contain negative numbers, for example "--nr :-1" means the last partition, and "--nr -2:-1" means the last two partitions. Supported range specifications are:


Specifies just one partition (e.g. --nr 3).


Specifies lower limit only (e.g. --nr 2:).


Specifies upper limit only (e.g. --nr :4).


or <M-N> Specifies lower and upper limits (e.g. --nr 2:4).


The partx command is part of the util-linux package and is available from

see also

addpart , delpart , fdisk , parted , partprobe


Davidlohr Bueso <dave[:at:]gnu[:dot:]org>
Karel Zak <kzak[:at:]redhat[:dot:]com>

The original version was written by Andries E. Brouwer <aeb[:at:]cwi[:dot:]nl>.

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