Drive labelling with ZFS

Frank Leonhardt freebsd-doc at
Tue Jun 13 22:03:36 UTC 2017

Can anyone help me? I'm going quietly crazy here with FreeBSD 11-RELEASE

If you're creating a non-trivial ZFS raidz zpool, I've heard it said 
that labelling the GPT partitioned drives with their shelf and row 
number is A Good Thing. (I'm not talking about sticky labels stuck on 
the drive, but they're good too). When you look at a healthy zpool 
status you get a list of all the GEOMs, but when one fails it's 
identified by the GUID and not the device. Good luck tracking it down 
from that piece of information, unless it's also making a strange 
buzzing noise.

So I though I'd just use use glabel label to set a label on the vdev 
(e.g "/dev/da7p3") and zpool would use that instead. Nope; only the 
GUID. I also, naively, thought that setting the label would cause it to 
appear as a device in /dev/gpt/

What have I not understood?

I have a theory - label the partitions before creating the zpool, and 
add  them to the zpool afterwas by a /dev/gpt/ name. Except I have lost 
confidence that the label would appear in /dev/gpt/. It could be that 
/dev/gpt names don't appear if they're part of a zpool.

However, testing this theory is going to involve hassle (i.e. the 
destruction and rebuilding of the entire zpool) so if anyone could tell 
me if I'm heading in the right direction I'd appreciate it. I may well 
have missed something trivial here.

Thanks, Frank.

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list