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Adding USB Storage
You can add extra disk storage to an Iron Pi using an off-the-shelf USB flash disk or external hard drive. However, mapping the storage into your environment takes a few manual steps.
Start by plugging the USB disk into one of the Iron Pi's USB ports. Run the
lsblkcommand to see the raw disk. In the example below, the USB disk is listed as
sda, and the detected capacity if 14.3GB. It's normal for the detected capacity to be a bit below the drive's nominal capacity.
The disk has one partition,
sda1. We will use that partition name in the next step when creating the filesystem.
mmcblk0is the Iron Pi's built-in flash drive. Do not try to format
mmcblk0as an external disk!
If you want to use the USB drive to move files between the Iron Pi and a Windows or Mac computer, you should stick with a FAT32 filesystem, which is how most USB flash drives come formatted from the factory. If you want to use FAT32, you can skip the ext4 filesystem creation step below.
If you want to use the USB drive to run applications on the Iron Pi, it's best to format it with a native Linux filesystem.
To create a Linux filesystem on your USB disk, run:
sudo mkfs -t ext4 <PARTITION>
In this example, our partition is /dev/sda1, so our command would be:
sudo mkfs -t ext4 /dev/sda1
To access an external drive in Linux, you need to mount the disk, which means attaching it to the operating system's logical file tree.
/mntdirectory is a common place to mount external drives. In this example, we'll create a directory called
/mnt/usband mount the USB drive there.
sudo mkdir -p /mnt/usb
Once we've created the mount point, let's try mounting the filesystem to it. The command to do that is:
sudo mount <PARTITION> <MOUNT POINT>
In this example, our command would be:
sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/usb
After mounting the disk, run the
df -hcommand to check that it's properly attached. In the example below, you can see that
/dev/sda1is mounted to
/mnt/usband has a capacity of 14GB.
If you want the disk to automatically mount each time the device boots, you will need to add an entry to the /etc/fstab file. Run
sudo nano /etc/fstabto edit that file.
In the editor, add a line with the following contents:
<PARTITION> <MOUNT POINT> <FILESYSTEM TYPE> defaults 0 2
Put a tab beween each field. In this example, our entry is:
/dev/sda1 /mnt/usb ext4 defaults 0 2
ctrl-Xto save and exit. Run
sudo rebootto reboot the device, and then run
df -hafter rebooting to ensure that your disk mounted correctly.