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I currently have two hard drives installed on my computer:

sda           465.8G            
├─sda1 ext4    10.5G            
├─sda2 ext4     3.4G            
└─sda4 ext4   233.3G /          
sdb           465.8G            
sr0            1024M 

sdb is my second drive, which is currently empty. I would like to mount to it to copy some files to it before using it as a backup drive.

Note that sdb, as expected, exists in the device folder as a disk file:

/dev$ ls -l | grep sdb
brw-rw----  1 root disk      8,  16 Mar  2 11:14 sdb

I created a directory called backup in my media directory:

/media$ sudo mkdir backup

I tried to mount to it:

 sudo mount /dev/sdb /media/backup
mount: you must specify the filesystem type

I tried to specify filesystem type:

sudo mount /dev/sdb /media/backup
mount: you must specify the filesystem type
/media$ sudo mount -t ext4 /dev/sdb /media/backup
mount: wrong fs type, bad option, bad superblock on /dev/sdb,
       missing codepage or helper program, or other error
       In some cases useful info is found in syslog - try
       dmesg | tail  or so

I don't know what all these errors are about. sdb is an unformatted drive. I just want to mount to it to view it for right now.

share|improve this question
up vote 2 down vote accepted

You won't be able to mount a disk : you need to mount a partition. As it is an unformatted drive, you will have to give it a partition table and a partition before mounting.

You can do all that with gparted, which is pretty easy to understand and well documented :

sudo apt-get install gparted

Plus, mounting a partition will be like this :

sudo mount /dev/sdbx /media/backup 

=> where x denotes a partition number, it will be like 1,2,...

share|improve this answer
That gparted program you mentioned. I usually use a bootable disk with gparted live. Is gparted the same thing as gparted live? – JohnMerlino Mar 3 '14 at 0:13
yep, it is. It isn't installed by default though, not sure why exactly – MrVaykadji Mar 3 '14 at 1:11

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