In nautilus and Unity the external drive has a nice short descriptive name "mcat", but all partitions on the 4 internal drives are displayed as a size (834 GB filesystem) or a huge 32-character string form of a GUID:

I'm guessing the external drive is nice, short, sweet and readable because that drive may have no partitions (well, just one I guess) and that name may be the drive label, whereas partitions usually don't have names. That may explain my problem, but doesn't solve it.

Is there some way to give reasonable names to these partitions in nautilus and Unity?

4 Answers 4


Open disk-utility from your Unity dash and click at your Harddisk .then click at the partition where you want a label then click Edit File System Label and give your New Label .enter image description here


Partition labelling is possible using the GParted tool. You just select the partition you want to change the label to, right click and choose the label option. However, you can't change the label for mounted partitions, so you are out of luck for your system partitions.

  • We are able to change labels on mounted drives too - try it out ;)
    – Takkat
    Jun 6, 2012 at 17:37
  • Worked great. As long as it persists through reboot, I'm happy! Thanks.
    – honestann
    Jun 7, 2012 at 8:12

I was redirected here from the "possibly duplicate" question How to change drive's name?. However the accepted answers, both here and there, did not work with me. The guys in the original question (where I came from), and possibly here too, are specifically asking about how to rename a mounted partition using a GUI? And no! I don't want to install additional software (e.g. Gparted) and backup my system.

When I used the accepted answer here I got this error: Cannot change label on mounted device of type filesystem:ntfs. (udisks-error-quark, 11). I found a turnaround here: https://askubuntu.com/a/1003648/402539 which simply says:

  1. Unmount the drive.
  2. Rename it (as above, in the accepted answer here).
  3. Re-mount it back.

The simplest way for me was to set a label in GParted and then in Disks -> Mount Options just to set Identify as and to choose LABEL instead of UUID. And so mounted point has a readable name instead of long string of chars and numbers. That's it! Here some images and my problem explained. How to change mounted HDD UUID to human-readable?

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