BtrFS and 13.2 partitioner

I want to install the latest snapshot natively instead of within VirtualBox but I can’t figure out how to use the installer’s partitioner to do that. It wants to install on my SSD which already has 13.1 and that is the only drive where it proposes all the /boot/efi, volumes and sub-volumes for BtrFS. When I select the second hard drive, it tells me I need to delete all the partitions but I never get the same proposal for partitions as I do for my SSD. How do I get the partitioner to format the second drive for BtrFS?

I know a quick fix would be to use Ext4 but I want to know how to do it with BtrFS.

Personally, here’s what I do:

I partition first, using “fdisk” or “gdisk” or similar. In your case, with EFI, it would need to be “gdisk”.

In the install, I click the option “Create Partitioning”

The next screen asks which disks. I select “Expert partitioning”

That gives a list of the partitions that exist. I can right click on any of them, and select “Edit” to change how that partition will be used.

You will need to assign a partition for “/”. Check the box “format partition”. You should be able to select “btrfs” as file system (I used “ext4”).

You probably also want a partition for “/home”. If your partition for home is already formatted, then leave it at “Do not format” but select the “mount partition” and set the mount point. If it is not already formatted, then select “format partition”.

You will also need a partition to mount as “/boot/efi”. Use the existing EFI partition for that (just select “mount partition” with mount point as “/boot/efi”, and do not format). And you will probably want swap.

I’m confused. First you say:

Then you say:

Are you saying I need to format the drive twice?

Maybe I wasn’t clear on my question. How do I get the installer to propose the same partitioning scheme for my second HDD as it does for the SSD?

No. If you partition with “fdisk” or “gdisk”, that will not format the partition. It just carves out the space ready for later formatting. So there was no duplication of formatting.

Note that I described what I do.

Maybe I wasn’t clear on my question. How do I get the installer to propose the same partitioning scheme for my second HDD as it does for the SSD?

Ah, okay.

In that case, click “Create partitioning”.

On the next screen, you are given a list of disks. Check the box for the disk that you want it to use.

When you continue from there, it should propose partitioning based on that disk. It will probably want to create a new EFI partition on that disk. If you don’t want that, you can later edit the suggested partitioning to change it.

Okay, I didn’t catch that the first time that gdisk was just for partitioning.

I already did that. That’s when I got an error message that said I had to delete all the partitions on that disk (formatted with Ext4). So I deleted all the partitions and clicked accept, but then the proposal was to delete the second drive and partition the SSD. I never got a proposal to partition the HDD with /boot/efi and all the other volumes for BtrFS.

Hmm, maybe that’s a bug.

I don’t have an SSD, but I’ll experiment on a system with two drives.

I found a solution. I used 13.1 to format the entire HDD with BtrFS. Then I ran the snapshot installer and chose that drive and I got the proposal for BtrFS that I was looking for. Installation is now complete