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The wikipedia entry for Boot Sector says this,

  • CD- ROMs usually have their own structure of boot sectors, for IBM PC compatible systems this is subject to El Torito specifications.


  1. So, do USB flash drives, DVDs, CD-RWs... too each have a structure of their own? And if not, why is a CD-ROM different from the rest, what is so special about it?

  2. When it comes to creating multiple partitions on a storage device (one of which could be an extended-partition), do I need to worry about what storage device-type (CD, USB flash drive, HDD, DVD...) it is?

  3. The wikipedia entry for Volume has this to say

    ... as floppy disks cannot be partitioned with most modern computer software.

Now, I have always thought that -- disregarding differences in their buses, form-factors, storage capacities, and other low-level hardware details -- all storage devices would be the same as far as their partitioning and bootability are concerned, so much so that I could simply copy enough initial sectors of a smaller device to a larger device regardless of the source and destination device-types (floppy, flash drive, CD, HDD, etc) and still have the larger device function exactly like the smaller device. But apparently not so, based on the above wikipedia entry.

I'd wonder why, though! I understand how wasteful it would be to have multiple partitions on a floppy drive, but why should it be anybody's business (the OS and other system software) to dictate such things?

  1. The last of my questions on the same theme is: What device-types are mutually compatible to allow the copying of the device image of one to another, using a tool like /bin/dd? (Assuming, the destination device is as big as or bigger than the source device in terms of storage capacity.)
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