Bios boot partition question

Marko Vojinovic vvmarko at
Mon Nov 14 00:11:03 UTC 2011

Hi folks! :-)

After a successful installation of F16 on my machine with (of course) custom 
partition layout, I decided to read the F16 release notes. ;-) And there I 
found this passage:

Starting in Fedora 16, on non-EFI x86 (32 and 64 bit) systems, anaconda will 
default to creating GPT disklabels (partition tables) instead of MSDOS 
disklabels. On these systems, when booting from a GPT-labelled disk, it is 
strongly recommended (not necessarily required in all cases, depending on the 
system's BIOS/firmware) to create a small (1MiB) BIOS boot partition. This 
partition will be used by the bootloader (GRUB2) for storage.
Automatic partitioning will create the partition when appropriate, but users 
who choose custom partitioning will have to create this partition for 
This BIOS boot partition is only necessary on non-EFI x86 systems whose boot 
device is a GPT-labelled disk. 

Given that I haven't bothered to read this prior to the installation, I didn't 
create the bios boot partition when I customized my partition layout. :-)

Now, I gather from the text above that the boot partition is necessary only 
for "non-EFI" systems with a "GPT-labelled" disk. What does this mean? How can 
I check whether my system is EFI or no, and whether the disk is using GPT 
labels or not?

Furthermore, my system appears to boot without problems without the bios boot 
partition, but is it possible that I may experience trouble later down the 
road? Just how *necessary* is that partition, and do I really need one?

Best, :-)

P.S. If it matters, the installation was performed from a KDE Live CD/USB, 

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