Alternatively referred to as a device file or special file, a device name is an identification that is given to the physical hardware device assigned by the operating system.
A device name provides an interface to peripheral devices such as parallel and serial ports, or access to a disk partition. For example, "hd" being the device name for an ATA hard drive. The following table lists Linux device names in the /dev hierarchy and are all examples of device names.
Examples of device names
|fd||Floppy diskette or file descriptor.|
|hd||IDE driver, ATA hard drive, or ATAPI optical disc drive.|
|hdb||Slave ATA device.|
|hdc||Master ATA device on the second channel. An example of how this may be listed: hdc1, which indicates first partition on master ATA device.|
|parport, pp||Parallel ports.|
|pt||Pseudo-terminal (virtual terminal).|
|sd||SCSI mass storage.|
|sda||First registered SCSI device. An example of how this may be listed: sda4, which indicates the last partition on the first registered SCSI device.|
|ses||SCSI enclosure driver.|
|sg||Generic SCSI layer.|
|sr||SCSI ROM driver.|
|st||SCSI tape driver.|
|ttyS||Terminal serial port driver.|
|ttyUSB||Terminal USB serial converter.|
MS-DOS and Windows users should see our reserved word definition for a listing of the device file names.