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Old 05-18-2015, 05:53 PM   #1
herakles_14
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Question An open question


Hey,

When you have decided to multi-boot several distros and have space to do so. Is there a preferred sequential order for those distros?

Let me see if I can make it even more confusing. I presently have two Linux distros on my PC, PClinuxOS and Manjaro 0.8.12 XFCE. My PCLOS was installed first then came Manjaro.

If I am able to install a third distro would I do it from when I am using Manjaro, or would it be better sequentially to do when I am using PCLinuxOS? Or does it not make a hill of Garbanzos which distro I happen to be using at the time of the third installation?

How does 'GRUB' feature in to this equation?

The Grub screen (I think it's called) shows 'Manjaro' at the top, then Manjaro Advanced. Then below it is, PCLinuxOS followed by PCLinuxOS Advanced. Last is the MEMTest.

Would this hypothetical third distro and there is no problem with installation or with 'GRUB', appear at the top of the list when booting into it?

"XXX.distro
XXX.distro advanced
manjaro
manjaro adcanced
pclos
pclos advanced
MemTest"

Just for elucidation the third Linux distro I am considering adding is; Ubuntu 15.04 Mate Edition.

Thanking All in Advance.

herakles_14
 
Old 05-18-2015, 06:05 PM   #2
jailbait
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It does not matter what order you install the distributions. When you install each distribution let that distribution install grub. You will end up with a version of grub installed in each distribution. The version of grub on your master boot record will be the last one from the last distribution installed.

Then at that point you can boot into the distribution that you want to control the master boot record and install grub again from that distribution. That grub will be the one installed on your MBR.

If you don't like the way any of the distributions have set up grub you can boot into the distribution which has its grub installed on the MBR and configure the grub configuration files to your liking.

----------------------
Steve Stites
 
Old 05-18-2015, 06:21 PM   #3
suicidaleggroll
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herakles_14 View Post
If I am able to install a third distro would I do it from when I am using Manjaro, or would it be better sequentially to do when I am using PCLinuxOS? Or does it not make a hill of Garbanzos which distro I happen to be using at the time of the third installation?
You don't install an OS from within another OS, so you won't be using either of your two existing distros when you install the third.
 
Old 05-18-2015, 06:58 PM   #4
Keith Hedger
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If you are going to distro hop I would install a minimal system to a small boot partition and install grub from there, rather than install it fresh every time you install a new distro, this is what I do, I also use the same partition for backup/restore/system recovery software etc, and I never use grub auto configuration I just manually tweak the grub.cfg file as and when I need to add a new system.
 
Old 05-19-2015, 04:33 AM   #5
herakles_14
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Hey,

My idea of installing Ubuntu 15.04 Mate Edition as a third distro has hit a snag. My first attempt failed when the screen went black with three or four bands of digitized stuff across the monitor. After several failed tries to correct the issue, I had to do a shut down from the Tower then a start up. AT the right spot, I removed the disc and the computer continued its boot up. I selected to boot to PCLOS.

I was now running PCLOS, I put the disc in the tray and rebooted. This time around there was no black screen or bands of digitized stuff. The Ubuntu disc loaded as it should and I was at the point where I can check it out or make a full install. I hit the button to install it. The next window was where I selected to install updates while installing as well as third party 'stuff'. This was followed in time with the partition decision window.

My PC recognized there were other distro aboard and gave me the opportunity of having the others share with Ubuntu Mate the space they had. I decided against this choice as well as making Ubuntu Mate the one and only distro for the third option where I could manually select the partitions.

The Partition Table appeared to show what I was doing to use for Ubuntu Mate now said 'unusable'. I canceled the installation and booted back into PCLinuxOS. I had the idea of taking a gander at gparted and see what it showed. I opened it and it showed the space that 'Ubuntu Mate' indicated as unusable was marked as 'unallocated'. I put the Ubuntu Mate disc in again and once more what 'gparted' showed as 'unallocated' it showed as 'unusable'. For the second time I canceled installation booting this time into Manjaro.

I decided to see about making a old stand by 'Mageia' as my third distro and when it reached the Partition Table, I saw the 'unallocated space'. Set up the space for “/root”, and was ready to set up the space for “/home” when I am seeing a set up for 'swap' partition. I already have a swap partition. I cancelled installing Mageia.

I did not know whether I could have a second 'swap' partition. I did not proceed further, not until someone could give me a straight answer.

herakles_14
 
Old 05-19-2015, 08:14 AM   #6
fatmac
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Usually when installing 'extra' distros to a hard drive, the installer program will use any swap partitions that are available, (they don't normally create more swap partitions). If you allow the new distro to install its grub it should add your other distros, with the new one at the top of the list. Maybe Ubuntu needs an allocated partition to install into (?!).
 
Old 05-20-2015, 06:53 PM   #7
herakles_14
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Hey fatmac,

When I tried to install Ubuntu, it would show that the space which on either my Manjaro or PCJinuxOS showed 'unallocated', Ubuntu showed that same space as 'unusable'. It is hard to allocate space which Ubuntu has declared unusable.
 
Old 05-20-2015, 08:38 PM   #8
JeremyBoden
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Are you installing to a "legacy" MBR?

If so, the chances are that you have already set up 4 primary partitions for the previous Linux's and so Ubuntu can't make use of the unallocated space.

A possible fix would be to comment out the swap partition in the /etc/fstab files in the two linux's & then delete the swap partition.
Then create an extended partition in the unallocated space (using gparted) - this will allow many logical partitions to be created there.
Unfortunately, your original swap partition will still exist as wasted space.

Last edited by JeremyBoden; 05-20-2015 at 08:40 PM.
 
Old 05-20-2015, 11:09 PM   #9
EDDY1
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Post output of fdisk -l
 
Old 05-21-2015, 05:30 PM   #10
herakles_14
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EDDY1, Hey here is waht I got after 'fdisk -l':




Password:
[root@mithradates menelaos]# fdisk -l
Disk /dev/sda: 298.1 GiB, 320072933376 bytes, 625142448 sectors
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disklabel type: dos
Disk identifier: 0x39e68003

Device Boot Start End Sectors Size Id Type
/dev/sda1 63 17414459 17414397 8.3G 82 Linux swap / Solaris
/dev/sda2 17414460 133644734 116230275 55.4G 5 Extended
/dev/sda3 * 133644735 158820515 25175781 12G 83 Linux
/dev/sda4 158820516 240820515 82000000 39.1G 83 Linux
/dev/sda5 17414523 42813224 25398702 12.1G 83 Linux
/dev/sda6 42813288 133644734 90831447 43.3G 83 Linux

Partition table entries are not in disk order.


TO JeremyBodeen; I do not know if I am installing to a "Legacy" MBR?
You talked about deleting the swap partition.
["A possible fix would be to comment out the swap partition in the /etc/fstab files in the two linux's & then delete the swap partition."]
What is meant by 'comment out' the swap partition in the /etc/fstab files? Is it another way of saying delete that item or has it another meaning? I understand I would need to do this with both distros.You say for me to delete the swap partition, is that the swap partition that shows on/in/or/about Gparted? Would I again have to do this with each distro or would I only need do this swap deletion from a Gparted once?

Thanks for all your help.
 
Old 05-21-2015, 05:55 PM   #11
yancek
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You are already using 4 primary partitions and the most sensible way to install another operating system is to shrink sda5 to make unallocated space for another system. Use GParted from the Ubuntu installation media to do that and then either create and format the partition of the desired size or do it during the installation.
 
Old 05-21-2015, 08:25 PM   #12
EDDY1
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There should be about 150 unallocated space, if this is the case get gparted live & move the unallocated space to extended partition.
 
Old 05-21-2015, 09:56 PM   #13
JeremyBoden
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Yes - you are using the so-called "legacy" MBR (Master Boot Record) method.
It is much easier to understand than the recent replacement scheme (UEFI).

It's not ideal for loading more than two OS's - although with careful planning three ought to be easily achievable.

BTW A swap partition is not an absolute requirement.
 
Old 05-24-2015, 05:28 AM   #14
herakles_14
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There is a drastic way to get it so I can have more distros that would entail doing a installation of PCLinuxOS. Then at the spos where the partition table is shown click on the buttton in the lower left corner that says 'clear all' and start over making my 290+GB extended. Then having. PCLinuxOS, Manjaro and whatever I would like to join them. A drastic move, as I saitd.

Yancek, Under '/dev/sda2', is extended and under it are /dev/sda5 and dev/sda6, which happen to be the Root and Home Partitions for PCLinuxOS. Shrinking sda5 would not accomplish anything as I see it.

FDDY1; The unallocated space is closer to 180GB. I have a new 'gparted live' disc. I am ready to use it but can you tell me how is it any different from the Gpated I already have installed on the two distros I currently have on my PC?

Is there a way to move the unallocated space up to /dev/sda2 (Extendet) or to move it down to where the unallocated space is presently? Could I use the Gparted Live Disc to make the moves or ??
 
Old 05-24-2015, 07:41 AM   #15
JeremyBoden
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In terms of a drastic solution:-

Resizing is only possible where you have two areas next to each other.

I think you need to delete sda2, 3 & 4.
Create sda2 as an extended partition for all remaining free space.
Re-install your distros into sda5.. sda15 - I think 15 is the maximum(???).
You would be able to use gparted to move or resize sda5 - sda15.
Resize/move can be a very slow operation.

When installing, you will need to use the "custom" install to make sure things go into the right places.

There is an advanced method that is possible with some/all (?) distros.
Make a small boot partition plus a single big partition and use LVM.
This gives you unlimited partitions, each easily resizeable.
But it isn't really designed for loading lots of distros....
 
  


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