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Old 01-25-2011, 09:59 AM   #1
zhierl
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Unhappy Cannot figure out how to partition my had drive


Okay I just heard about the linux thing a few weeks ago so as far as newbies go, I am a fetus. With that said I have minmal computer knowledge but grasp things easily. I have the Ubuntu 10.10 netbook saved to my thumbdrive and can boot it up to where I can try it or install. When I go to install I get to the part where t asks if I want to replace windows or run in side by side. I choose side by side and then it takes me to the screen where I have to partition my hard drive. It will not give me the option to do it automatically, only the advanced manually option or replace windows is there.
So when I have to manually partition the hard drive, this is where my lack of knowledge emerges and where I need your help. I have 239 GB available. I was going to leave 189GB dedicated to windows and use 50 to run ubuntu. The part that is Japanese to me is the file format, boot, root, nfts, etc, etc. Can anyone break it down for me BARNEY style?
I have backed up all my windows data and defraged the hard drive. I just want to get this ubuntu working. Thank you for any help you can provide!!
 
Old 01-25-2011, 10:58 AM   #2
onebuck
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Hi,

Welcome to LQ!

Since you are aware of the M$ disk management tools then you can use the resize to shrink the M$ Win partition to size desired. After that just start the install as you did before then perform the setup. The available space should be shown for the setup/install.

Few links to aid you, some may seem advanced but will help as time goes on;



Linux Documentation Project
Rute Tutorial & Exposition
The LiveCD List
Linux Command Guide
Ultimate Linux Newbie Guide
LinuxSelfHelp
Bash Beginners Guide
Bash Reference Manual
Advanced Bash-Scripting Guide
Linux Home Networking
Virtualiation- Top 10

The above links and others can be found at 'Slackware-Links'. More than just SlackwareŽ links!
 
Old 01-25-2011, 11:04 AM   #3
camorri
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There are several steps to follow to accomplish a dual boot system. I would bet the entire DH is allocated to windoze. You will fist have to find out exactly what partitions are there.

O.K. a partition is a division in the disk, allocating space. In windows you would know this as C: D: etc. To complicate matters the terminology in linux is different. We designate partitions by drive, and partition number. For example, the first serial HD would be sda. The first partition would be known as sda1. The second as sda2, etc. Then next drive would be sdb, so the fist partition on the second drive is sdb1 etc...

A little more about partitions. There are different kinds of partitions. There are primary partitions, and extended partitions. You are only allowed 4 primary partitions on a HD, no matter how big it is. This is why extended partitions exist. If you need more than 4, we usually create a primary, ( one is necessary ) and the rest in extended. An extended partition can be sub-divide into more partitions. Not sure what the limit is, but many. You can also "hide" partitions. This is often used on netbooks. Since Bills company no longer supplies CD's to install from, there will be a restore partition you can not see. There is probably a diagnostic partition as well, hidden again. This means the manufacturer has used up all the primary partitions on you. I know, I have a HP netbook that came this way.

In short, what I'm telling you is, you need to find out what you have available, not unused space as windoze sees it. Unused space that is allocated to windoze or a restore partition, is not available to install linux to.

I had no interest in windbloze, so I just deleted the partitions, but new ones and installed. Bye windoze! I know you do not want to do that.

What to do. There are distros that supplies visual tools to allow you to 'see' the partitioning scheme. One is called Partedmagic. It is bootable from a CD. Netbook, no CD drive I bet. You may be able to install it to a USB stick, and boot. Then you will be able to see the scheme you have bought.

There are also windoze programs like Partition Magic that do the same things. Your choice here.

You are part way there. The first thing to do is backup any windoze stuff you do not want to loose. Second in defragging. Next is to start shrinking at lease one windoze partition, to create free un-allocated space. Next move that space ( your 50 or so gig ) beyond the windoze partitions, and any hidden partitions. Then you can install to that unallocated space. Ubuntu has partitioning tools in the install, so you can create your linux partitions. BTW, the reason for moving the free space beyond windoze, is , windoze may not be able to recognize any partition that is not a Win part, and would no longer 'see' a partition beyond a linux part.

Simple right?

There is another way. Personally I don't like it. Ubuntu has something called Wubi. As I understand it, you install Linux within your windbloze file system, using Wubi. Never used it myself, since I don't trust windoze NTFS file systems.

This was created for noobs so you can install, run linux, learn it, and then do what you like later. ( a real install ).

You can find out more about Wubi on the Ubuntu forums. See this link -->http://ubuntuforums.org/

Ask questions, it took me a long time to understand some of this stuff, there is a lot to know...

Hope this helps.
 
Old 01-25-2011, 11:27 AM   #4
allend
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If you are running Win7 or Vista, then I suggest you use the native Windows disk administration tool to shrink your Windows partition prior to doing the Linux install. Earlier Windows versions do not offer this capability.

The file system format used by recent Windows versions is NTFS.
Linux offers many file system formats, with ext3 and the later version ext4 being very popular for general use.

Different file system formats can be used on different physical disk partitions. A typical Linux system occupies a number of physical disk partitions:
- the boot partition that contains the code required to boot your computer (the Master Boot Record or MBR).
- the root partition that contains almost all of your entire install
- the swap partition that is disk space reserved for temporary storage if RAM memory is not sufficient when Linux is running and that is also used if doing suspend to disk (i.e. hibernation).
Alternative partitioning schemes are also possible, but I suggest you start with the above.

For more detailed information from your distribution of choice see:
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=282018
 
Old 01-25-2011, 01:36 PM   #5
camorri
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Quote:
- the boot partition that contains the code required to boot your computer (the Master Boot Record or MBR).
The MBR is not a partition, it is a record of exactly 512 bytes, the first 512 bytes on the boot disk.

The system boot code can be on a separate partition, but that is not a requirement. It will work well in a /boot directory in the root file system.
 
Old 01-25-2011, 06:52 PM   #6
allend
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Quote:
The MBR is not a partition, it is a record of exactly 512 bytes, the first 512 bytes on the boot disk.
Technically correct, but I was trying to heed the BARNEY style request from the OP.
The bootloader can use much of the track 0 on the hard disk.
Perhaps "- the boot partition that contains the code required to boot your computer and includes the Master Boot Record or MBR." would have been better.
 
Old 01-25-2011, 07:52 PM   #7
onebuck
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by allend View Post
Technically correct, but I was trying to heed the BARNEY style request from the OP.
The bootloader can use much of the track 0 on the hard disk.
Perhaps "- the boot partition that contains the code required to boot your computer and includes the Master Boot Record or MBR." would have been better.
I think your confusing the superblock. As a user you can use the superblock to store a loader.

'MBR' is just that an area on the storage drive that contains the boot record that will be used to pass control to the loader;
Quote:
Excerpt from 'MBR';
The MBR is not located in a partition, it is located at a main boot record area in front of (with a lower LBA sector number than) the first partition. In cases where the disk has a BIOS overlay or boot manager installed, the partition table may be moved to some other physical location on the drive; e.g., Ontrack Disk Manager often places a copy of the original MBR contents in the second sector ("sector 1") then hides itself from any subsequently booted OS or application, so the MBR copy in sector 1 is treated as if it were still residing in the first sector. Read the rest at 'MBR'.
You should be able to get more information from that link to clarify things a bit.
 
Old 01-25-2011, 09:21 PM   #8
allend
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From http://tldp.org/LDP/sag/html/partitions.html
Quote:
5.9.1. The MBR, boot sectors and partition table

The information about how a hard disk has been partitioned is stored in its first sector (that is, the first sector of the first track on the first disk surface). The first sector is the master boot record (MBR) of the disk; this is the sector that the BIOS reads in and starts when the machine is first booted. The master boot record contains a small program that reads the partition table, checks which partition is active (that is, marked bootable), and reads the first sector of that partition, the partition's boot sector (the MBR is also a boot sector, but it has a special status and therefore a special name). This boot sector contains another small program that reads the first part of the operating system stored on that partition (assuming it is bootable), and then starts it.
This has nothing do with the superblock, which is a part of the filesystem construction.
From http://tldp.org/LDP/tlk/fs/filesystem.html
Quote:
9.1.2 The EXT2 Superblock

The Superblock contains a description of the basic size and shape of this file system. The information within it allows the file system manager to use and maintain the file system.
Any wonder that the OP found this "all Japanese to me"? :-D
 
Old 01-26-2011, 07:44 AM   #9
onebuck
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Hi,

This part of your post " the boot partition that contains the code" seemed to me a reference to SuperBlock.
My mis-interpretation but from that quote it would seem your implied sense of use. Sorry!

Your mis-use of the words "the boot partition" caused this confusion for me. Drop the partition part, not correct.
Semantics!
 
  


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