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Old 05-27-2006, 02:01 AM   #1
stutes
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second hard drive as one large partition


here. Just recently installed Fedora Core 1 as a part of a dual boot with XP.

The machine has two hard drives.

I was hoping that the second hard drive, which is 160GB, would be just one large FAT32 or EXT3 partition in which I could store the files that I want to share between FC1 and XP.

But between the two installations, my second drive has ended up looking like this:
hdb1 ntfs
hdb2 ntfs
hdb3 ext3
hdb4 extended
hdb5 ext3
hdb6 linux-swap
hdb7 ext3

The last partition, hdb7, is the largest. I have no clue what hdb1-hdb6 are from---I assume from the installations of both operating systems. But I'm having difficulty mounting it hdb7, so I'm thinking of reformatting, perhaps even re-partitioning.

So my questions are this:
1. Can I wipe out ALL of the partitions on the second hard drive, without any ill effects from my XP and my FC1, and repartition the space to be one big partition? (For both, the operating systems were installed on hda partitions).
2. Should I format it to be fat32 or ext3 if I want to share the drive? (I was planning on using the "Ext2 IFS" driver in XP to read and write to the EXT3 partition)
3. If fat32 is recommend, what is the best method for formatting a partition into fat32 so that both FC and XP can read and write to the drive (I've read on some other threads that XP doesn't always recognize a FAT32 partition that was formatted using FC---something about not having an ID or a label...)

Thanks!

Andy
 
Old 05-27-2006, 02:29 AM   #2
acid_kewpie
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you can easily just wipe the whole lot out under fdisk or such like, without having any issues to be concerned about. From my experience I would sadly recommend that you create the fat32 filesystem itself under XP, as i've had little luck formatting fat32 under linux. And yeah i would use fat32 not ext3.
 
Old 05-27-2006, 02:32 AM   #3
IBall
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1) Check in /etc/fstab to see if the partitions are being mounted anywhere. If not, then you should be able to delete them with no problems to your Linux installation. Likewise, check in Windows to make sure that there is nothing on that disk.

2) FAT32 is good to share between Linux and Windows, because both can read and write. Unfortunately, FAT32 is limitted to about 50GB or thereabouts. Ext3 shouldn't have this limitation. I don't know how good the drivers to make Windows read and write ext3 actually are.

3) I suggest cfdisk to create the partitions and then mkfs.ext3 to create the filesytem. If you decide on FAT32, then mkfs.msdos, but it may be better to use Windows.

I hope this helps
--Ian
 
Old 05-27-2006, 02:00 PM   #4
David the H.
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Just out of curiosity, what does your first hard drive look like? Because that partition layout sounds exactly like what a person would have if they set up a dual boot system on the drive. By which I mean, are you absolutely certain that the drive you have the operating systems installed on isn't this one?

As for your other questions, I don't know how well the ext2 IFS driver works, but assuming it does everything you want, I'd consider it preferrable to a FAT partition, because FAT can't handle Linux things like permissions settings, symlinks or pipes. You'd always be finding yourself frustrated by the limitations of the FAT filesystem.

If you do decide to go with FAT, then definitely use a native Windows formatter to do it. As you said, Windows is often very picky about third-party implementations of things.



Edit: Just thinking, you might try booting up your system with a live cd like Knoppix, so that you can look at the partitions and what's on them from outside of either installed OS. You can also do repartitioning/reformatting from there as well using qtparted.

Last edited by David the H.; 05-27-2006 at 02:08 PM.
 
Old 05-27-2006, 03:07 PM   #5
Emmanuel_uk
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FC5 is out; you might want to upgrade from FC1
 
Old 05-27-2006, 04:19 PM   #6
haertig
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David the H.
Because that partition layout sounds exactly like what a person would have if they set up a dual boot system on the drive. By which I mean, are you absolutely certain that the drive you have the operating systems installed on isn't this one?
I was thinking the exact same thing. This certainly doesn't look like a layout that would just pop up out of nowhere.

Before wiping out your partitions, you might want to run the commands:
Code:
$ su
# fdisk -l
# mount
# ls -l /dev | grep ' [hs]d'
and post the outputs here. (That's a space character immediately before the left bracket in the grep command.)
 
  


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