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Old 04-26-2014, 03:41 AM   #1
StuartK24
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What is the best disk partitioning tool?


I have recently bought a laptop which is running Windows 7. I want to set up a Linux partition. Does anyone have any recommendations for my choice of partitioning software. Alternately, is there any partition software that some of you have tried that have given you grief.
 
Old 04-26-2014, 04:33 AM   #2
itsgregman
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You would be best to use the built in Windows partition manager to shrink the Windows partition.
Using any other will likely leave you unable to boot Windows.
Just use the windows partition manager to shrink your Windows drive, then use whatever partition tool you like to set up the Linux partitions on the free space. Personally I use Parted Magic.
 
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Old 04-26-2014, 08:02 AM   #3
joe_2000
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I have shrunk windows partitions many times using gparted, and never had issues. Gparted is nice because it's included in the vast majority of live distros and has a pretty intuitive gui.

EDIT: One piece of information that might be worth adding: When you shrink a partition, you want to move the end of it towards the beginning, not the other way round. Moving the beginning will lead to a lot of data being moved, which makes the operation take for ages. (Typically many hours)
If you do have to do it, make sure to not interrupt the process due to low battery of energy saving options or anything like that...

Last edited by joe_2000; 04-26-2014 at 08:05 AM.
 
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Old 04-26-2014, 10:16 AM   #4
yancek
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I used Parted Magic a few years ago to shrink the windows 7 partition and wasn't able to boot windows so I would agree with using the windows partitioner at least to shrink windows. This was on a new system. GParted is an excellent tool and I expect it would work.
 
Old 04-26-2014, 09:03 PM   #5
jefro
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I too would use itsgregman's suggestion and let Windows 7 try to shrink what it can.

Be sure you know how to recover this system. At least backup to remote media with system state.

Also if the laptop has a large drive you may also need to move windows (and or recovery partiton) up to make room for a /boot partition.

It may be possible to use usb flash or usb hard drives just as well as a free virtual machine.
 
Old 04-26-2014, 11:56 PM   #6
ken7
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I used freeware a Mini Tool that you can download from CNET:
http://download.cnet.com/MiniTool-Pa...-10962200.html
As usual you have to skip over offers to install other stuff. I found it worked perfectly and it is very user friendly so that even I did not screw up. As usual you should make sure to back stuff up before partitioning. I installed a dual boot system with Windows XP and Antix and it came out perfectly. However, as others have said if Windows 7 already can do it, you might not want to be bothered trying something else. The Mini Tool has an excellent rating. Antix has a quite nice dual boot screen when it starts up giving you time to choose and indicating clearly what each choice is and it has always worked perfectly for me.
 
Old 04-27-2014, 11:01 AM   #7
onebuck
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Member Response

Hi,

As other members have suggested to use the disk management tools provided by Win/7. Before the resizing be sure to do a disk de-fragmentation then resize the space via tools.
 
Old 04-27-2014, 03:21 PM   #8
Doug G
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gparted live cd for me. No matter what tool you use, make sure to backup any important data off the partition before resizing.
 
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Old 04-27-2014, 03:57 PM   #9
albinard
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Just to look for a middle ground between the "gotta use Windows" and the "Gparted is fine", here is a small observation: I've always had success shrinking Windows partitions with Gparted, but I always defragmented the Windows partition before shrinking, sometimes even defragging twice in a row.
 
Old 04-29-2014, 05:55 AM   #10
itsgregman
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I guess I should have been more specific in my reply.
With the release of Windows Vista MS began including a partition manager with Window and also tweaked something in the NTFS file system that caused Windows to become unbootable if any other partition tool was used to shrink the Windows partition.
It's very possible that a fix has been implemented to fix that since that time, but since I haven't heard anything about that I went the safe route with my answer.
Any partition tool will work with any version of Windows from XP on back but since all of those are obsolete I didn't think it relevant to mention them, also because the OP said he had Windows 7.
 
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Old 04-29-2014, 06:35 AM   #11
EODSteven
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I wanted to weigh in on this, I love everything Gnome and IMHO Ubuntu wouldn't exist without it, so my vote is GParted!
 
Old 04-29-2014, 01:07 PM   #12
Germany_chris
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I use gparted live but I also don't own anything running Windows..
 
Old 04-29-2014, 02:32 PM   #13
JeremyBoden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itsgregman View Post
I guess I should have been more specific in my reply.
With the release of Windows Vista MS began including a partition manager with Window and also tweaked something in the NTFS file system that caused Windows to become unbootable if any other partition tool was used to shrink the Windows partition.
It's very possible that a fix has been implemented to fix that since that time, but since I haven't heard anything about that I went the safe route with my answer.
Any partition tool will work with any version of Windows from XP on back but since all of those are obsolete I didn't think it relevant to mention them, also because the OP said he had Windows 7.
Windows NT had a partition manager.
To dual boot a Windows 7 machine I used lots of defragmenting + the Windows partition manager.
It left a few files at the end of a half-empty partition, so I used gparted to force a severe reduction.

It worked fine.
 
Old 06-03-2014, 07:32 AM   #14
StuartK24
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Thanks to everyone for their input and sorry I am replying so late but I have been busy with other life stuff. I want to go ahead and use GParted but I am not sure which version to download. There is one for i486 and i686 architecture. I am guessing my computer is i686 but I am not sure. I have an Intel i5 in a Lenovo Thinkpad E520.
 
Old 06-03-2014, 07:36 AM   #15
pan64
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i686 should be ok
 
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