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Old 11-06-2009, 01:07 AM   #1
lupusarcanus
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Unhappy New External Hard Drive -- Cannot format or partition AT ALL


Hello LQ.

Hang with me friends, it's a long post.

I have an unexpected problem: I just bought a new FreeAgent Go 320 GB USB 2.0 External Hard Drive. It's intended usage was to take it, wipe it, and put a fresh install of Linux on it. (My system supports 2.0 and USB boot with BIOS configuration)

Everything went well until I put Gparted in to get everything partitioned. When I went to my external drive to get working, I noticed a keys symbol next to the ntfs identifier. I couldn't do anything, not delete, format...nothing. Their options were faded out.With some troubleshooting, I decided to enter the installer and manually specify the partition there. I couldn't divide the Drive to include a linux-swap partition.

But in WinXP, the drive was not encrypted, or locked, and drag-and-drop functionality was in full effect. I copied-and-pasted the programs it came with (which let me encrypt things as an option if I needed too) into My Documents just in case problems arose.

I am afraid of just forcing the installer to install the OS. And another worry is it came up with a message that re-affirmed my inability to create a linux-swap partition.

Concerns are:
1. I looked up online somewhere that a linux-swap partition is the equivalent to the paging file in Windows, which basically sets apart a space in the hard disc to act as RAM. By default, my pre-installed WinXP was configured to have a paging file three times bigger than normal. This is because my netbook only has 1 GB RAM. If linux-swap does in fact perform like a paging file, I really do want it.
2. The "lock." Why is it there? How do I remove it?
3. If I force the installer to install, will it work? Will my external drive not be corrupted?
4. If I wipe the drive with a more powerful utility or command, would/could it work?

Notes: GParted shows 71.xx MB are already taken up on the drive. Is that the firmware not allowing me to partition it?

Notes: I have used Linux before. Not a newbie, but sure as heck not advanced by any stretch of the imagination.

Notes: Computer - Acer Aspire One D250 Netbook. _ 16 GHz Intel Atom processor. 1 GB RAM. 160 GB Internal Sata HDD.

Notes: Drive came with software including; backup program(s) and optional single-file encryption.




Again, sorry for the long post and thanks for your precious time. It's my birthday tomorrow - and I really wanted to have Linux on it by then so i could start playing with it. Help is really APPRECIATED. I can not stress how helpful you guys have been to me in the past.

Sincerely frustrated,

leopard
 
Old 11-06-2009, 01:16 AM   #2
indiajoe
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Did you try unmounting the external hardisk?
 
Old 11-06-2009, 01:21 AM   #3
lupusarcanus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by indiajoe View Post
Did you try unmounting the external hardisk?
I'm probably wrong here, but wouldn't that make it impossible to partition it or install Ubuntu to it?

Appreciated and needed help,

leopard

Last edited by lupusarcanus; 11-06-2009 at 01:22 AM.
 
Old 11-06-2009, 01:52 AM   #4
indiajoe
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unmount required

Hi
To format a partition using gparted you should first unmount the partition.
While formating you are changing the format. and mounting is always done taking the format of the partition into consideration. So naturally you have to umount it before formatting.
After partitioning , you can mount it (ubuntu will do that automatically) to install in it.
-indiajoe

Last edited by indiajoe; 11-06-2009 at 01:54 AM.
 
Old 11-06-2009, 02:29 AM   #5
lupusarcanus
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by indiajoe View Post
Hi
To format a partition using gparted you should first unmount the partition.
While formating you are changing the format. and mounting is always done taking the format of the partition into consideration. So naturally you have to umount it before formatting.
After partitioning , you can mount it (ubuntu will do that automatically) to install in it.
-indiajoe
Thanks indiajoe!

This worked perfectly; unmounted it and everything went right. I still don't fully understand why it worked (will google tonight!) Thanks-a-many to you and I gave you the blue thumbs up. It worked. Problem solved thanks to indiajoe. Thank you once more.

Sincerely,

leopard
 
  


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