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Old 09-14-2013, 04:57 PM   #1
Lola Kews
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Questions I need answers to on Mepis.


First off a little background. I was running Ubuntu 12.04 untill last week when the hard drive exploded. (I hated Ubuntu anyway).
I contacted a member here for help (rokytnji) witch he is supplying by sending me some distros (Mepis, AntiX,?).
He is quite an authority it seems to me and has really saved my donkey with his giving me some help.
I want to be ready when the distros get here so there are some questions I need to ask. You guys are the ones to ask because I really don't know much about Linux.


I purchased/installed a new drive (WD 2 TB), this was the smallest disk the store had.
That is a heck of a lot of storage space!!
I would like to multi partion the drive and put a different "distro" in each partition. Is there a limit to the number of partitions one should have for some reason? Is this a good idea or should I consider another approach?
How big should each of the partitions be? Should this all be done before any distro is loaded?
I know there is a partioning program that is usually recommended but I forgot the name.

I just want to get started right this time.
 
Old 09-15-2013, 12:55 PM   #2
pingu
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So you're going to try a bunch of distros, nice! :-)
With a 2TB drive you don't really need to worry (when I wanted to try out distros some time ago the biggest disk was about 500MB... )

"Is there a limit to the number of partitions one should have for some reason"
I think not, but maybe stay below 64 partitions. (This is a number taken out of my head, probably old and completely irrelevant today.)

"How big should each of the partitions be? "
Well, as you have *lots* of space I'd say give each distro 30GB each.
One thing to do is create a partition for your personal data, then play around as you like with the rest of the space.

"Should this all be done before any distro is loaded?"
It doesn't matter. It only matters if you intend to run non-Linux systems as well.

"I know there is a partioning program that is usually recommended but I forgot the name."
Maybe that's because what's recommended depends on the person who recommends it...
Personally I use 'fdisk' if possible, but this is purely a matter of taste!
 
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Old 09-15-2013, 02:22 PM   #3
rokytnji
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Disks were shipped on Friday. Solydk,Mepis 11, Danum-Mepis 12,Netrunner,AntiX 13.1. All are 64bit isos.

AntiX comes with grub legacy. Everything else (not sure about Mepis 11) should come with grub2.

If me. First install partition is a primary partition. Then /swap partition next, Then the rest of the drive is a logical
partition. Apply changes. Then carve up logical partition into what ever your heart desires ,(without going into details). Edit: Ok. I'd give each Linux Partition install minimum 20gig, maximum 50 gig. What is left over I'd make ext 4 or ext 3 file storage and name it /data. Only since you asked what size.

I'd Install AntiX first and install grub in AntiX to mbr. After install is done. I'd reboot and make sure that install went OK
first. Then do a

Code:
sudo apt-get update && apt-get dist-upgrade
I don't usually yse sudo in antix. I use sux first instead. Then password, to get me into a root terminal. Then without sudo I do
the above commands. Any hows. Reboot one more time to make sure everything is kosher. Then move on to trying out the other dvds next.

When ready to install. Install into next partition that I made for that distro. Install home in root. Just simpler that way for a beginner. When it comes time to install grub again. I tell that distro to install grub to root. Now. This is just my way of doing
multi boot installs. I use grub legacy to chainload grub 2 and that works for me on a quad boot dual drive I have. My

boot/grub/menu.lst in AntiX. It won't work for you/ Just showing you a example:

Code:
timeout 10
color cyan/blue white/blue
foreground ffffff
background 0639a1

gfxmenu /boot/grub/message


title AntiX  at sda1, kernel 3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp root=/dev/sda1 nomce quiet nosplash nouveau.modeset=0 vga=791
initrd /boot/initrd.img-3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp
boot

title Semplice GNU/Linux, with Linux 3.2.0-3-486
rootnoverify (hd1,1)
chainloader +1

title Vector STD Gold 7 at /dev/sda2
rootnoverify (hd0,1)
chainloader +1

title Puppy Linux 529 frugal in sdb1 dir macpup529frugal
rootnoverify (hd1,0)
kernel /macpup529frugal/vmlinuz pmedia=atahd psubdir=macpup529frugal
initrd /macpup529frugal/initrd.gz

### BEGIN AUTOMAGIC KERNELS LIST
## lines between the AUTOMAGIC KERNELS LIST markers will be modified
## by the debian update-grub script except for the default options below

## DO NOT UNCOMMENT THEM, Just edit them to your needs

## ## Start Default Options ##
## default kernel options
## default kernel options for automagic boot options
## If you want special options for specific kernels use kopt_x_y_z
## where x.y.z is kernel version. Minor versions can be omitted.
## e.g. kopt=root=/dev/hda1 ro
##      kopt_2_6_8=root=/dev/hdc1 ro
##      kopt_2_6_8_2_686=root=/dev/hdc2 ro
# kopt=root=UUID=009157e5-dcf1-465a-ae33-6fb9cf5c3b38 ro
# kopt_2_6=root=UUID=009157e5-dcf1-465a-ae33-6fb9cf5c3b38 ro nosplash quiet

## default grub root device
## e.g. groot=(hd0,0)
# groot=(hd0,0)

## should update-grub create alternative automagic boot options
## e.g. alternative=true
##      alternative=false
# alternative=true

## should update-grub lock alternative automagic boot options
## e.g. lockalternative=true
##      lockalternative=false
# lockalternative=false

## additional options to use with the default boot option, but not with the
## alternatives
## e.g. defoptions=vga=791 resume=/dev/hda5
# defoptions=

## should update-grub lock old automagic boot options
## e.g. lockold=false
##      lockold=true
# lockold=false

## Xen hypervisor options to use with the default Xen boot option
# xenhopt=

## Xen Linux kernel options to use with the default Xen boot option
# xenkopt=console=tty0

## altoption boot targets option
## multiple altoptions lines are allowed
## e.g. altoptions=(extra menu suffix) extra boot options
##      altoptions=(single-user) single
# altoptions=(init-3) 3

## controls how many kernels should be put into the menu.lst
## only counts the first occurence of a kernel, not the
## alternative kernel options
## e.g. howmany=all
##      howmany=7
# howmany=all

## should update-grub create memtest86 boot option
## e.g. memtest86=true
##      memtest86=false
# memtest86=true

## should update-grub adjust the value of the default booted system
## can be true or false
# updatedefaultentry=false

## should update-grub add savedefault to the default options
## can be true or false
# savedefault=false

## ## End Default Options ##

title      Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 3.5.2-antix.1-486-smp
root      (hd0,0)
kernel      /boot/vmlinuz-3.5.2-antix.1-486-smp root=UUID=009157e5-dcf1-465a-ae33-6fb9cf5c3b38 ro
initrd      /boot/initrd.img-3.5.2-antix.1-486-smp

title      Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 3.5.2-antix.1-486-smp (init-3)
root      (hd0,0)
kernel      /boot/vmlinuz-3.5.2-antix.1-486-smp root=UUID=009157e5-dcf1-465a-ae33-6fb9cf5c3b38 ro 3
initrd      /boot/initrd.img-3.5.2-antix.1-486-smp

title      Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp
root      (hd0,0)
kernel      /boot/vmlinuz-3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp root=UUID=009157e5-dcf1-465a-ae33-6fb9cf5c3b38 ro
initrd      /boot/initrd.img-3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp

title      Debian GNU/Linux, kernel 3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp (init-3)
root      (hd0,0)
kernel      /boot/vmlinuz-3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp root=UUID=009157e5-dcf1-465a-ae33-6fb9cf5c3b38 ro 3
initrd      /boot/initrd.img-3.3.5-antix.1-486-smp

title      Debian GNU/Linux, kernel memtest86+
root      (hd0,0)
kernel      /boot/memtest86+.bin

### END DEBIAN AUTOMAGIC KERNELS LIST
Now, you have problems installing Nvidia drivers, plus also want to multiboot. That is worth a Kegger in my neighborhood.
I guess take it slow. Don't rush things, read up on partitioning, blkid. fdisk -l, chainloading grub, grub editing.

I won't always be around so good luck.

Last edited by rokytnji; 09-15-2013 at 02:27 PM.
 
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Old 09-16-2013, 03:00 PM   #4
Lola Kews
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I don't understand everything you are saying rokytnji but will do my best at reading up and trying to get it right.
 
Old 09-16-2013, 04:21 PM   #5
johnsfine
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Given a question about lots of partitions on a 2TB disk, I expected some expert to answer with some discussion of GPT vs. MBR.

I'm disappointed the answers haven't touched on that.

I don't know enough about GPT myself to provide that answer.

But I suggest finding out whether/how to use GPT instead of MBR before setting up the system being described here. Hopefully someone who does know something about GPT will comment soon.

I think there is a limit to the number of partitions you can have with MBR partitioning, but I don't know what that limit is. With GPT partitioning the default limit is 128 partitions, but I think you can select a higher limit when you start partitioning the disk.

If you do not plan to hibernate to disk, I suggest sharing one swap partition of a few GB across all distributions (if you plan to use hibernate, deciding on the swap setup is more complicated).

I also suggest a /data partition shared across all distributions.

Beyond that, I think it is simplest for each distribution to have a single partition. Splitting /boot or /home out from / in a distribution and/or sharing /boot or /home across multiple distributions is more complicated than it is worth.

You should use UUID, rather than the partition names, in fstab and other places where partition names get long term use. Your partition names are not likely to be stable enough. The point of UUID is stability when partition names aren't. I never used UUIDs myself, so I can't tell you how, I can only tell you that you should. There are plenty of pages online telling you how (google for fstab UUID and most of the hits you get will be pages telling you how to use UUIDs)

Last edited by johnsfine; 09-16-2013 at 04:35 PM.
 
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Old 09-16-2013, 04:45 PM   #6
knudfl
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Quote:
I would like to multi partion the drive
and put a different "distro" in each partition.
I do the partitioning this way ( example 2TB disk ) :

Three primary partitions each about 150 GB. ( 1 2 3 )
An extended partition on the remaining space. ( 4 )
A swap partition 2.. 6 GB, whatever you like. ( 5 )
Next : 10 logical partitions each about 150 GB ( 6 ... 15 )
I.e. 15 partitions is the maximum for Linux distributions / OS'.

That's the way I setup my four main computers ..
( 2 or 3 hard disks each computer, 13 "Linux OS" each disk ) :
To have all versions of the most common "Linux OS" available.

-

Last edited by knudfl; 09-16-2013 at 04:49 PM.
 
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Old 09-16-2013, 05:47 PM   #7
m.a.l.'s pa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pingu View Post
Well, as you have *lots* of space I'd say give each distro 30GB each.
I normally allocate about half that for each distro (with a separate /data partition)! But as someone else said, 20-30 GB should be more than enough.

I like to use GParted for my partitioning, from a Parted Magic live session, or from elsewhere. But the KDE Partition Manager on the Mepis 11 disk works fine, too.

Mepis 11 is getting quite long-in-the-tooth. Good luck with that.
 
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Old 09-17-2013, 03:30 PM   #8
Lola Kews
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I really appreciate all the advice I am getting, but guys remember even though I did run Ubuntu 12.04 (brain dead distro) I am still very new to setting up a multy distro inviorment for the new hard drive. Without step by step instructions I am lost till I have more knowledge!

Life has thrown some very bad things my way lately that take preference over the time needed to study the links you guys have given me to learn. I do understand what you are trying to get across and that is at least a start, but I am a long way from understanding enough to tackle the project at this point.

I sure hope all of you understand, because I realize you are trying to help.
 
  


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