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Old 12-29-2015, 11:02 PM   #1
Microzod
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A couple of obstacles I can't solve while trying to get through my very first Linux install.


Hello.

(This post end up in a(1) obstacle but when that is solved there are another and perhaps another).

I have been trying to do a dual-boot installation of Mint 17,3 ROSE Cinnamon 64-bit but I have some difficulties following any of the multitudes of tutorials on-line.

But I have downloaded the .iso file and made a USB boot-able drive using Universal-USB-Installer-1.9.6.2, then I cleaned up my hard-drive to free some space as it was nearly full and after that I have 57,3GB free.

Then I tried using Macriume Reflect to create a backup and I found a 120GB hard-drive to use for that but it got filled up before the backup had finished, so I opted to copy all files(those which I can't replace if lost) from my main 220GB to the 120GB backup hard-drive and am hopping for the best.

Then next came the task to shrink the partition used by the currently running windows 8.1 OS but I can't.

As you can see at the printScreen below the large Win8.1 partition which isn't even half full can only provide me with 170 Mbytes.... what?
I have tried to do a de-fragmentation but it did nothing.

I haven't been able to solve this and I am really on deep water here, my adventures in programming so far has been confined to Atmel Studio and Matlab and even in Matlab I kept it low-level.

I had thought to write you people to ask if there are any great disadvantage in installing a Mint 17,3 OS on a quite fast USB stick or on a external hard-drive?

I would like to do a dual-boot but this is steeling much time and needed mental resources from my more urgent projects which demands a running Linux, I really prefer to solve the dual-boost scheme but I would not decline a solution using another tactic

Regards.
 
Old 12-29-2015, 11:47 PM   #2
wagscat123
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One thing is that if the Windows (Disk Management mmc console that you're probably using) gives you a hard time about resizing, you can resize the Windows partition in the Mint installer and possibly get better results.

The only thing you would loose by installing Mint on external media is some performance issues. Putting it on a thumbdrive would involve putting a Live system there that has persistent data storage (keeps data in between reboots). An externel HDD wouldn't be more like a regular dualboot install that you're originally aiming for, and you could use that 170 MB to make a nice boot partition.

Also worth noting is that if the PC came with 8, 8.1, or 10 (I assume it did), you're best off turning off UEFI/Secure Boot in your BIOS settings.

And, if you want to get to play with Linux before having to learn ot install it, you can run it in a Virtual Machine. VirtualBox (see virtualbox.org) is a free VM utility that you can use to simulate a computer to run Linux within.

Last edited by wagscat123; 12-29-2015 at 11:49 PM.
 
Old 12-30-2015, 12:22 AM   #3
grail
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I would also probably recommend the virtualbox route to have you up and running quickly and then also still be able to utilise your Windows machine when stuck
 
Old 12-30-2015, 04:41 AM   #4
Microzod
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Haha, I forget the actual printScreen picture:-)
I will include it at the end of this so that I have done so.

The only reason why I am not jumping onto the virtuelbox idea straight away is that I would appear to be so very close to pulling the installation of and it simply would feel a hole lot better to do it that way.

I would give it a try and do the partitioning/shrinking in the Mint set-up but before I go there I have to ask because this contradicts the information I have found on-line.

I thought that UEFI was the new BIOS and that we where looking to ensure that when I shuts down my PC in order to then on the upcoming startup boot from the USB stick and in a mode intended for UEFI I must do 2 things.
1, disable fast-start as that do mean it does not fully shuts down.
2, ensure that UEFI something is present and working and I assumed that Linux is to rely on UEFI rather than BIOS, but I was wrong was I?

Is it at all strange to have a partition with >25% free space which corresponds to 50GB and yet no longer segment than 170MB is free?
Is there any way I can manually fix this? (I ask even if the situation was made irrelevant by the Mint setup)

Is there any pitfalls I should know about going into the installation procedure?

Regards
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Old 12-30-2015, 05:15 AM   #5
ondoho
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i'm a little confused as to how much space you have, and how much you need to back up...
maybe this (windows?) backup program is not good?

what i'd do:
  1. make a linux live bootable usb stick. why not linux mint.
  2. boot from that
  3. format your supposedly empty 120gb external drive to ext4 (gparted)
  4. install a linux backup program, and use that to back up what you need to your 120gb drive
  5. use gparted to shrink partitions on the internal drive (keep in mind it takes a loooooong time) and create a new one for linux mint (min. 10GB, i'd say about 50GB is more than sufficient if you can store your media elsewhere
 
Old 12-30-2015, 05:22 AM   #6
syg00
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Windows tends to have unmoveable files - usually right at half way through a NTFS system partition, but certainly may be later. It will not move them - but gparted usually will. I would also do the shrinking from a Linux liveCD - gparted is the obvious one. Get all the partitioning work done before starting on the Mint install.

Turn fast start off is good, and so is staying with UEFI - Mint installs well on UEFI, and will use that EFI partition Win8 has created. Mint will create a directory on that partition and not interfere with Win8.

Last edited by syg00; 12-30-2015 at 05:23 AM.
 
Old 12-30-2015, 08:20 AM   #7
beachboy2
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Microzod,

As you have discovered, dual-booting can become very problematical.

One of the better guides, from Dedoimedo, is here:
http://www.dedoimedo.com/computers/d...-8-ubuntu.html

As other LQ members have advised previously, it may be much simpler to install VirtualBox on your Windows machine and then install a Linux operating system within VirtualBox.

VirtualBox for Windows hosts from here:
https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads

Install Linux Mint on Windows host:
http://www.everydaylinuxuser.com/201...s-virtual.html

Quote:
I really prefer to solve the dual-boost scheme but I would not decline a solution using another tactic.
In my opinion the VirtualBox route has far fewer pitfalls than the dual-boot method.
It is your decision.
 
Old 12-30-2015, 09:21 AM   #8
yancek
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The image you posted above of the windows Disk Management tool looks a little strange to me. Not sure why it would show three Recovery partitions but it also shows an EFI partition and all four of these should have windows filesystems. Note that the capacity for each is equivalent to the free % and they show as 100% free. When I go to Disk Management in windows, this is what is shown for any "Linux" partition but the windows partitions are accurate and show correct free space. Not sure what's up with that.

You can try Mint in VirtualBox as suggested. Other options, have you tested the Mint flash drive to see if it runs well and whether you have any problems with hardware? If it seems to run well, you can try Mint on a flash drive with persistence so that you can save data on reboot which is not possible with a DVD or standard flash drive installation. You can also do a full install to either a flash drive or an external usb drive. Since you appear to be using EFI, you might give the site below a read on dual booting with windows and Ubuntu/Mint.

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/UEFI
 
Old 12-31-2015, 03:11 AM   #9
Microzod
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Yes now I will opt to go with a virtual solution, it would seem that new problems creeps up from behind jut as "the largest" problem where to be solved.

I may haver been somewhat diffuse about my storage space, I have:
  • a 220GB internal SSD hard-drive(which with cleaning now has ~50GB free space)
  • a 1TB external eSATA(or what ever they are called, you know the standard laptop hard-drive since some years now) but this has not much space left ether.
  • I have also a 120GB external hard-drive which is newly formatted BUT it is so old that its horribly slow and makes enough noise as to make me think it has not much life left in it.
  • And finally I have one(maybe two) Sandisk Cruzer 32GB(USB2.0)

So I will read up on virtual environments and get back here.

Regards
 
Old 12-31-2015, 03:13 AM   #10
Microzod
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I manage not to miss the previously posted and most suitable links:-)
 
Old 12-31-2015, 05:48 AM   #11
ondoho
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^ you can edit posts you know.

anyhow, using linux in a virtual machine (i suggest using virtualbox, it's really easy to use) does not impact you unused 50GB or the external drive.
you are installing it "inside windows" so to speak.

try it, by all means, but evtl. you will want to install it on "bare metal".
for that, the 50GB free space are totally sufficient.
youjust have to tell your installer explicitely where to install to; there will come a point where it asks "Are you sure this is correct? this cannot be undone!" - well, at that point you should be 100 sure that you know where it is installing to.
if you care to keep your windows install, that is.

as for tutorials, your first choice should always be the web pages of the distro in question.
 
Old 12-31-2015, 11:57 AM   #12
Gsidious
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Try disabling swap & fastboot

As ssgy00 stated, you have free space, but files that Windows is unwilling to re-locate. I would recommend that you disable swap/Virtual Memory/pagefile in Windows, (System Properties->Performance Options, Advanced tab->Virtual Memory, Change...). Turn off swap, "No paging file", also disable fastboot, then reboot. Try the defrag again and then try the re-size of the partition in Disk Management again. Maybe that will give you the space you need. The Mint installer could probably handle the partition re-size as well, but I think its safer to let Windows handle it if you can. After the install is done, you can go back and re-enable swap/Virtual memory and fastboot again if desired.
 
Old 01-02-2016, 06:28 PM   #13
Microzod
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I see, the only two things I know for sure regarding Linux is that I have a **** of a lot to learn and I need to dissolve a few misconceptions which I have developed during my yeas using Windows.

But I feel this task has gotten out of control and I really hate it when you get into a project and move on to fast only to end up with a much more complex project than it was suppose too be and nothing works anyway.

And I need to get my head around Linux while also learn to utilize two new SDKs(I have never used 1 to begin with) in order to achieve the design a an application for a Pebble watch which also demand a application for a Android phone.

And I have realized that I should use the Windows option of using cloudpebbl.com to get to know the devices, so I will take some time to do that while at the same time familiarise my self with Linux through virtualbox and then after that's done try to do it all in Linux.

I want to thank you all for your help, and I should not assume that using virtuelbox will be straight forward but know you know where I'm at.

Right now my brain is pretty much fried so I'll stop for tonight and continue to respond regarding the space and location of a possible install of Linux.

Regards
 
Old 01-03-2016, 05:32 AM   #14
ondoho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Microzod View Post
I should not assume that using virtuelbox will be straight forward
i think that's where you're wrong.
just download a linux distro .iso, and use virtualbox' "New" wizard to start. it's really quite simple to use.
 
Old 01-03-2016, 10:49 AM   #15
wagscat123
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There's no risk of data loss neither, nor worries about partitioning. With most distros just hitting "Next" in their setup wizards will be enough. Mint and openSUSE have VirtualBox additions, and for a VM in particular I'd reccomend Mint MATE edition
 
  


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