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Old 01-14-2012, 10:02 AM   #1
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Question Checking and repartitioning hard drive

System: Ubuntu 11.10, unity, Asus K53E laptop.


I've been using a Mac for four years. I've just made the move to Linux. (I've tried Linux before but never much more then trying it on a CD or installing on an old machine.)

I did a clean install on an Asus. When it asked for partitions I gave 100Gb to "/" and 500Gb to /usr as on the Mac that's where users accounts are stored. I thought I was being sensible with that setup. Now I'm unsure if I've made a novice mistake and want to know how I can check and correct it - preferably with a gui tool.

Would someone advise the best way to partition my laptop for ubuntu's file system? What tool to use? And can I avoid reinstalling and starting from scratch again?

Thank you for any advice, it's greatly appreciated,

Old 01-14-2012, 10:34 AM   #2
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Here is my partition scheme. I am using Arch Linux on a Lenovo N500 4233-54U.\

/ ext4 20GB
swap swap 6GB
/boot ext2 2GB
/home ext4  433GB
Arch Linux requires a /boot partiton with a minimum of 100mb. as for *buntu last i checked you could get away with putting the /boot folder under the root file system.
I would most indefinably recommend a separate /homed partition for ease of upgrades between releases. IMHO Ubuntu/Debian isn't exactly a "stable distribution" I f your looking to dive in to Linux i would check out either Arch or Slackware. As for the doubled swap partition i do this out of habit.
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Old 01-14-2012, 10:53 AM   #3
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You should be able to install Gparted as a gui to manage disk partitions. There are lots of other good choices, I use KDE Partition Manager, since I have KDE desktop installed.

The partition sizes, I would change. Things are a little different in linux. The root partition is where your system goes, most often not user files. I have two installs, on one system I have a 10 gig root, and the other a 20 gig root. My main system is Slackware, with the 20 gig root. It is 75 % full, and runs without problems. I have a lot of stuff installed, so you don't need 20 gig's. Keep in mind you need some space on root, since /tmp is there, and it is used by the system.

Users data goes in /home. I highly recommend this goes on a different partition to / ( root ). The reason, when you install, or upgrade your system, your user files will be preserved if you do not format /home. With your current setup, /home is on the same partition as root, so, if you upgrade, or install, everything in /home is toast.

/usr can be a different partition, if you like. I went this way on my main system. I have backups there, and my audio files there. Having it on a separate partition is the same reason as /home being separate from root.

The other thing you should create, is a swap. The size depends on the amount of ram you have. If you have a gig of ram, or more, a small swap is all you need. Some might say you don't need on at all, however with a very large disk, one doesn't take up much space, and is insurance. If you have less that a gig of ram, then you need one. Linux does not create a swap file like windoze, its a separate partition, with its own file system type. Linux will run without one, but performance may suffer, if you don't have one and are low on ram.

So, I would say 10 - 20 gig's for / ( root ).

swap a gig is overkill, you have a large disk, so no big deal.

/home as large as you want, and a separate /usr if you like. Your choice on /usr.

Hope this helps.
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Old 01-14-2012, 11:00 AM   #4
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cfdisk/gparted work for partitioning a decent layout and format depends on how you plan to use it my general partition style is 50-100MB /boot ext2 64MB swap 4GB / ext4 (btrfs looks interesting as well) and usually the rest of my hdd to /home (also ext4 though again btrfs looks interesting havn't tried it yet). I have a 1TB hdd but most of my data is in /home and I don't install useless crap and I put more ram in if I'm using swap space for anything other than a few idle tasks anyway. The separate boot isn't likely needed and could probably be changed to /var for log files to be separated. Pick a partition style that works for you.
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Old 01-14-2012, 12:38 PM   #5
Registered: Jun 2005
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Wow. Just wow! That's some fantastic responses.
I'm going to try gparted tonight - and report back!
Hopefully I can repartition without reinstalling.

All of your examples help a lot.

Thanks again. Brilliant help,

Old 01-14-2012, 04:22 PM   #6
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I booted to the live cd. Changed the partitions with gparted. Copyed the files and moved the link for home.

I also followed these instructions:

Thanks again. All your advice showed me the right direction and it was a lot painless then I expected.




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