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I am a first time Linux user running windows 7 on my laptop - I own a seagate e-sata external hdd and have partitioned this external hdd into 8 NTFS partitions using windows 7 disk management / the partitions are around 30 geg each / there are 4 primary paritions and the rest are extended and logical patitions - I plan on installing several linux distributions on the external e-sata hdd which will be connected to and running on my laptop from the external hdd - in attempting to instal Federa 18 to my external hdd I was given a choice of several parition schemes - these where as follows => Standard Partition, RAID parition and LVM partition - I have been lead to believe that in this situation LVM is the way to go - I am lost as to what I should now do as I have already created the paritions on my external hdd using windows disk management services in win-7 - should I repartition the external drive using Fedoras own partition scheme and if so, should I select the LVM partition scheme given the fact I want to run several Linux distros on my external hdd - any expert suggestions ??
Last edited by synchlavier; 03-09-2013 at 10:59 AM.
if you plan to install Linux you need partitions that have a Linux filesystem (like ext3 or ext4). Not NTFS, which is Windows native and would not allow the powerful file permissions setup of Unix-like operating systems (like Linux).
To create partitions for a Linux operating system it is also recommended to use a Linux partitioning tool (like the one used in Fedora's installation disk). If you don't have data on your partitions, delete them and re-create them with Fedora's tool. You don't need LVM for now, use standard partitions.
Make sure you don't wipe out your internal HDD data while playing with the partitioner: I strongly suggest you read some documentation before you start. This will be fine:
Thank you very much for replying to my query sir and pointing me in the right direction your information was helpful indeed & cleared up much confusion on this end. As far as erasing my internal hdd I am fortunate in that my BIOS allows me to take it offline & kick in down the food chain out of the way. The Fedora installer I am using also gives me a choice of where to install the distribution. I am confused though - you said => [You don't need LVM for now, use standard partitions.] I am curious to know why you suggest Standard Partitions over LVM partition - your suggestion would certainly make my life a lot easier however, I have been lead to believe that LVM partitions are a must when setting up numerous partitions for the expressed purpose of installing other distributions - please clarify why I should first go with Standard partitions, I'd like to know. Also I would like to install BSD in one of the paritions - would that in your opinion be possible. Last thing will Slackware work with Grub as a bootloader or does it only work with LILO -
Last edited by synchlavier; 03-11-2013 at 11:18 AM.
you're welcome. I suggested to use standard partitions because this is probably the easiest way to start and to deal with most situations, learning how partitioning works. Even if you want to install multiple distributions on your disk, you can do it using standard partitions. LVM allows for more complex and flexible setups, but it is not a must for a multiboot system (I never needed it myself).
I suspect that you are confusing the Logical Volume Manager with logical partitions, and yes, these are needed if you want to have more than 4 partitions on your disk and install many distributions (please see the partitioning howto).
If you already have another distribution installed, say Debian, which has grub as its boot loader, you can install Slackware and skip the Lilo part, then reboot into your first distribution and update grub - Slackware will be automatically detected and grub will allow you to load it.
The reason I ask about Slackware is that it is a very good way to learn Linux -
It is , a great distribution.
Last edited by Philip Lacroix; 03-11-2013 at 02:40 PM.
I have one more question sir as one of your responses created a bit of confusion on this end you said - I suspect that you are confusing the Logical Volume Manager with logical partitions, and yes, these are needed if you want to have more than 4 partitions on your disk and install many distributions (please see the partitioning howto).
What are needed ? LVM or Logical Partitions ? If logical partitions are needed would they have to be NTFS or can I use standard Linux partitions for this expressed purpose ?
you do need logical partitions, you don't need LVM. Primary and logical partitions for a Linux operating system should be created using a Linux tool (like fdisk, or your distribution's default partitioner) and must be initialized (formatted) with a Linux filesystem, like ext3 or ext4. As I mentioned above, not NTFS. I would suggest that you start installing one distribution with a simple partitioning scheme, like:
Partition #1: /
The root filesystem (15-20GB would be plenty of space)
Partition #2: swap
Swap partition (with today's computers RAM is not a problem, so a swap partition with the same size of RAM should be enough for most needs). If you have 2GB RAM or more, in most situations swap will hardly be used.
Partition #3: /home
Partition for your data (size depends on your needs)
Partition #4: unused
When using tools like partman I always create a partition to fill the remaining disk space, to be 100% sure that I can easily use it later with any partitioning tool. Otherwise you might have problems. For example, if 3 primary partitions are already in place, partman will "close" the 4th extended partition right after the last logical one, which would make the remaining space unusable by tools like fdisk.
You can later install other distributions using the free space, removing partition #4. You will probably have to go through this process a few times, in order to understand what your particular needs are: there is no universal partitioning scheme. I understand that this can be a little confusing at first, but with practice and the help of documentation you will soon master this topic.
Here are some valuable resources (and many others are available):
Your reply was quite comprehensive and has cleared up the theory aspect of questions related to partions, partitioning & linux partitioning schemes for me - I now have a good roadmap from which to start - thank you very much for taking the time and putting in the effort to clarify all these points for me. I think %90 of that which makes Linux so daunting is the installation process alone as there is much to know before one can instal such an operating system - whereby windows is plug and play Linux first requires some hard knowledge to instal - It has taken me two months to get this far - my most daunting challenge was making an ISO disk as I was determined to use win-7 native inbuilt utilities and tools for this task. Trouble was ISO wasn't comming up, it turned out to be a file association issue involving virtual clone drive. The rest of the time was spent just reading about this operating system hopefully I can soon get it up and running - once I get Fedora up and running setting up the other distributions should be mechanical - first principle is always the hardest.
To be fair to Linux though, if you were using a dedicated system (instead of dual boot), all you would have to do is burn the install DVD, boot from it and take the defaults.
You wouldn't need to know about partitioning (although it would give you the option if you chose not to select the Default install).
what you are doing is great, as not everyone is wanting to understand some of the Linux backgrounds before actually installing the system. I did it myself and was also determined not to install the X server before understanding the basics of the command line interface (CLI). Now I'm glad I started that way, even if it wasn't easy.
Of course what Chris is saying above makes perfectly sense, and might spare you some frustrations. You could start with an easy (it really is, at least for mainstream distributions) default installation and build your knowledge with a working system handy, then go one step further and start editing partitions and so on. I guess the choice is up to you. Anyway, welcome to the Linux family
Last edited by Philip Lacroix; 03-13-2013 at 02:13 PM.
Oh boy!!! linux is so hard to learn for beginners. its just nightmare. nothing seems to work. can't even set ip address. even ipconfig is different. and worst of all no gui - imagine what it means to a windows guy. and linux admin friends won't help, they tell u cant understand, and laugh behind u.
unless you are just trying linux for educational purpose, then its ok. but if you want to make a career in linux, you have to learn it hard way. i.e, no gui, everything on terminal, try every command you come across and see what happens when executed. of course with some basic knowledge prior to it. all computer housekeeping through terminal only. use LVM, setup ur own bind server, ftp server, http server, yum repo, etc.
to do all this, you cant install linux on hdd, cause even a small mistake can bring the system down to screeching halt. so better learn in virtual machine, so if you make mistakes, you can rollback. and best part is you don't have to dual boot, and can have multiple distros side-by-side.
as for LVM, its just for administrative convenience and for smart space management.
To Mddesai - Thank you for the advice & the advice is well taken. I see where you're comming from on this, it is why one of the Distributions I will be using is Slackware. Regarding help from Linux Administrators what I need is not so much technical support but theory - example why use LVM over standard partitioning in Linux. I don't need someone to tell me how to do it, cause this how to information is readily available. As for hdd carshing in Linux that's why I'm not using my native hdd but an external one dedicated just for this task. Setting up IP etc.. is basic set up and installation stuff anyone can find out online. Why one would use LVM over Standard partitions is a query better asked here. To sum up Linux like Windows is not a toy before using a command read what it does & read about it's function before using it. Otherwise you could very well be in for a major fubar.
In my case I will be installing the whole Linux package GUI included - that does not mean I will be using Linux like windows indeed I will be using the command line. Speaking of Windows I do run Windows 7 & should learn the power shell -) As for reading, Linux is a reading game..
Virtualization is not an option in Windows-7 which is my native O/S - first Windows is not Linux friendly & I have read virtualizing Linux in Windows creates problems down the line for both O/Ses - However the main reason one does not want to do virtualization in Windows-7 at least is because you're several abstraction layers above the actual physical system so to speak & don't have direct access to all your machines physical resources at least not in Windows-7 - no for virtualization Windows-8 provides a much better solution through Hyper-V as you have a very think software layer between the virtualized O/S environment and the systems actual physical resources -
Last edited by synchlavier; 03-13-2013 at 10:31 AM.