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Old 12-20-2011, 11:52 PM   #1
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Registered: Dec 2011
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Help Installing 11.10 alongside Win7 (partition help)

So I've been going over this for a couple of days now on the Ubuntu site trying to figure out how to configure my HD in order to run alongside Win7.

Stock configuration has 4 partitions on a 500.1GB drive;
2 sections of 241 gb (1 of which is dedicated to win7 & files, the other to be dedicated to Ubuntu)
1 system recovery 16gb
and 1 boot (I think)

They read as follows from the installation table

/dev/sda1 NTFS 11991 of 16106
/dev/sda2 NTFS 35 of 104
/dev/sda3 NTFS 3223 of 241946
/dev/sda4 NTFS 86577 of 241948
I'm going to make a WILD guess here and say that sda4 is my Win7 partition as I have 86 gb used for stuff =)

Outside of that I don't really know where the 3.x gb came from on sda3 as it shows as a blank drive in windows and in explorer through Ubuntu. Theres a few things there but it's all trash and it is left over from install of visualC++ in windows.

When I try to configure the install, I can't figure out how to select the partition I want to use for linux (sda3) and as well when I try anything it gives me an error : "No root file system is defined."

I know it's not really awesome to post a question as a first post, but I'm just about at my wits end and I don't have anything to contribute yet =( I'm good with Windows, just not Linux yet, so any help would be greatly appreciated.

SO, sum of question(s): How should I configure my partition menu and where should I place my root system and how do I do it?

Thanks in advance guys/gals,
I've been poking around here and y'all seem like a real stand-up bunch.
Old 12-21-2011, 12:35 AM   #2
Registered: Oct 2004
Location: USA
Distribution: Ubuntu-Server, Mac OS X, Arch Linux
Posts: 356

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Here is the way I typically set up my partitions for a desktop system:

/dev/sda1 : 100 MB Primary Partition used as Windows System Partition (which is allocated automatically by Windows)
/dev/sda2 : 30 GB Primary Partition Mounted as C: for Windows Installation Partition
/dev/sda3 : 100 GB Primary Partition Mounted as D: for Windows Data Partition
/dev/sda4 : Extended Partition which matches the size of the remaining disk
/dev/sda5 : 100 MB EXT2 Logical Partition mounted at /boot and boot flag enabled (to boot Linux off this partition)
/dev/sda6 : 15 GB EXT4 Logical Partition mounted at / which is the root of the filesystem
/dev/sda7 : 2 GB Swap Partition (I have 8 GB of RAM and don't even come close to using swap unless running lots of Virtual Machines)
/dev/sda8 : Remaining Free Space mounted at /home for user data at EXT4

Although, sometimes I'll make /dev/sda3 (the D:\ Windows Drive) as big as possible and mount it in /etc/fstab from Linux so that Windows and Linux share it as a data partition. This makes it so that regardless what OS I'm in, my files are always in the same place.

The reason I use D:\ as the data partition is because it's separate from the C:\ installation which means I could wipe out the whole OS and my data would still be there. Plus, I can copy D:\* and everything that is copied is my data and not operating system data.

Let me know if this helps!

Last edited by kasl33; 12-21-2011 at 12:37 AM.
Old 12-21-2011, 03:05 PM   #3
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Registered: Nov 2009
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Hey, dude! I'm kinda new with Linux yet and I may be wrong, but I think I know what's going on
I was having some issues while trying to install ubuntu alongside with Windows 7 as well
The thing is: My laptop's manufacturer keeps a partition reserved in order to restore the system to the factory default and
another partition is used, at least I think so, to manage things like that
when you install Windows, it takes another partition, reserved for the operating system (this one is small and you can't use), and another one, that is what you'll use.
thus, 4 partitions so far.
If I'm not mistaken, I think you can have only 4 primary partitions in a single hard drive. Other kinds of partitions, like logical may allow you to create more but, by default, these ones I've mentioned are primary, so you cannot create any more.
So what did I do to install ubuntu? via wubi
thanks goodness, cause my Windows didn't take so long to crash and now I can use my computer thanks to ubuntu.
I don't know if there's another solution, but this one worked.
I hope it can be of use


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