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E.T.Smith 02-03-2004 09:33 PM

Installing Fedora as a dual-boot to a WindowXP system; can't partition HD
Good Day;

This is my first post here, and I fear I'm about as newbie as they come. I have no prior experience with Linux or any computer programming for that matter. I'm one of those "I hit the on switch and it goes" sorts.

For various reasons I got it into my head to try and install Fedora on my new Dell, largely because I want to see what the rising alternative to the Big Boy is like, and Fedora seemed as user friendly as I could expect.

Unfortunately I'm flumoxed. Not yet sure I want to completely wipe the standard OS and replace it, I'm trying to set up a dual-boot system, just like it tells me to in the appendix. The first step seems to be partitioning some HD space away from Windows. I have tried to use the Windows Computer Management graphic interface, the DOS prompt and the FIPS utility that came with Fedora. The first doesn't seem to even acknowledge that their's any space available (unlikely on a 40GB drive), the syntax needed for the second seems unknown to me and FIPS doesn't recognize whatever format Windows has used to mark its territory.

So I'm stuck, can't even get the space to <i>try</i> an installation. I am optimistically hoping that there is some obvious solution I am not seeing simply because of my lack of experience. I would appreciate it if anyone here could help me out, so I can get Fedora up and running and have even more questions to ask you.


claudius753 02-03-2004 09:49 PM

Try using bootit NG to partition. Get the file, and then make a startup disk with it by running the program in windows. Restart your computer and use that to resize your windows partition (probably NTFS if xp or FAT 32 if 98). Get at least 5 gigs or more free.

Then install fedora on the newly created free space.

You gan get BootIt ng at thats how i did it to get Red Hat 9 installed (Fedora is basically Red Hat 10).

Have fun, and welcome to the new world of unbridled power that a linux system can afford you.


Lohan 02-03-2004 10:08 PM

Well the _easiest_ thing to do would be to get a copy of Partition Magic, which will do just fine at chopping that Windows partition down to size. It has a graphical interface, and will run from Windows. However, it'll run you anywhere from $30 (online) to $80 (CompUSA).

The second _easiest_ (but still easy) thing to do would be to try a different distribution. Mandrake Linux and (I believe) Suse, come with a utility which can resize Windows partitions. This utility will be run as part of the installation.

The much more adventurous route (but no longer easy) would be to download a live-CD distribution, such as Knoppix, burn it to a CD, and then boot from said CD. You may then use a Windows-partition resizing tool that comes on the CD, such as QTparted (graphical) or ntfsresize (command line).

The live-CD approach is a great way to try Linux without committing to anything at all, as it is a complete distribution running off of one CD. Just remember, it runs slow because 1) it's loading from your CD, and 2) everything is super-compressed. A _real_ installation of Linux is really quite fast, and can breath life into aging hardware.

Whichever route you decide to take, you know the story.... be sure and back up all your important data. Chances are, everything will be okay, but you can never be too safe. Well, yes you can, but backing up your data has never been known to create an excess of safety. Oh, unless you use the live-CD -- then backing up would be an excess of saftey, as this method doesn't even touch your existing configuration.

Good luck! And have fun! Linux is fun! Yes!

E.T.Smith 02-06-2004 09:14 PM

Unfortunately, both of your proposed solutions involve $$$ which I am not willing to spend. Much of the appeal Linux holds for me is the avoidance of such an expensive tech race.

Are there any free or trial versions of Partitioning software I could use?


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