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marie-p 01-14-2005 08:24 AM

partitioning hard drive
I am running SuSE 9.1 right now but I will also need to have Windows XP (unfortunately!)

My plan is to format my hard drive and then install both SuSE and Windows.

How do I partition a blank hard drive?

Should I install SuSE or Windows first?

Groundhog1248 01-14-2005 09:21 AM

I would install XP first. Delete all the partitions and only creat a partititon size you need for XP. Leave the rest of the harddrive as free space. Than once you run your Linux install create the linux partitions from the free space and let GRUB run your boot options. That seemed to work nice for me. Now I'm thinking about deleting my Windows install and using that space for linux since I haven't booted into XP since installing Fedora 3.0. Also I have a second pc I run XP on for gaming.

camorri 01-14-2005 09:24 AM

You will have to install XP first. Install Suse second.

Partitioning can be done with fdisk. You will also have to format the partitions after the patitioning. Personally I like to use Partition Magic, but that is not free.

You did not say how big the drive is. Think about if you need to share files between the two operating systems before you install and format. I would advise you to create a Fat32 partition if you want to share files. XP is usually installed with NTFS file system. NTFS support in linux is not the best.

Run fdisk and format enough space for XP and install. I have not installed Suse, but most of the distros have HD partitioning tools in them. You can create the linux partitions and format them during the install.

Hope this gets you started.

marie-p 01-14-2005 09:49 AM

I think my hard drive is 40GB. Not sure.

I don't need to share files between XP and Linux.

If I format my hard drive, that will get rid of any partition that might already exist, right?

Then all I have to do is run fdisk and tell it to create 2 partitions, (let's say 30GB and 10GB) and format both partitions.

Then I can install Windows on the 10GB partition

When that's done, I install Linux on the 30GB partition. (and the SuSE install will create the partitions it needs within that)

Is that correct?

Will it then automatically give me the option of booting either SuSE or XP when I turn on my computer? (or do I have to set this up somehow?)

kornerr 01-14-2005 11:09 AM

I think PartitionMagic is the easiest program to partition your HDD under Win32. Well, I have pirated version of it (I live in Russia. And this CD costs about 3$ + many other apps like ACDSee, C++ Builder):)

Slackware 10.0.

camorri 01-14-2005 12:23 PM

Marie - P

The 10 gig 30 gig split will work. You can install Linux to a single partition, but I would recommend installing a swap partition, the OS to another partition, and your home to a separate partition. Take a look at your existing Suse system to see what tools come with Suse for partitioning and formating. The reason for this setup, is to allow you to re-install the linux system, without loosing your /home. Home is where your user data goes. If you don't separate them, you woudl have to backup and restore your user data. That can be a significant task. There are lots of threads on partitioning, and the "best" way to do it. There are as many ways as there are opinions.

Formatting does not get rid of partitions. You need to use fdisk, or partition magic to do that. There are also linux programs to delete partitions. Fdisk will create or delete a partition.

When you install linux, you should get an option to install a boot loader, either Lilo or Grub. Lilo is a little easier for the first time dual boot system. Both will work. You will need one or the other in order to boot either XP or Linux. This is not automatic as you suggest.

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