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Old 09-24-2011, 02:27 PM   #1
Jack_Coleman
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Putting 3 Distros on External hard drive. Help?


Hi, i recently ordered a Seagate Expansion 750gb USB 3.0 hard drive and i want to put 3 distros on it, Ubuntu, Fedora, and OpenSuSe. i want to put them on the Drive because i go to many different computers and i would like to not have to use windows.

What i want basically is for the 3 distros to share my /home folder and possibly whatever folders hold downloaded programs (im not sure what it is, usr/bin maybe, im kind of a new), if thats possible.

Anyway i want to have the hard drive contain the 3 distros and then an extra partition with a couple hundred gigs extra for other files, is it possible to have the extra partition in FAT32 and the linux ones in ext4 so i can only see the extra one in windows. also im not sure how to make it use one bootloader.

Any help?
 
Old 09-24-2011, 05:31 PM   #2
andrewthomas
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I would install Ubuntu last, since it uses grub2 and will pick up the other 2 distros.

As for a shared /home, I would use a different username for each distribution to avoid contaminated configuration files.

As to the shared /data partition, I would suggest NTFS.
 
Old 09-24-2011, 06:19 PM   #3
jefro
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Many of the installers will fix up either one to do the correct choices. Not all use the same version of grub so you may have to chain load another. I'd start by making your fat area then load up your OS's.

BE SURE you read the installers warnings and messages. Be sure to put your loader on the usb drive. To be safe take out your current hard drive.

Last is you might need to use uuid to get it to move from machine to machine.


As above fat is only useful if you have older W98 or an OS that doesn't support reading of ntfs.

I would not use a /home to share between. You can use a shared folder but not home easily.
 
Old 09-24-2011, 06:36 PM   #4
TobiSGD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack_Coleman View Post
What i want basically is for the 3 distros to share my /home folder
As mentioned above, no problem, but you should use different usernames in every distro, or it may happen that the mixed configuration files will mess up your desktop settings.

Quote:
possibly whatever folders hold downloaded programs (im not sure what it is, usr/bin maybe, im kind of a new), if thats possible.
If you mean installed programs, than this will definitely mess up all three systems, don't do that. The binaries are most likely not compatible between the distros.

Quote:
is it possible to have the extra partition in FAT32 and the linux ones in ext4 so i can only see the extra one in windows.
I wouldn't recommend FAT32, it really has its limitations and is simply outdated. Go for NTFS.

So basically it should like this:
partition 1: distro 1,
partition 2: distro 2,
partition 3: distro 3,
partition 4: shared home,
partition 5: NTFS for Windows use.
 
Old 09-24-2011, 08:54 PM   #5
Jack_Coleman
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So install ubuntu last and make sure to make my username, for example "jack-suse", "jack-fedora", or "jack-ubuntu", depnding on the distro, and how would i go about making the distros recognize my central /home, is it a simple settings change?
 
Old 09-24-2011, 09:00 PM   #6
andrewthomas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack_Coleman View Post
So install ubuntu last and make sure to make my username, for example "jack-suse", "jack-fedora", or "jack-ubuntu", depnding on the distro, and how would i go about making the distros recognize my central /home, is it a simple settings change?
That sounds like a good naming scheme.
When you do the installations you will have to choose manual partitioning and select the partition you want to use as your root and choose to format that partition, also choose the shared /home but do not format that partition. Each distribution should add the proper entries to your /etc/fstab for you.
 
  


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