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Old 07-04-2012, 07:07 PM   #1
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Distribution: Ubuntu 11.04, Ubuntu 11.10, Ubuntu 12.04
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Unable to mount partition after shrinking

Hi all,

I tried installing Ubuntu 12.04 on a HP Mini netbook.

During the installation process I was asked to choose the partition on which Ubuntu would have lived on. I chose the Windows (7) partition and resized it. After the resize there was (still is) an unsable space. I stopped the procedure there and I tried to boot normally through Windows to back-up before proceeding. Unfortunately I wasn't even able to boot into Windows. Using the USB stick with the Ubuntu live version I tried mounting the partition to back-up the files through terminal.

I am not able to mount the partition yet. The process and messages straight from my terminal are listed below.

I am asking for the king assistance of anyone that could help me.

ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ sudo fdisk /dev/sda

Disk /dev/sda: 250.1 GB, 250059350016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 30401 cylinders, total 488397168 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0xb8abbf97

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *        2048      409599      203776    7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda2          409600   101854431    50722416    b  W95 FAT32
/dev/sda3       450586624   488183807    18798592    7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda4       488183808   488395119      105656    c  W95 FAT32 (LBA)

ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ sudo mount -t vfat /dev/sda2 /media/SDA2
mount: wrong fs type, bad option, bad superblock on /dev/sda2,
       missing codepage or helper program, or other error
       In some cases useful info is found in syslog - try
       dmesg | tail  or so
Thank you in advacne for your time and kind help.

Old 07-04-2012, 07:56 PM   #2
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Registered: Apr 2008
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I was asked to choose the partition on which Ubuntu would have lived on. I chose the Windows (7) partition
Is this a wubi install where you are installing Ubuntu inside windows as a program? After resizing, you indicate you "stopped the procedure", what procedure are you referring to? Were you planning to create a new partition on which to install Ubuntu? Are you trying to back up your windows 7 files from sda2? I would be very surprised if windows 7 was on a fat32 partition unless that is some data partition you created?

You didn't actually use uppercase letters for SDA2? is that a typo?
Old 07-04-2012, 09:21 PM   #3
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Problem 1: Making a backup is usually the procedure that is done before doing system critical tasks, like installing an OS or re-partition the harddisk.

Problem 2: /dev/sda2 is most likely not your Windows partition, it is most likely a service partition with either manufacturer tools or, more likely, but may be in your case worse, the recovery partition. Windows 7 will not install on FAT partitions. So to backup your files you should try to mount /dev/sda3 instead.

Problem 3: You already have 4 primary partitions (sadly, this setup is nowadays pretty common on Laptops), so you can't add partitions without first to delete a partition and create an extended partition. It may be easier to revert your partitioning and use Wubi or a virtual machine instead.

Problem 4: You can't mount /dev/sda2, which most likely is your recovery partition. This indicates that the filesystem on that partition, making it very difficult to re-install Windows in case your installation is damaged. Unless you have created a Recovery DVD or have a Windows 7 DVD available.


mountpartitions, partition recovery

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