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Old 03-30-2008, 01:41 PM   #1
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Dual Boot Partitioning Question Please

Hello Everyone,

After trying a dozen or so live cd's to determine which one is going to work the best with my new laptop, it appears as though Mandriva works the best, though there will still be a lot of work to do to get everything working.

I am ready to install it using a dual boot with Vista, but I have never used Vista before and there are some pre-installed partitions on this new laptop which I need to understand before I attempt this. While I intend to eventually wipe Vista from the drive, for right now I have to keep it because the imbedded wireless will not work in linux as well as the sound (ATI SB600 Azalia). So, I want to set up a dual boot but, as usual, this new laptop has a 5GB recovery partition for Vista, the Vista partition, and a "Data" partition. It is set up as follows (all according to Gparted in Mandriva):

sda1 2GB Recovery 1GB free
sda2 35GB Vista 29GB free
sda3 35GB Data 34.5GB free

Obviously,I intend to use sda3, but I do not want to damage the Vista installation at this point. I do not know what this "data" partition is, but there are only about 85MB used. If I delete this partition and install Mandriva, does anyone know what effect this will have on Vista and does Mandriva use grub?

Any replies greatly appreciated.


Old 03-30-2008, 02:05 PM   #2
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Yes Mandriva use Grub What it means for Vista to delete it I do not know I do not use Vista
But when I like to install it on partition using auto install it was complaining that 100 GB space was not enough
SO I did a auto install on 250 GB drive after updating I has only 51 GB free space and Mandriva present with 4 options
1) Mandriva
2) Desktop
3) An other Desktop
4) Mandriva fail safe
SO using 35 GB you have to do manual install

all the best
Old 03-30-2008, 03:06 PM   #3
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First, find out what that data partition is. If you haven't done anything to the computer, then it is almost certainly part of the Windows setup. You can also view it using one of your live CDs.

What is the total size of the hard drive?

My personal preference on dual (multi) boot is to keep the OS partitions small, and then use one partition for shared data.

When installing GRUB as part of the Mandriva install, it should detect Windows and configure itself automatically.

If you do not have a CD to re-install Windows, proceed with caution. And of course back up all important data first.
Old 03-30-2008, 05:44 PM   #4
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Thanks, Pixellany, I always get good advice from you. This laptop has been a nightmare and I thought I knew enough about Linux hardware compatibility to get it right when I bought one. Anyway, the data partition (I am using the live Mandriva cd to post this) does indeed contain some Windows files, but only a folder called "$RECYCLE BIN", contains another folder called desktop.ini,another folder called system volume information, and another file with a ".tag" ending. These same files are also on the recovery partition (sda1). Except for these files (which total about 85mb according to Gparted, the rest of the 35GB partition is empty. I have been hesitant to delete this partition.

And, yes, you are correct, I did not get an installation cd with the laptop, just the typical recovery cd.

Based on this, do you have any recommendations?


Old 03-31-2008, 07:51 AM   #5
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Hi, it should be safe to use the data partition. MsWindows will automatically create those recycle-files on any partitions it can find.

And you should be set to setup mandriva,

cheers, Glenn

ps. the recovery cd should be kept in a safe place.

when asked setup grub to the mbr of the first drive, don't worry you can reverse this later if need be.

Ronlau9, you have a major problem with diskspace.
If I were you, I would save everything I want in my home directory, then re-install mandriva without formatting home partition (you do have a separate partition for home don't you?).

That will reset your disk usage for root. If it is still bloated, you might find some files left over in your home directory that should be purged. Check torents and gets.

hope this is one track, cheers....

Last edited by GlennsPref; 04-01-2008 at 04:55 AM. Reason: reply ronlau9
Old 04-25-2008, 06:26 AM   #6
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Data partition

I have a computer with this Windows recovery setup of 3 partitions. From what I've read, they give you a FAT32 partition because the recovery-image restore program uses Norton Ghost which only works with FAT32. Also, with your data on a separate partition, you can do the factory-setting recovery partition restore "thing" to restore your OS partition, without losing any data on the data partition.



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