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Old 06-29-2008, 10:24 PM   #1
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Wink Installing ubuntu on Lenovo laptop with two Windows XP partitions

I purchased a Lenovo Thinkpad recently and want to install ubuntu on it, but I'm reluctant to proceed until I've heard from someone who's used the ubuntu automatic partitioning option on a similar machine (ThinkpadR61i). My specific concern is with Lenovo having allocated two partitions (one for working Windows XP and the other for Windows XP backup). Can ubuntu address this disk setup? Do I have to do anything but specify the percentage of disk space I want for ubuntu use?
Old 06-29-2008, 10:38 PM   #2
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In my experience it is best to partition a drive manually before you install any Linux. I am very cautious of automatic partitioning by installers.

You can use a partitioning tool such as 'gparted' running from a live CD to create your partitions. I don't know if Ububtu has this tool, but you can download and burn a live CD of it from here

Once the partitions are created then start the installation and manually choose the mount points for your linux. (Its been a while since I installed Ubuntu but I think it should provide the manual setup option)

Last edited by Greenfuse; 06-29-2008 at 10:42 PM.
Old 07-05-2008, 11:46 PM   #3
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Thumbs up Good outcome!

Thanks, Greenfuse, for your reply. It motivated several LOOOONG days of a personal refresher course in disk partitioning which left me even more uneasy about my manual partitioning abilities than trusting to the Ubuntu automatic installer. Finally the lesser of my two anxieties prevailed, i.e., I put the Ubuntu disk in the Lenovo drive, deferred to the automatic installer Guided option to squeeze out some Linux space, designated that space at about 30% of the drive, and "let 'er fly." The install finished about an hour ago and I now happily report that I can boot both Windows and Ubuntu (the first boot of Windows required that Chkdisk examine the reduced Windows home partition), all of the Windows tools that I use are so far intact and working, and, more, I am able to use the Lenovo Rescue and Recover function to backup the home directory to the C:\ drive backup partition, just as I did pre-Linux. That part of the software, by the way (i.e, Ubuntu) is running unbelievably fast!

Short version: Ubuntu automatic installer worked great on my machine. I think this is a real tribute to both the Ubuntu community and Lenovo engineers. And man, I'm thinking I'm really going to like this setup. Next week's docket: wireless networking.
Old 07-07-2008, 04:50 PM   #4
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Wireless setup in Ubuntu *can* be pretty simple and straightforward depending on your wireless chip. The Linux kernel now supports a huge variety of wireless chipsets and those that it doesn't can be set up with ndiswrapper, usually pretty easily. Check the HCL at the top of the page to read about others experience with your particular chipset.

By the way, you were very wise to educate yourself to such an extent before installing Ubuntu. Ubuntu's automatic partitioner will take over your entire disk if you are not careful. But as you have found, it works great when you know what to do.

Old 07-07-2008, 05:35 PM   #5
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Glad to hear it too. I have used the auto partitioner on Ubuntu - but only on some-one elses machine (yes, the "victim" concurred).
Having had awful experiences in the past (Mandriva, Gentoo, Ubuntu ...), I can't bring myself to trust the installers (software or developers). I always pre-partition - for Ubuntu, I (since dapper I think) use the alternate CD and manually assign partitions.

Old habits die hard - especially the good ones ...


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