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Old 10-19-2007, 01:41 AM   #1
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Red face Linux partitioning help

i have a computer with two hard drives. i would like to install linux on the second hard drive if possible and then dual boot them without touching any of the existing data or software.

i tried to install it from the disc and it went through most of the installation but when it got to the partitioning part it came up with an error and quit.

i just need to know what exactly i need to do to make linux run properly on my system while dual booting it and not modifying any of the existing data.

if there is an easier/better way of accomplishing this same thing please let me know!!

also i do have space left on my first hard drive so if necessary i could move some of the data to the secondary drive and partition the first drive.
the only thing is, when in the partition part of the installer it only shows my second hard drive...

im a really big noob at all of this and i have never used linux before but i want to learn!


thank you so much!!!
john
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Old 10-19-2007, 08:29 AM   #2
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Default Re: Linux partitioning help

First, which distro are you installing?
I'll guess due to its popularity of late you were using Ubuntu.
What was the error you received when trying to partition?
Ubuntu uses a version of parted for the install which should be fairly self-explanatory.
Since you are new, I would only recommend making three partitions; a root drive, a home drive and a swap drive. If you do not know how big to make them, you may follow my advice or use the guided partitioning method.
the / (root) drive should be given about 25% of your drive... at least 5 GB or more.
Your home drive will contain all your data, so make this fairly large.
Lastly, your swap drive should be double your RAM.... or just one gig if you have a lot of RAM.

Make sure you format each drive accordingly. The / and /home partitions should be ext3 or reiser. the swap should be swap.

That's a pretty basic partitioning scheme. If that's not the problem, please give the actual error you are running into and we will try take it from there.
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Old 10-19-2007, 11:21 AM   #3
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Default Re: Linux partitioning help

i got the partition thing to work but now when its copying the files it says there is an Input/Output error
'this particular error is often due to a faulty cd/dvd disk or drive...etc"

what should i do!?!?
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Old 10-19-2007, 12:46 PM   #4
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Angry Re: Linux partitioning help

ok new problem, i got it to install properly (i think)

but now when i try to boot from the drive in which i installed linux it just automatically boots from winxp

also im not sure if it matters or not but when i go to my computer in winxp the F drive doesnt show up at all anymore.

im really confused


any help would be appreciated!! thanks!
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Old 10-22-2007, 12:07 AM   #5
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Default Re: Linux partitioning help

Linux file systems are hidden to windows. So, it is a good sign that the drive is not showing up. As for the boot problem, I will need a litle more information.

I'll guess you installed the OS on the secondary drive.
Is GRUB showing up on boot?

If not, then boot from the cd again, open a terminal and run the following commands
(if you used Ubuntu, if not ignore the sudo and just use a root terminal)

sudo mkdir /media/disk
sudo mount /dev/hdb1 /media/disk
sudo chroot /media/disk
sudo grub-install /dev/hd0
(hdb1 should be where your OS is installed, though it might also be sdb1... you should know or be able to figure out what it is)

If GRUB is there
Can you select the OS on GRUB?
If so, is it still booting to Windows?

I'll await your response.
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Old 10-22-2007, 09:25 AM   #6
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Default Re: Linux partitioning help

you don't explicitly have to create all the partitions that it lets you create.

SWAP (filetype swap)
/BOOT (ext3)
and / (ext3)

are all that are actually needed,

then /var
/home
/etc
and all the other mountpoints are just created as directories on the / partition.

I'll agree sometimes it's useful, but it can be a pain if you've chopped up the disk into sections too small and start having to use symbolic links to put things in the right place whilst keeping the files on a datastore elsewhere...
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