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Thread: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

  1. #1
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    4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    I bought HP Pavilion Dm1, which comes with 4 partitions.

    1 System
    2 no label -> where the os is and the data goes...
    3 Recovery
    4 HP_tools

    I've created recovery USB drive. And at first i wanted to remove the HP_tools partition but then i see that HP Quickweb is there along with a few tools.

    The notebook came with windows 7 starter (32bit os) and 2GB RAM (can go up to 8GB). i would like to install 64bit linux and increase the ram (as i plan to use the full potential of the CPU). i would also like to keep win7 starter since i payed for it and since it might be usefull for certain tasks.

    The problem is the preformated 4 primary partitions.

    I've read quite a few of the threads with this topic on this and some other forums. and also how to do it. but none give any definite answer...

    So what happens if i change HP_tools into secondary (logical?!) partition ? will the tools still work? will the HPquickweb still work/boot? or is it better to remove the recovery partition?

    HP quickweb is somekind of linux basedOS, which is kind of funny. HP might as well create a 10GB partition on a 500GB disk and install a propper linux there. it would still boot extremely fast... or rather much faster than windows 7.


    Anyway quickweb can be booted using grub 2.2: http://phoronix.com/forums/showthrea...%29-with-Grub2


    it seems (appears the computer is using BIOS to boot). i did a boot info script:
    Code:
                                
                      Boot Info Script 0.61      [1 April 2012]
    
    
    ============================= Boot Info Summary: ===============================
    
     => Windows is installed in the MBR of /dev/sda.
     => Syslinux MBR (4.04 and higher) is installed in the MBR of /dev/sdb.
    
    sda1: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       ntfs
        Boot sector type:  Windows Vista/7: NTFS
        Boot sector info:  No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
        Operating System:  
        Boot files:        /bootmgr /Boot/BCD
    
    sda2: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       ntfs
        Boot sector type:  Windows Vista/7: NTFS
        Boot sector info:  No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
        Operating System:  Windows 7
        Boot files:        /bootmgr /boot/BCD /Windows/System32/winload.exe
    
    sda3: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       ntfs
        Boot sector type:  Windows Vista/7: NTFS
        Boot sector info:  No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
        Operating System:  
        Boot files:        /bootmgr /boot/bcd
    
    sda4: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       vfat
        Boot sector type:  Windows 7: FAT32
        Boot sector info:  No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
        Operating System:  
        Boot files:        
    
    sdb1: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       vfat
        Boot sector type:  SYSLINUX 4.04 2011-04-18
        Boot sector info:  Syslinux looks at sector 1449344 of /dev/sdb1 for its 
                           second stage. SYSLINUX is installed in the J:\syslinux 
                           directory. The integrity check of the ADV area failed. 
                           No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
        Operating System:  
        Boot files:        /boot/grub/grub.cfg /syslinux/syslinux.cfg 
                           /efi/boot/bootx64.efi /ldlinux.sys
    
    ============================ Drive/Partition Info: =============================
    
    Drive: sda _____________________________________________________________________
    
    Disk /dev/sda: 500.1 GB, 500107862016 bytes
    255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 60801 cylinders, total 976773168 sectors
    Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
    Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 4096 bytes
    
    Partition  Boot  Start Sector    End Sector  # of Sectors  Id System
    
    /dev/sda1    *          2,048       409,599       407,552   7 NTFS / exFAT / HPFS
    /dev/sda2             409,600   938,872,831   938,463,232   7 NTFS / exFAT / HPFS
    /dev/sda3         938,872,832   968,450,047    29,577,216   7 NTFS / exFAT / HPFS
    /dev/sda4         968,450,048   976,771,119     8,321,072   c W95 FAT32 (LBA)
    
    
    Drive: sdb _____________________________________________________________________
    
    Disk /dev/sdb: 4007 MB, 4007657472 bytes
    5 heads, 32 sectors/track, 48921 cylinders, total 7827456 sectors
    Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
    Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
    
    Partition  Boot  Start Sector    End Sector  # of Sectors  Id System
    
    /dev/sdb1    *          8,064     7,827,455     7,819,392   c W95 FAT32 (LBA)
    
    
    "blkid" output: ________________________________________________________________
    
    Device           UUID                                   TYPE       LABEL
    
    /dev/loop0                                              squashfs   
    /dev/sda1        02CA6F18CA6F06EF                       ntfs       SYSTEM
    /dev/sda2        D492A1C692A1AE04                       ntfs       
    /dev/sda3        70705369705334D6                       ntfs       Recovery
    /dev/sda4        1A7D-CD7B                              vfat       HP_TOOLS
    /dev/sdb1        2205-1EA6                              vfat       TOSHIBA
    
    ================================ Mount points: =================================
    
    Device           Mount_Point              Type       Options
    
    /dev/loop0       /rofs                    squashfs   (ro,noatime)
    /dev/sdb1        /cdrom                   vfat       (ro,noatime,fmask=0022,dmask=0022,codepage=cp437,iocharset=iso8859-1,shortname=mixed,errors=remount-ro)
    
    
    =========================== sdb1/boot/grub/grub.cfg: ===========================
    
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
    if loadfont /boot/grub/font.pf2 ; then
        set gfxmode=auto
        insmod efi_gop
        insmod efi_uga
        insmod gfxterm
        terminal_output gfxterm
    fi
    
    set menu_color_normal=white/black
    set menu_color_highlight=black/light-gray
    
    menuentry "Start Kubuntu" {
        set gfxpayload=keep
        linux    /casper/vmlinuz  file=/cdrom/preseed/kubuntu.seed boot=casper maybe-ubiquity quiet splash --
        initrd    /casper/initrd.lz
    }
    menuentry "Check disc for defects" {
        set gfxpayload=keep
        linux    /casper/vmlinuz  boot=casper integrity-check quiet splash --
        initrd    /casper/initrd.lz
    }
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
    ========================= sdb1/syslinux/syslinux.cfg: ==========================
    
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    # D-I config version 2.0
    include menu.cfg
    default vesamenu.c32
    prompt 0
    timeout 300
    ui gfxboot bootlogo
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
    =================== sdb1: Location of files loaded by Grub: ====================
    
               GiB - GB             File                                 Fragment(s)
    
                ?? = ??             boot/grub/grub.cfg                             1
    
    ================= sdb1: Location of files loaded by Syslinux: ==================
    
               GiB - GB             File                                 Fragment(s)
    
                ?? = ??             ldlinux.sys                                    1
                ?? = ??             syslinux/chain.c32                             1
                ?? = ??             syslinux/gfxboot.c32                           1
                ?? = ??             syslinux/syslinux.cfg                          1
                ?? = ??             syslinux/vesamenu.c32                          1
    
    ============== sdb1: Version of COM32(R) files used by Syslinux: ===============
    
     syslinux/chain.c32                 :  COM32R module (v4.xx)
     syslinux/gfxboot.c32               :  COM32R module (v4.xx)
     syslinux/vesamenu.c32              :  COM32R module (v4.xx)
    
    =============================== StdErr Messages: ===============================
    
    /home/kubuntu/Documents/bootinfoscript-061/bootinfoscript: line 1646: [: 2.73495e+09: integer expression expected
    i followed this guide on live boot to check if the boot is using BIOS:
    http://askubuntu.com/questions/16256...i-uefi-or-bios


    and it said BIOS so i guess bios it is.


    so i would like to know what are other people's experiences regarding this partitioning?
    Last edited by mastablasta; August 18th, 2013 at 06:54 AM.
    Easy to understand Ubuntu manual with lots of pics: http://ubuntu-manual.org/
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  2. #2
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    I would create the set of recovery DVDs and delete the recovery partition. Or simply use the windows Backup tool and create an image of it as it is right now, you can restore the system from that and it's much better than the built in recovery partition.

    The best and maybe only choice is to delete the recovery partition from another point: You will probably shrink sda2 to make space for ubuntu. So, even if you delete or convert to logical the HP_TOOLS (sda4) partition, you still will not be able to use the unallocated space created by shrinking sda2 because sda3 will be between them.

    You have to think about that too, which partition will you shrink and where the unallocated space will be positioned.
    Darko.
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  3. #3
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    Since you already have four partitions, that is the maximum allowed. Simply removing HP_TOOLS is not the solution -- as it is too small to be of any use.

    So first, copy all the files and folders inside the HP_TOOLS partition into your Win7 OS partition.

    Second, open up the Win 7 Disk Management tool. NOW, you can remove the HP_TOOLS partition.

    Third, shrink the Win7 OS partition to make room on the drive. Win7 is very finicky about its OS partition being messed with from "outside" with other tools -- like GParted. While it may be OK, it's more likely to result in filesystem corruption, which will then render Win7 unbootable.

    Fourth, you will need a way, in the future, to restore Win7 to its present state -- and you can do that without using the Recovery partition. Download and install the free version of Macrium Reflect. Hook up an external drive, and use MR to image off the Win7 OS and its boot partition to that drive. Then, use the MR option to create and burn a Linux Boot CD.

    Now, using that CD, you have the ability to restore your current Win7 setup from that backup.

    Fifth, you can now go back into the Win7 Disk Management tool and remove the Recovery partition. Do not format the free space, leave it as is.

    Finally, BEFORE you install Ubuntu, use the Win7 Backup feature to create and burn a Win7 Repair CD. You might need this later if the dual-boot install corrupts the Win7 boot loader.

    When you then install Ubuntu, use the "Something Else" option to allow Manual Partitioning.
    Ubuntu 14.04, Mint 17; MS Win 8.1.
    Will not respond to PM requests for support -- use the forums.

  4. #4
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    there is a tool that can change primary into secondary (logical) partition. which is what i was thinking to do with hp_tools.

    so the partition that i will install ubuntu to has to be the last one on the disk or can be the space created by shrinking the 2nd partition?

    The notebook doesn't have any DVD/CD drive. It's one of the ultraportable ones (well the cheap option). so i used 16GB USB drive to create restore disk using the tools provided by manufacturer. however there is no way of knowing if it will work on restore (well, besides doing the restore).

    So far i did:
    1 use a USB to create restore disk from restore partition (hopefully it works)

    2. creating another image of the OS might be a good idea, though i would need an external drive or a new USB key for that. i still can't connect to XP mashcine. i can connect to linux. would it be OK to put the disk image on ext4 linux drive perhaps?

    3. hp_tools has diagnostic tools as well as HP quickweb - quick web access (ironocally via their linux) that is available by pressing a special buton on the mashcine. they have a special programme to back up that partition, however some reported that theirs worked after they changed it to a logical drive (secondary?) and the quickweb even if they stuck it on windows partition. but the point is for the diagnostic tools to work they need to be on separate fat32 partition named hp_tools.


    ---
    so another tip i picked up is that the data parittion (where the current OS is) can be turned into logical sicne OS boots of the (1st) system partition and then you can shrink it and create linux in the free space. anyone done that before?
    Easy to understand Ubuntu manual with lots of pics: http://ubuntu-manual.org/
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  5. #5
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    Converting sda4 into logical won't help. As I said, just look at the physical positions of the partitions. Draw it if it's easier for you.

    When you convert sda4 into logical it will still be at the end of the disk. When shrinking sda2 to create unallocated space, that space will be between sda2 and sda3, or sda2 and sda1 depending which end you shrink.

    In any case it has no touch points with sda4 (because sda3 is in the way) so you can't create more logical partitions from the unallocated space since all logical partitions need to be grouped together.
    Darko.
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    Ubuntu 12.04 LTS 64bit & Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit

  6. #6
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    You would have to convert both the recovery & hptools to logical with fixparts and then include the space you make by using the Windows MMC to shrink the main Windows install.

    While Windows only needs a primary to boot, we have seen where that boot partition gets corrupted and just copying/repairing main install then lets it boot. If logical that would not work, so I would leave main install as primary.

    Good advice on how to handle all four primary partitions used. - srs5694
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1686440
    Be sure to create recovery DVD(s) first. And a Windows repair CD.
    HP tools partition discussion - similar for other vendor partitions:
    http://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Noteboo...on/td-p/228360
    For a complete blow-by-blow on dealing with HP's four partitions, see Full Circle Magazine, issue 41, page 36.
    http://fullcirclemagazine.org/
    Shrinking a Windows 7 partition is best done in Windows. But do not create new partitions with Windows.
    http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windo...windows-vista/
    For info on UEFI boot install & repair:
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to close thread when/if answered completely.







  7. #7
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    You can change your c: drive into a logical using miniPatition Tool, it works since that system partition has your boot files on it. That's how I did it on my netbook.
    "You can't expect to hold supreme executive power just because some watery tart lobbed a sword at you"

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  8. #8
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    Quote Originally Posted by darkod View Post
    Converting sda4 into logical won't help. As I said, just look at the physical positions of the partitions. Draw it if it's easier for you.

    When you convert sda4 into logical it will still be at the end of the disk. When shrinking sda2 to create unallocated space, that space will be between sda2 and sda3, or sda2 and sda1 depending which end you shrink.

    In any case it has no touch points with sda4 (because sda3 is in the way) so you can't create more logical partitions from the unallocated space since all logical partitions need to be grouped together.
    ah i thought that i could then create new primary out of newly carved space form data parittion on which i could install linux.

    Oldfred thanks for som additional links i already read a few of those before but some of them are new. will look into them. though it should be noted that what is on HP_tools partition changes. just like they reduced the "bloatware" and if i look at it maybe only one app is not really needed, while the rest of them are actually usefull and easy to use.

    i've made recovery disk USB image but not repair disk. as i do not have any CD/DVD drive on this maschine. if oyu ask me the could have given the user a usb along with a computer that would retore it to original state. i mean they sell empty 32GB USB drives for 13 or 14EUR. i would gladly pay for them just to be sleeping at peace.

    Quote Originally Posted by jerome1232 View Post
    You can change your c: drive into a logical using miniPatition Tool, it works since that system partition has your boot files on it. That's how I did it on my netbook.
    so after creating C as logical what did you do next? carve space from it and partition it for linux? are there any other consequences of doing that? like not being able to restore/reinstall the OS to original state.
    -----

    Ok so why i even got lhis one... i mean the yhad so many models there and all of them were with no OS preinstalled which is great since here they always come with OS. but then after a lot of reading and investigating i ofund that only 2 fit my criteria. Lenovo and this HP. but lenovo had weaker battery and no bloetooth for same price. so i took HP which came with win7... too bad others didn't fit... either their GPU was bad, or battery weak, or they were overheating or not linux compatible... if they had a better battery i would probably go with lenovo since the build of that one was better.
    Easy to understand Ubuntu manual with lots of pics: http://ubuntu-manual.org/
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  9. #9
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    Quote Originally Posted by mastablasta View Post
    so after creating C as logical what did you do next? carve space from it and partition it for linux? are there any other consequences of doing that? like not being able to restore/reinstall the OS to original state.

    Yes, I shrunk the Windows drive and installed Ubuntu into the free space created in the logical partition. I haven't experienced any negative consequences. As for restoring etc... I haven't given the built in restore tools a try. I haven't had the need to try them. Perhaps when school lets out I can give it all a try, right now I can't have my netbook going down.
    "You can't expect to hold supreme executive power just because some watery tart lobbed a sword at you"

    "Don't let your mind wander -- it's too little to be let out alone."

  10. #10
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    Re: 4 primary partitions - which is best to be removed/changed into secondary?

    My daughter had a dv6t with the identical issue. I detailed the steps I took to repartition the drive in this post. Warning: It ain't pretty.
    If you ask for help, please have the courtesy to check for responses and thank the people who helped you.

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