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Thread: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Unhappy Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    Well hello everyone i hope you can help me with my problem:

    Yesterday i installed Ubuntu via Wubi over Windows, i mean using a virtual partition, but it had a couple of very annoying bugs so i decided to create an actual partition for the dual boot.
    I Downloaded Ubuntu from Ubuntu.com and burnt the ISO, I assumed the installation "wizard" would give me the option create a partition. [I should mention that my PC wouldn't boot with the CD, so i had to choose the option "Help me Boot from CD"]
    I got to the step on the installation where i had to allocate the drive space, the option to install alongside Windows was there, I chose "something else" instead and it opened the partition manager, it showed my partitions [C: drive, and the occult recovery partitions].
    I didn't feel comfortable with the partition manager so i exited the installation and booted Windows 7 [64bit] to create a partition, my disk was fragmented so i had to defragment it to create a partition of the size that i wanted [27GB]
    After the process of defragmentation was done, i created the partition using the Windows Disk Manager, and formated it as NTFS.
    Until then everything was OK, i Booted Ubuntu from the CD, clicked on "Install Ubuntu 11.04" on the UI, and when i got to the step where i had to allocate drive space, the option to install it alongside Windows
    [I dont really remember what the option was exactly ] was missing and there was a message saying "This computer has no detected operative systems, What would you like to do?".

    so i clicked "Something Else" and my partitions didn't show, it just shows my HDD.


    So i gave up on the installation and went back to Windows 7 to install it via Wubi, on a virtual partition, so then i could migrate it to an actual partition, when the process was done i booted Ubuntu and the installation process gave me the error "No root filesystem defined".

    Sorry if i overdid the post, but im extremely frustrated and this is the only thing i can do.
    PD: I'm running on a Toshiba laptop
    Last edited by Daniel090; September 1st, 2011 at 12:18 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    Welcome to UF
    Firstly can you inform as to how many primary partitions you now have on the system?
    If unsure you can post a screenshot of your Windows Disk Management screen.
    MacBook Pro 10,1 retina

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Chicago Suburbs
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    From liveCD post this using terminal, so we can see how man partitions you have:

    Code:
    sudo fdisk -lu
    Many Windows 7 computers use all 4 primary partitions that is allowed under MBR(msdos) formating. Windows uses 2, a hidden system boot/recovery & the main install. The vendor does a recovery partition which is an image of you hard drive to restore your computer to the way it was when purchased, erasing everything since. And often just another Utility partition to use all 4 and prevent you from easily installing anything else. Microsoft likes it and the Vendor likes it as users do not call about installs of stuff they cannot script for a help desk.

    You need a repairCD or USB flash drive for every operating system you have installed (and maybe a couple of other repairCDs).
    Make your own Windows recoveryCD/repair:
    http://forums.techarena.in/guides-tutorials/1114725.htm

    Windows 7 repair USB
    http://www.intowindows.com/how-to-re...tion-dvd-disc/
    http://www.webupd8.org/2010/10/creat...usb-drive.html


    If you have made a lot of changes you may not want to restore Win7 with the recovery disks unless eventually you sell it. But you should make the set of recovery DVDs as that is the only way to totally restore it.
    The vendor recovery DVDs are just an image of your drive as purchased. If you have housecleaned a lot of cruft normally included, run many updates with many reboots, and added software you may want a full back up.
    Backup windows before install - post by Mark Phelps
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1626990
    http://www.macrium.com/reflectfree.asp
    Another suggestion by srs5694
    http://www.runtime.org/driveimage-xml.htm
    Oldfred on vacation. Back Sept 9. Will not have much if any Internet access.
    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.







  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    The command "sudo fdisk -lu"
    gave me this
    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 / 512 bytes
    I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
    Disk identifier: 0x9a502fc8

    Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
    /dev/sda1 * 2048 3074047 1536000 27 Unknown
    Partition 1 does not end on cylinder boundary.
    /dev/sda2 3074048 869947540 433436746+ 7 HPFS/NTFS
    /dev/sda3 932866048 976784129 21959041 17 Hidden HPFS/NTFS

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    That says you can create a sda4 as an extended partition and install many logical partitions for Ubuntu. If creating the partitions manually you have to shrink win7 and that is best done with win7's MMC. Then use gparted in Ubuntu liveCD to create partitions.

    It seems a little strange that your boot flag is on sda1, and is unknown?? Boot flag is usually on a 100MB boot/recovery NTFS partition or the main NTFS Windows partition depending on where the boot files are. Windows can only boot the partition with the boot flag, grub does not use a boot flag.

    Post this to see your entire configuration.

    Boot Info Script courtesy of forum members meierfra & Gert Hulselmans
    Page with instructions and download:
    http://bootinfoscript.sourceforge.net/
    Paste contents of results.txt in a New Reply, then highlight entire file and click on # in edit panel(code tags) to make it easier to read.
    Or You can generate the tags first by pressing the # icon in the New Reply Edit toolbar and then paste the contents between the generated [ code] paste here [ /code] tags.
    V60 has improved formating and requires code tags to make it legible. New Version is a zip file that you have to extract to get .sh to run.
    Oldfred on vacation. Back Sept 9. Will not have much if any Internet access.
    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.







  6. #6
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    Code:
     Boot Info Script 0.60    from 17 May 2011
    
    
    ============================= Boot Info Summary: ===============================
    
     => Windows is installed in the MBR of /dev/sda.
    
    sda1: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       ntfs
        Boot sector type:  Windows Vista/7
        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
        Boot sector info:   No errors found in the Boot Parameter Block.
        Operating System:  Windows 7
        Boot files:        /bootmgr /Boot/BCD /Windows/System32/winload.exe 
                           /wubildr /ubuntu/winboot/wubildr /wubildr.mbr 
                           /ubuntu/winboot/wubildr.mbr
    
    sda3: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       Extended Partition
        Boot sector type:  -
        Boot sector info:  
    
    sda5: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       ntfs
        Boot sector type:  Windows Vista/7
        Boot sector info:   According to the info in the boot sector, sda5 starts 
                           at sector 2048.
        Operating System:  
        Boot files:        
    
    sda4: __________________________________________________________________________
    
        File system:       ntfs
        Boot sector type:  Windows Vista/7
        Boot sector info:   According to the info in the boot sector, sda4 has 
                           43905023 sectors, but according to the info from 
                           fdisk, it has 43918081 sectors.
        Operating System:  
        Boot files:        /BOOTMGR /BOOT/BCD
    
    ============================ 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 / 512 bytes
    
    Partition  Boot  Start Sector    End Sector  # of Sectors  Id System
    
    /dev/sda1    *          2,048     3,074,047     3,072,000  27 Hidden NTFS (Recovery Environment)
    /dev/sda2           3,074,048   869,947,540   866,873,493   7 NTFS / exFAT / HPFS
    /dev/sda3         869,949,440   932,866,047    62,916,608   f W95 Extended (LBA)
    /dev/sda5         869,951,488   932,866,047    62,914,560   7 NTFS / exFAT / HPFS
    /dev/sda4         932,866,048   976,784,129    43,918,082  17 Hidden NTFS / HPFS
    
    /dev/sda4 ends after the last sector of /dev/sda
    
    "blkid" output: ________________________________________________________________
    
    Device           UUID                                   TYPE       LABEL
    
    /dev/loop0                                              squashfs   
    /dev/sda1        E202520F0251E8D5                       ntfs       TOSHIBA System Volume
    /dev/sda2        92F253A5F2538BFB                       ntfs       Local Disc
    /dev/sda4        1A6655F16655CE5F                       ntfs       HDDRECOVERY
    /dev/sda5        48C09827C0981D6E                       ntfs       Local Disc
    
    ================================ Mount points: =================================
    
    Device           Mount_Point              Type       Options
    
    /dev/loop0       /rofs                    squashfs   (ro,noatime)
    /dev/sr0         /cdrom                   iso9660    (ro,noatime)

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel090 View Post
    After the process of defragmentation was done, i created the partition using the Windows Disk Manager, and formated it as NTFS.
    Ubuntu cannot be installed to an NTFS file system, it needs to be a linux file system such as ext4. Try deleting the partition to leave empty space on the disk. The Ubuntu installer should show that unallocated space in its partitioner and you can tell it to make root and swap partitions there.
    ASRock P67 Extreme6, Intel i5 2500K, 8GB RAM, nVidia 6600GT, 4x1TB RAID1+0

  8. #8
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    Quote Originally Posted by YesWeCan View Post
    Ubuntu cannot be installed to an NTFS file system, it needs to be a linux file system such as ext4. Try deleting the partition to leave empty space on the disk. The Ubuntu installer should show that unallocated space in its partitioner and you can tell it to make root and swap partitions there.
    I already tried that and it didn't work

  9. #9
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    I just noticed this:
    Code:
    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 / 512 bytes
    
    Partition  Boot  Start Sector    End Sector  # of Sectors  Id System
    
    /dev/sda1    *          2,048     3,074,047     3,072,000  27 Hidden NTFS (Recovery Environment)
    /dev/sda2           3,074,048   869,947,540   866,873,493   7 NTFS / exFAT / HPFS
    /dev/sda3         869,949,440   932,866,047    62,916,608   f W95 Extended (LBA)
    /dev/sda5         869,951,488   932,866,047    62,914,560   7 NTFS / exFAT / HPFS
    /dev/sda4         932,866,048   976,784,129    43,918,082  17 Hidden NTFS / HPFS
    
    /dev/sda4 ends after the last sector of /dev/sda
    That'll probably be it. The partition table is corrupt.
    What's in sda4 - it might have to be "rearranged"
    ASRock P67 Extreme6, Intel i5 2500K, 8GB RAM, nVidia 6600GT, 4x1TB RAID1+0

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Re: Ubuntu installer doesn't detect my windows installation/HDD partitions

    YesWeCan's analysis is correct; whatever you used for partitioning created (or changed) /dev/sda4 in such a way that it's too big for the disk. The Linux libparted library, upon which the Ubuntu installer's partitioning tool is based, flakes out and reports as empty any disk that has even a tiny partition table problems (and sometimes non-problems, too), which is why this defect is causing the partition table to show up as empty.

    If you created /dev/sda4 for Linux's use, or if it's otherwise empty, the best option is to delete it. You can do this with whatever you used to create it or with fdisk:


    1. Type "sudo fdisk /dev/sda" to launch fdisk into interactive mode.
    2. Type "d" to delete a partition. You'll be asked for a partition number. Type "4".
    3. Type "p" to view the partition table and verify that you're working on the correct disk and have deleted the correct partition (as determined by its start and end points). If something seems wrong, type "q" to quit without saving your changes.
    4. If everything seems fine, type "w" to save your changes.



    Once that partition is deleted, the Ubuntu installer should be able to handle the disk correctly. You can use it to create partitions, as described in various installation documents on the Web. (I don't happen to have any bookmarked, though.)

    If /dev/sda4 contains valuable data, then it becomes trickier. You'll have to either resize it with a utility that can cope with its illegal size (I have no recommendations on that score) or back up its data, delete it, create a new partition in its place, and restore its data. Since it has a type of 0x17 ("Hidden NTFS / HPFS"), you'll have to unhide it before you can back it up from Windows.

    One caution: Do not use Windows to create partitions for Linux! Recent versions of the Windows partitioning tools have a tendency to convert a disk to use Windows' "dynamic disks" feature, which is a Microsoft-only type of partitioning scheme. They typically do this if you try to create more than four partitions on a disk. If you use dynamic disks, it becomes much harder (perhaps even impossible) to install Linux on the disk. There are some tools, such as EASEUS, that claim to be able to undo the conversion to dynamic disk format, but I've never tested them, so I don't know how well they work. Your disk has not been converted to dynamic disk format, so you got lucky on that score. I mention this mainly to warn you off of a second attempt that might result in such a conversion, but also to warn off anybody else who might read this in the future.
    If I've suggested a solution to a problem and you're not the original poster, do not try my solution! Problems can seem similar but be different, and a good solution to one problem can make another worse. Post a new thread with your problem details.

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