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Thread: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

  1. #1
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    Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    So my system is set up like this:

    /dev/sda1/ Windows XP Partition
    /dev/sda2/ FAT32 Compaq Recovery Partition
    /dev/sda3/ Container for Logical Partitions sda5 and sda6
    /dev/sda4/ (can't find this one in Disk Utility)
    /dev/sda5/ Linux file system running Lubuntu 12.04
    /dev/sda6/ Linux swap space

    Is there a way to just delete sda5 and sda6, boot with a Ubuntu 12.04 USB key and do a completely clean install of it to sda3? I'd like to check before I start deleting things.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    Can you post the output of df -h?
    Code:
    wim@wim-desktop:~$ df -h
    Filesystem            Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
    /dev/sda1              24G  2.6G   21G  12% /
    none                  1.9G  284K  1.9G   1% /dev
    none                  1.9G  200K  1.9G   1% /dev/shm
    none                  1.9G   92K  1.9G   1% /var/run
    none                  1.9G     0  1.9G   0% /var/lock
    none                  1.9G     0  1.9G   0% /lib/init/rw
    /dev/sda5             119G  111G  2.5G  98% /home
    And of sudo fdisk -l (that's lowercase L at the end)
    Code:
    wim@wim-desktop:~$ sudo fdisk -l
    [sudo] password for wim: 
    
    Disk /dev/sda: 160.0 GB, 160000000000 bytes
    255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 19452 cylinders
    Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
    Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
    I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
    Disk identifier: 0x000a0bfe
    
       Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
    /dev/sda1   *           1        3162    25390080   83  Linux
    /dev/sda2            3162        3680     4160512   82  Linux swap / Solaris
    /dev/sda3            3680       19453   126696449    5  Extended
    /dev/sda5            3680       19453   126696448   83  Linux
    Is there a way to just delete sda5 and sda6, boot with a Ubuntu 12.04 USB key and do a completely clean install of it to sda3?
    As you can't install in an extended partition (sda3), you need to delete sda4, sda5 and sda6 and sda3. And next allow Ubuntu to do its thing in the freespace. It would however not be my approach as you more than likely will be limited to 4 primary partitions and therefore either no swap or no partition wor the home directories. Rather have the extended partition and install ubuntu in logical partitions (more or less as it's now).
    If you don't make backups of your important data, your data is obviously not important to you.

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    1. There is no need to delete sda4 what ever that is, only sda5, sda6 and sda3. That is, if you decide deleting at all.

    2. The auto install process of ubuntu installs in logical partitions, so it's not tru that if you have two exisitng primary partitions ubuntu will install with two more and reach the limit of primary partitions. It will install in logical partition leaving the posibility to have one more primary later.

    If you are happy with your partition sizes, you don't have to delete anything. Just use the manual method to install (Something Else). It will list existing partitions.

    Select sda5, click the Change button below. Change the Use As to ext4, tick the format box, select mount point /.
    Then select sda6 and in Use As put swap area. There is no mount point for swap and no format tick box.

    Below the partition list, for the destination of the bootloder use /dev/sda (without any number in it).

    That's it. That is how you install manually with more control of the process.

    If you are not happy with the current partition sizes then you do need to delete them and create new ones but that would also involve planning of the other partition if you want to use more space for ubuntu this time. You would need to shrink something else so that you have more unallocated space.
    Darko.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ubuntu 12.04 LTS 64bit & Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    Here is df -h

    Code:
    Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
    /dev/sda5        29G  8.5G   19G  32% /
    udev            965M  4.0K  965M   1% /dev
    tmpfs           389M  856K  388M   1% /run
    none            5.0M     0  5.0M   0% /run/lock
    none            972M  264K  972M   1% /run/shm
    Here is sudo fdisk -l

    Code:
    Disk /dev/sda: 80.0 GB, 80026361856 bytes
    255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 9729 cylinders, total 156301488 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: 0xed1f86f7
    
       Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
    /dev/sda1   *          63    80448622    40224280    7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
    /dev/sda2       144160768   156299263     6069248   12  Compaq diagnostics
    /dev/sda3        80449534   144160767    31855617    5  Extended
    /dev/sda5        80449536   140111871    29831168   83  Linux
    /dev/sda6       140113920   144160767     2023424   82  Linux swap / Solaris
    
    Partition table entries are not in disk order
    So my understanding is that I can do the following:

    1) In Lubuntu, run Disk Manager and delete sda5 and sda6.
    2) Reboot with a Ubuntu USB key and during the install, process, choose to put it on sda3.

    I don't have to do anything to fix the master boot record? Will it reinstall grub?

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    Read my previous post.
    Darko.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ubuntu 12.04 LTS 64bit & Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit

  6. #6
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    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Roger-H View Post
    So my understanding is that I can do the following:

    1) In Lubuntu, run Disk Manager and delete sda5 and sda6.
    2) Reboot with a Ubuntu USB key and during the install, process, choose to put it on sda3.
    If Lubuntu is your current OS, step 1 will not work as those partitions are in use (you can still get around the swap but not around root partition). So you need to use a liveCD to do so

    Go for darkod's advise, it will give you a clean install.
    If you don't make backups of your important data, your data is obviously not important to you.

  7. #7
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    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    Ah, okay, I don't think I followed what was being recommended but after rereading it I understand. I'll let you know how it goes.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    For a clean install of Ubuntu, and the retaining your Windows partitions, all you need to do is:

    1) Boot a live-cd
    2) when you get to the partitioning page, select the manual option.
    3) Select partition 4 and make the mount point "/" && set the bootable flag on.
    4) for /dev/sda5 , select it, then find in the mount point drop down something like, do no mount partition use for swap...

    That'll do you fine.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Re: Deleting and starting fresh without changing partitions?

    I used a USB key, but that worked. Thanks, everyone.

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