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Thread: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

  1. #1
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    First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    Hey guys,
    So I wanted to dual boot my laptop with Ubuntu. I created a 50GB partition for Windows 8 (which I've already got installed), a 350GB one for Data to be shared between the 2 OSs, and I left 40GB or so for ubuntu.
    I've tried creating the partition upon installation (using an image on my USB) but it says that those 40GB are unusable. What can I do?
    SS attached
    Thanks

    http://postimage.org/image/4hk7cfbyb/full/

  2. #2
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    Quote Originally Posted by matanc1 View Post
    I've tried creating the partition upon installation (using an image on my USB) but it says that those 40GB are unusable. What can I do?
    You need to delete the 40 GB NTFS partition (presumably this is the one that you intend to use for Ubuntu) and then use the unallocated space to install Ubuntu. There are various ways of doing this. It is fairly easy to use manual partitioning in the installation process to delete the existing partition, and create both a root partition and a swap area in the 40 GB of available space now to be used as an extended (ext4) partition. See:

    http://linuxnorth.wordpress.com/manual-partitioning/


    This blog posting has links to other related web sites, including video tutorials.

    p.s. Note that you are only allowed to have four active partitions - which is why some of your disk space shows up as unusable.
    Last edited by centaurusa; November 17th, 2012 at 03:25 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    p.s. Note that you are only allowed to have four active primary partitions - which is why some of your disk space shows up as unusable.
    you can have more than 4 partitions, but they will need to be logical ones, living inside one of primary partitions, eg
    -sda1 ntfs (win)
    -sda2 ntfs (win)
    -sda3 ntfs (win)
    -sda4 extended
    ---sda5 ntfs (win)
    ---sda6 swap (linux)
    ---sda7 ext4 (linux)
    ---sda8 ext4 (linux)

    if your data partition is empty, kill it, create a new extended partition spanning the whole free space and inside it create target partitions (data and whatever linux you want)
    Last edited by Vaphell; November 17th, 2012 at 04:02 PM.
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  4. #4
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaphell View Post
    you can have more than 4 partitions, but they will need to be logical ones, living inside one of primary partitions, eg
    -sda1 ntfs (win)
    -sda2 ntfs (win)
    -sda3 ntfs (win)
    -sda4 extended
    ---sda5 ntfs (win)
    ---sda6 swap (linux)
    ---sda7 ext4 (linux)
    ---sda8 ext4 (linux)

    if your data partition is empty, kill it, create a new extended partition spanning the whole free space and inside it create target partitions (data and whatever linux you want)
    Mind explaining this a bit more into depth?
    From what I'm understanding from you I can take the data partition (which is roughly 350gb or so) and the 50gb I set aside to create another partition, and I can partition that one into a data partition for Windows+Linux and another one for the ubuntu installation?

  5. #5
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    random screenshot of gparted from the internet

    as you can see here there are 6 partitions total, but to go around of the max 4 primary partitions limitation, 3 of them are created under extended partition (see that blue frame grouping 3 green frames?).
    This is the same situation you want to achieve because your total count of partitions will be 5 or 6. In your case extended partition would be made of DATA, linux ext4 and most likely linux swap. Obviously that 'envelope' should occupy as much space as possible (current DATA plus current free space)
    Last edited by Vaphell; November 17th, 2012 at 05:03 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    You've pretty much got it. There is this restriction, unless you are using the newer type of partition table (EFI or GPT or both. I'm still learning), that you can only have 4 primary partitions. Your screenshot shows four, which is likely to be the reason why the remaining space is coming up as unusable, as has already been posted.

    What you can do, also mentioned already, is to set up one of four the allowed primary partitions as an extended partition. Inside of that you can then create a large number of extended partitions. There is a limit. I forget how many, but it is something like 64, I think.

    Windows must be installed on a primary partition. Linux systems can happily be installed in an extended partition.

    I assume that there is little or no data in your current sda4, and that sda3 is the win8 install. If there is data on there, move it out. Also, you are going to be doing some more partitioning, so back up anything at all that is on the computer that you can't afford to lose. Partitioning is safe, but if it does go wrong, it is possible that absolutely everything is gone from the drive.

    So, having done any necessary backups, delete sda4, assuming this is really the partition you had intended as a storage partition. This will leave you with some 400GB of unallocated space at the end of the drive.

    Make all of this space into an extended partition.

    I like to put my /home on a seperate partition. Doing this means that if I have to re-install, all my config files, and any data I have in there, can simply be re-mounted at /home during the new install. I would do

    a partition for / of about 15GB. Up until recently, I though 10GB to be more than enough, but the other week I had to enlarge the / on a friends computer because the 8GB or so that it had had gotten full.

    a partition for /home. If your weren't going to have that shared data partition, I would say the rest of the space for that. Since you are going to be using a data partition, you can make it whatever you think useful. I read claims of people only leaving 1GB for their home. I think that is overdoing things. If you are consistent with storing your data to the data partition, however, 20GB or so should be more than ample.

    a swap partition that is a little larger than your RAM. The standby function will only work properly if this is the case. The function writes the contents of RAM onto the swap space, so there needs to be room for that. If you are sure you will never need standby, the 1GB or so should be enough for normal computing.

    the remainder as an ntfs partition for data sharing.

    If you boot into the live environment, the "try without changing" option on the CD or USB installer, you can do the partition work with gparted. If you want the separate /home, you need to choose the manual partitioning option during the install. That is the "something else" at the point where you can choose "install beside windows" or "use the whole drive".

    The only thing I don't know is if Win8 will automagically find the data partition once all this is done.
    Michael

  7. #7
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    Quote Originally Posted by audiomick View Post
    You've pretty much got it. There is this restriction, unless you are using the newer type of partition table (EFI or GPT or both. I'm still learning), that you can only have 4 primary partitions. Your screenshot shows four, which is likely to be the reason why the remaining space is coming up as unusable, as has already been posted.

    What you can do, also mentioned already, is to set up one of four the allowed primary partitions as an extended partition. Inside of that you can then create a large number of extended partitions. There is a limit. I forget how many, but it is something like 64, I think.

    Windows must be installed on a primary partition. Linux systems can happily be installed in an extended partition.

    I assume that there is little or no data in your current sda4, and that sda3 is the win8 install. If there is data on there, move it out. Also, you are going to be doing some more partitioning, so back up anything at all that is on the computer that you can't afford to lose. Partitioning is safe, but if it does go wrong, it is possible that absolutely everything is gone from the drive.

    So, having done any necessary backups, delete sda4, assuming this is really the partition you had intended as a storage partition. This will leave you with some 400GB of unallocated space at the end of the drive.

    Make all of this space into an extended partition.

    I like to put my /home on a seperate partition. Doing this means that if I have to re-install, all my config files, and any data I have in there, can simply be re-mounted at /home during the new install. I would do

    a partition for / of about 15GB. Up until recently, I though 10GB to be more than enough, but the other week I had to enlarge the / on a friends computer because the 8GB or so that it had had gotten full.

    a partition for /home. If your weren't going to have that shared data partition, I would say the rest of the space for that. Since you are going to be using a data partition, you can make it whatever you think useful. I read claims of people only leaving 1GB for their home. I think that is overdoing things. If you are consistent with storing your data to the data partition, however, 20GB or so should be more than ample.

    a swap partition that is a little larger than your RAM. The standby function will only work properly if this is the case. The function writes the contents of RAM onto the swap space, so there needs to be room for that. If you are sure you will never need standby, the 1GB or so should be enough for normal computing.

    the remainder as an ntfs partition for data sharing.

    If you boot into the live environment, the "try without changing" option on the CD or USB installer, you can do the partition work with gparted. If you want the separate /home, you need to choose the manual partitioning option during the install. That is the "something else" at the point where you can choose "install beside windows" or "use the whole drive".

    The only thing I don't know is if Win8 will automagically find the data partition once all this is done.
    Thanks for the help, so a few more questions:
    1. How do I make an extended partition? I'm currently on my win8 and I don't have the option in the disc management.
    2. What's the difference between logic and primary? should my saw partition be logic or primary? should I install ubuntu on a swap or primary partition?
    3. if I create the data partition inside the extended partition, will windows still be able to recognize it?

    Thanks for the help!

  8. #8
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    1. How do I make an extended partition? I'm currently on my win8 and I don't have the option in the disc management.
    leave the space free and make use of it during ubuntu install. Remove the 4th partition (data) so the total count of primary partitions < 4 which is necessary to have a wiggle room.

    2. What's the difference between logic and primary?
    primary = 'true' partition, up to 4
    extended = primary partition that acts as a wrapper for logical partitions
    logical = 'fake' partition that lives inside extended.
    3. if I create the data partition inside the extended partition, will windows still be able to recognize it?
    yes
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  9. #9
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    Quote Originally Posted by audiomick View Post
    So, having done any necessary backups, delete sda4, assuming this is really the partition you had intended as a storage partition. This will leave you with some 400GB of unallocated space at the end of the drive.

    Make all of this space into an extended partition.
    +1

    audiomick's post was detailed, so I wanted to highlight the most important part.

    You've already got 4 primary partitions right now so you're stuck. That's why the last 40GB is showing up as unusable.

    EDIT: I prefer to create/resize/delete partitions from a GParted LiveCD rather than the Ubuntu install disc. I think the task is more understandable from the GPLiveCD.
    Last edited by Bartender; November 17th, 2012 at 05:30 PM.

  10. #10
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    Re: First time dualbooting, can't create partition

    So I've deleted the D partition and it's now free space. I have no option to create an extended partition in the ubuntu installation options I posted above (After highlighting the free space and clicking +).
    What can I do?

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