View Full Version : [ubuntu] Partitioning HD

March 10th, 2011, 03:08 AM
Hi all

I new to Ubuntu (and linux for that mater) and need some advice on partitioning. I am building a small ruggedized computer for my boat, it will be used as a navigation system and HTPC. I am using Ubuntu 10.10. AMD64 edition.

System specs:
Case – Homemade aluminum
Motherboard/CPU - Gigabyte E350-USB3 (AMD Fusion),
Ram – Corsair 4 GB DDR3,
HD – 2.5 WD Scorpio Black 500 Gb,
TV Tuner – Hauppauge Win-TV 1250,
WIFI – Engenius EOC 2611 + 8 Db antenna
Power Supply – Mini-box 250W M4-ATX (6 to 30V input), and
Monitor – Shark 10” touch screen + another 20-22? inch for inside.

I am used to partitioning in windows XP using Partitionmagic and my home system (300 GB+150 GB) is set like this:

C: removable
D: O/S and programs – 30GB
E: Docs – 20GB
F: Games/other software – 40GB
G: Music – 60GB
H: Photos/Video – 150GB
K: back up – 150GB

I have been reading up on Ubuntu but have some questions about partitioning. I have been using the guide here https://help.ubuntu.com/10.10/installation-guide/amd64/directory-tree.html (https://help.ubuntu.com/10.10/installation-guide/amd64/directory-tree.html). but need more help with definitions and with to group together and which should have their on partition.

What I have got so far is:
/boot - 500 MB
/usr – 6 GB or should this be larger, I tend to collect a lot of software?
/var – 4 GB (??)
/tmp – 500 MB
Swap – 8 GB
/home – Whatever is left

I think I am missing / but not sure.

Does this sound right or am I right out to lunch here? I sort of wanted to divide the O/S from the other software and the static stuff (i.e. music, video, charts, etc).

Also have 16GB USB for critical back up.



March 10th, 2011, 08:32 AM
What I have got so far is:
/boot - 500 MB
/usr 6 GB or should this be larger, I tend to collect a lot of software?
/var 4 GB (??)
/tmp 500 MB
Swap 8 GB
/home Whatever is left

I think I am missing / but not sure.

Not really sure why you want to make so many separate partitions, but since you do, I'd advise the following corrections:
/usr - 25-30GB.
Swap - no more then 4GB, and that only to be able to suspend to disk.
/ is necessary, about 1GB should suffice.

March 10th, 2011, 10:53 AM
Welcome to UF Vega1184. Nice to see someone is doing some homework before installing an OS, but I tend to agree with mikewhatever, you may be over doing it just a little. :) Unless you have a specific reason to.

This is all debatable, but a good set up to start with is 3 partitions.

1. for "/" (root) This is your sysytem or Ubuntu itself.
2. for /home, this is similar to "documents & settings" in windows.
3. for Swap, equal to your physical RAM & works like a pagefile.

If you want to separate everything into partitions instead of folders, then that's totally up to you. If you create a partition for /home, there is not even really a reason to have a separate partition for "back-ups" as /home will serve the same purpose, because "/" or (root) is in it's own partition, even if you re-install, you won't lose your data.

Imho a good partitioning scheme for your set up would be...

20-30 GB for "/" (root)
4GB for Swap
the remainder for /home


March 11th, 2011, 02:22 AM
Well thanks guys

But my thinking was since this a ruggedized computer and it will get knocked about the more partitions the better and I will have complete copies of priority software on the USB Drive.

The partitions I finally went with are:

/boot - 500 MB
/ - 10 GB
Swap – 4 GB
/usr – 20 GB
/var – 4 GB
/tmp – 4 GB
/home – Whatever was left

It may not be the most logical, but it's up and running.:) Install when pretty smoothly, just trying to sort out touch screen.


A couple of shots(Bad resize) of system.

March 11th, 2011, 02:35 AM
Better resize.

March 11th, 2011, 03:11 AM
Better resize.

Nah, I think the sizes you settled on are fine...lol j/k.
(and I'm not familiar with sizing those partitions btw)

Thanks for that, I can see them now & I'm definitely learning something as well. So keep us up to date on this thing.
Where are your vents? It's gonna need a lot of air circulation out in the hot sun, unless you're putting a water cooler or something on there.

March 11th, 2011, 03:12 AM
Why do you want to break it into separate partitions? For most people a single partition is plenty. You certainly don't need one for /boot, /usr, /var, and /tmp. Some people like to have a separate /home, but even that has no benefit if you aren't dual booting other Linux distros.