View Full Version : unusable space in Ubuntu partition tool

October 11th, 2013, 01:16 AM
Hello, I am trying to install Linux Mint along side Windows 7 on my sister's computer. I know that it isn't Ubuntu, but I'm still putting it in this category because it's the Ubuntu partition tool, the same one that's in the Ubuntu installer. I created a partition for Linux in Windows 7, and when I get to the point for choosing a place to install it, there is no "Install alongside Windows 7" option, so I chose "something else". In there it shows my partition but it says it's unusable, nothing else. When I click it, the "+ -" "Change" and "New Partition Table" are grayed out. I need help making the partition usable so I can install it on there. I don't want to get rid of Windows so I don't want to do anything that would do that. This is what appears in the partition tool:

/dev/sda1 ntfs 208 MB size 69 MB used Windows 7 (loader)
/dev/sda2 ntfs 318140 MB size 90894 used Windows Recovery Environment (loader)
unusable (This is where I'm trying to install Mint) 161061 MB
/dev/sda3 ntfs 16435 MB size 14613 MB used Windows Recovery Environment (loader)
/dev/sda4 fat32 4260 MB size 3103 MB used

Thank you for your time. Again, I put it here instead of other distro support because it uses the same partition tool as Ubuntu.

October 11th, 2013, 01:22 AM
You have 2 partitons with: "Windows Recovery Environment" ??

You created a 5th partition and that's impossible because you can have only 4 partition. I mean Primaire Partitions.
You can create more partitions but 1 of the partitions must be a Extended partition. And IN the Extended partitions you can create Logical Partitions.

In the newer Laptops/PC Windows creates always already 4 Primaire partitions. So that make it a problem to partitioning

there is no "Install alongside Windows 7" option
That is normal because there are already 4 partitions, so Ubuntu can't give that option.

As I said, you have 2 Recovery partitions. Can you explain that?

It will not be easy, but it will go, but I have no experience with that so somebody else will help you.

October 11th, 2013, 01:38 AM
I didn't toy with the Windows partition at all, I have no idea why it created 2 recovery partitions. Is there a way to get rid of one without killing Windows? Thank you for your reply by the way.

October 11th, 2013, 01:46 AM
You're welcome.
Before we remove some things, I think the first recovery sda2 is your systempartition and the second is the recovery.
What you can do is boot from the Live-dvd/usb and open the partition manager gParted. (find it via the Dash) (UbuntuLogo on the Top in the left)
Make a screenshot from that window (do it with the screenshot maker, you find that via the dash too). (Load it up via a upload site like: http://imgur.com/ and post the BBCode here in a post.)

Edit: I have to go sleep now, tomorrow go to work.

October 11th, 2013, 02:25 AM
I did what you said but the laptop was having trouble with the wifi. Now I need the wifi drivers! *facepalm* Anyway, I'll try to upload it tomorrow or the next day.

October 11th, 2013, 04:45 AM
Often both the Windows boot/repair partition(100MB hidden) is called recovery and the vendor image of your hard drive is called recovery. Or two recovery partitions but different.

My laptop already has 4 primary partitions: how can I install Ubuntu?
Good advice on how to handle all four primary partitions used. - srs5694
Be sure to create recovery DVD(s) first. And a Windows repair CD.
HP tools partition discussion - similar for other vendor partitions:
For a complete blow-by-blow on dealing with HP's four partitions, see Full Circle Magazine, issue 41, page 36. - gordintoronto
This suggests removing system partition and making c: the bootable partition. But has details on all alternatives
Shrinking a Windows 7 partition is best done in Windows. But do not create new partitions with Windows.
The Hedge show graphically how to delete & create partitions: