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Thread: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

  1. #1
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    I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    I have decided to finally put a Linux distribution on my desktop (mostly thanks to a more optimistic look on gaming on Linux) but before investing in a second HDD, I wanted to get clearance from you knowledgeable folk at the Ubuntu forums first. My PC contains the following at the moment:

    CPU: Intel Core i5 2500K

    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z68AP-D3

    Memory: 8Gb (2x4Gb) Corsair Vengeance @ 1600Mhz

    Storage: 1TB Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM

    Graphics Card:
    Gainward GeForce GTX 570 Golden Sample

    Power Supply Unit: Antec TruePower New Modular 650W

    Case: Lian-Li PC-K63B First Knight

    Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit

    Monitor: Yamakasi CatLeap Q270 LED 2560X1440p

    The second HDD I intend to get is this one. I fully intend on keeping Windows 7 around for now especially as I don't find Windows 8 too appealing. Nevertheless, I don't want to play around with partitions and would rather just go all the way by giving Linux its very own HDD. It's a bigger HDD which goes in line with me hoping for Windows 7 to be my last Windows operating system, especially as Linux can do everything I want except sufficient gaming, but even that is changing.

    I know that an Intel CPU and a Nvidia GPU will do just fine in Linux. However, what would dual booting from two different HDDs be like? Will I face any issues as opposed to just partitioning the HDD? Is there anything I am missing?

  2. #2
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    just add the hdd to the system and make that the primary booting hdd in the bios
    then install ubuntu to the new hdd , be sure to but the MBR on the new HDD not the win7 one, that way you can remove the new hdd and have win 7 still boot

    you could unplug the win 7 hdd and re connect it after you install ubuntu, but you will need to run sudo update-grub after you add it to get dual boot

    i personally don't trust drive that are over 1tb is capacity
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  3. #3
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    Big +1 for having the Win7 drive disconnected when installing Ubuntu. This prevents the all-too-frequent problem of GRUB getting accidentally installed to the Windows drive and hosing up Windows boot in the process.

    It's a simple matter when done to reconnect the Win 7 drive, but continue to boot from the Ubuntu drive, open a terminal and enter "sudo update-grub". When done, you will have a new GRUB config file with an entry for Windows 7.

    When you reboot, you should get the GRUB menu with options for both OSs.
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  4. #4
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    SATA drives have no problems being seen.

    I did the same. Have a 2TB HDD for W7 and storage and a second 128GB SSD for Ubuntu. You may want to choose a SSD instead of that HDD you selected since SSDs have greatly dropped in price. Unless you plan to download a lot I would question the need for a 2TB HDD which don't have great track records for reliability.

    My SSD boots up 64 bit 12.04 in ~20seconds and is FAR FASTER than any HDD!
    At first I didn't install or worry about GRUB bootloader because W7 is seldom used. I jut hit F12 if W7 was desired on boot. However after a week normal Ubuntu updates installed GRUB automatically and configured GRUB to my 2 drive setup which really surprised and impressed me. Linix ROCKS! Don't really need Windows at all anymore.
    Last edited by cybrsaylr; February 9th, 2013 at 05:41 PM.
    Ubuntu 16.04 64bit Ext4 on a Dell Studio XPS Desktop Intel® Core™ i7-860 2.8GHz, 8GB DDR3 ram and Dual booting: Ubuntu 14.04 64bit Ext4 & 32bit Vista Home Premium, on a Toshiba laptop dual core AMD Turion 64, 2.0 GHz, 4GB ram.

  5. #5
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    Quote Originally Posted by pqwoerituytrueiwoq View Post
    just add the hdd to the system and make that the primary booting hdd in the bios
    then install ubuntu to the new hdd , be sure to but the MBR on the new HDD not the win7 one, that way you can remove the new hdd and have win 7 still boot

    you could unplug the win 7 hdd and re connect it after you install ubuntu, but you will need to run sudo update-grub after you add it to get dual boot

    i personally don't trust drive that are over 1tb is capacity
    Sorry, but what's an MBR? Couldn't I just choose which HDD to boot with or is that different from dual booting?
    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Phelps View Post
    Big +1 for having the Win7 drive disconnected when installing Ubuntu. This prevents the all-too-frequent problem of GRUB getting accidentally installed to the Windows drive and hosing up Windows boot in the process.

    It's a simple matter when done to reconnect the Win 7 drive, but continue to boot from the Ubuntu drive, open a terminal and enter "sudo update-grub". When done, you will have a new GRUB config file with an entry for Windows 7.

    When you reboot, you should get the GRUB menu with options for both OSs.
    That sounds good, but I have the same question as above: couldn't I just press Esc and select which HDD to boot from?
    Quote Originally Posted by cybrsaylr View Post
    SATA drives have no problems being seen.

    I did the same. Have a 2TB HDD for W7 and storage and a second 128GB SSD for Ubuntu. You may want to choose a SSD instead of that HDD you selected since SSDs have greatly dropped in price. Unless you plan to download a lot I would question the need for a 2TB HDD which don't have great track records for reliability.

    My SSD boots up 64 bit 12.04 in ~20seconds and is FAR FASTER than any HDD!
    At first I didn't install or worry about GRUB bootloader because W7 is seldom used. I jut hit F12 if W7 was desired on boot. However after a week normal Ubuntu updates installed GRUB automatically and configured GRUB to my 2 drive setup which really surprised and impressed me. Linix ROCKS! Don't really need Windows at all anymore.
    SSDs are still too expensive for the space they give in my opinion. I know that SSDs are superior to HDDs in practically every way except for storage space but that is what matters most to me. I do plan to download a lot after all, but I guess I could switch to a 1TB if reliability is really that bad. Why is worse, though? Aren't there 3TB and 4TB HDDs by now?

  6. #6
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    Quote Originally Posted by Zeven View Post
    .... I guess I could switch to a 1TB if reliability is really that bad. Why is worse, though? Aren't there 3TB and 4TB HDDs by now?
    All HDDs 1TB and larger are getting slammed for poor reliability.
    I recently had an OEM 3yr old 1TB Seagate SATA HDD fail.
    Replaced it with a 2TB Seagate HDD because of a great 'black friday' price at Newegg but it only came with a 2yr warranty, as opposed to the 5 yr warranty Seagate used to give.

    There is a lot of complaints on a few tech boards on how HDDs > 1TB are failing at higher rates than before. Some think it may be related to SATA drives not being as well made as the old IDE drives which many thing were built to last.....so who really knows.

    FWIW I never had an old IDE drive fail but have replaced a couple SATA drives in the last year....
    Ubuntu 16.04 64bit Ext4 on a Dell Studio XPS Desktop Intel® Core™ i7-860 2.8GHz, 8GB DDR3 ram and Dual booting: Ubuntu 14.04 64bit Ext4 & 32bit Vista Home Premium, on a Toshiba laptop dual core AMD Turion 64, 2.0 GHz, 4GB ram.

  7. #7
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    Quote Originally Posted by cybrsaylr View Post
    All HDDs 1TB and larger are getting slammed for poor reliability.
    I recently had an OEM 3yr old 1TB Seagate SATA HDD fail.
    Replaced it with a 2TB Seagate HDD because of a great 'black friday' price at Newegg but it only came with a 2yr warranty, as opposed to the 5 yr warranty Seagate used to give.

    There is a lot of complaints on a few tech boards on how HDDs > 1TB are failing at higher rates than before. Some think it may be related to SATA drives not being as well made as the old IDE drives which many thing were built to last.....so who really knows.

    FWIW I never had an old IDE drive fail but have replaced a couple SATA drives in the last year....
    Well, that's discouraging news. SDDs are more reliable, aren't they? There's a Seagate HDD which is 1.20£ more expensive and has one year less warranty so I laughed to myself and ignored it. What about this one? It advertises with the following:
    Quote Originally Posted by Western Digital
    Enhanced reliability
    With a 35% MTBF improvement over standard desktop drives, the WD Red drive is designed and manufactured to be a more reliable and robust solution.

    Longer warranty coverage
    The WD Red drive is backed by a 3-year limited warranty for greater peace of mind.
    Still, IntelliPower seems to imply revolutions per minute far below 7200rpm, plus the price for that HDD is a whole 20£ more.

  8. #8
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    In theory SSDs are more reliable than HDDs but some report SSDs burn out in a couple years....so we will have to watch and see. SSDs in Windows PCs burn out quickest because some folks defragg them regularly which is very bad for SSDs. Linux is fortunate here since NO defragging is ever needed. This is a reason I didn't dual boot my 128GB SSD and just put Ubuntu on it....took 8 minutes to install and 9 minutes to update 12.04!

    I know little about WD since switching to Seagate when they all came with 5 yr warr. Also don't like that silly 'color coding' WD uses on their drives designating differing 'quality levels', whatever that means. However now all Seagate does is a 2 or 3 yr warr like WD for the most part. WD always used to all come with a 3 yr warr.
    Last edited by cybrsaylr; February 9th, 2013 at 08:20 PM.
    Ubuntu 16.04 64bit Ext4 on a Dell Studio XPS Desktop Intel® Core™ i7-860 2.8GHz, 8GB DDR3 ram and Dual booting: Ubuntu 14.04 64bit Ext4 & 32bit Vista Home Premium, on a Toshiba laptop dual core AMD Turion 64, 2.0 GHz, 4GB ram.

  9. #9
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    Quote Originally Posted by Zeven View Post
    Sorry, but what's an MBR? Couldn't I just choose which HDD to boot with or is that different from dual booting?
    master boot recored, it tells the system where to look for stuff to boot on the drive
    grub will let you choose a OS from a menu regardless of its physical location
    letting grub give yuo a chose is more convenient then hitting esc every time
    Quote Originally Posted by Zeven View Post
    That sounds good, but I have the same question as above: couldn't I just press Esc and select which HDD to boot from?
    assuming esc is your boot menu, yes; but next time your kernel updates you will have a boot menu in grub

    WD blue has a 3 year warranty while there black edition has a 5 year warranty while most seagates have a 2 year warranty
    WD owns HGST and Seagate owns Samsung HDDs (i dont think seagate owns there ssds yet)
    Last edited by pqwoerituytrueiwoq; February 10th, 2013 at 01:37 AM.
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  10. #10
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    Re: I want to get a second HDD to install Linux on!

    Quote Originally Posted by cybrsaylr View Post
    In theory SSDs are more reliable than HDDs but some report SSDs burn out in a couple years....so we will have to watch and see. SSDs in Windows PCs burn out quickest because some folks defragg them regularly which is very bad for SSDs. Linux is fortunate here since NO defragging is ever needed. This is a reason I didn't dual boot my 128GB SSD and just put Ubuntu on it....took 8 minutes to install and 9 minutes to update 12.04!

    I know little about WD since switching to Seagate when they all came with 5 yr warr. Also don't like that silly 'color coding' WD uses on their drives designating differing 'quality levels', whatever that means. However now all Seagate does is a 2 or 3 yr warr like WD for the most part. WD always used to all come with a 3 yr warr.
    I cannot remember the last time I performed a defragmention. I just use CCleaner. Does it affect HDDs at all? Glad I'll be switching to Linux if it's so efficient that it does require defragmentation. I also cannot find another HDD in a similar price range that has 24 months worth of warranty so I guess I'll be sticking with that Toshiba HDD.
    Quote Originally Posted by pqwoerituytrueiwoq View Post
    master boot recored, it tells the system where to look for stuff to boot on the drive
    grub will let you choose a OS from a menu regardless of its physical location
    letting grub give yuo a chose is more convenient then hitting esc every time

    assuming esc is your boot menu, yes; but next time your kernel updates you will have a boot menu in grub

    WD blue has a 3 year warranty while there black edition has a 5 year warranty while most seagates have a 2 year warranty
    WD owns HGST and Seagate owns Samsung HDDs (i dont think seagate owns there ssds yet)
    Can GRUB be removed? What if I just want to set the Linux HDD as the default HDD and not wait 10 to 30 seconds for it to be selected? Can that be done?

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