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Thread: Question on Separate ./home Partition

  1. #1
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    Question on Separate ./home Partition

    I understand when upgrading you select Maunal and point the new install to the ./ partition for the new OS and to preserve the old home set up/config you point to the ./home partition and select not to format. I haven't done this (yet) but can you confirm that by not selecting to format the install will not install any home folders (Desktop, Documents, Downloads, etc) in either the ./ partition or ./home partition. As a side note - if you do a normal install (no separate ./home partiton) and choose not to format I assume the install will take place - this means that when you have separate partitions the format option (for the ./home partition) takes on a whole different meaning. The install will install ./ but not ./home - clever if this is how it works.

  2. #2
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    Re: Question on Separate ./home Partition

    There should be absolute paths, not relative to the current directory, so the dots should not be there in

    / for root partition

    and

    /home for home partition

    (I will not reply to the general question here, because you need unbiased input from other persons.)

  3. #3
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    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    /home

    Having a separate /home partition will allow you to format the system (/) yet leave you user files as they are. I have used that method for upgrades (actually fresh installs) almost since I started with Ubuntu, and recommend it highly. Just make sure you are pointing to the right partitions. You can see what you currently have using the mount utility with no options. That will give you a list of everything mounted and then you can write down which partitions are used for root and /home.

    However, please do a proper backup anyway before trying any installation or upgrade. Accidents do happen and it's better to have a good backup and not need it than the other way around.

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  5. #5
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    Re: Question on Separate ./home Partition

    Quote Originally Posted by Quarkrad View Post
    I understand when upgrading you select Maunal and point the new install to the ./ partition for the new OS and to preserve the old home set up/config you point to the ./home partition and select not to format. I haven't done this (yet) but can you confirm that by not selecting to format the install will not install any home folders (Desktop, Documents, Downloads, etc) in either the ./ partition or ./home partition.
    That's correct, it won't touch your /home at all. I literally did this today!

    As a side note - if you do a normal install (no separate ./home partiton) and choose not to format I assume the install will take place - this means that when you have separate partitions the format option (for the ./home partition) takes on a whole different meaning. The install will install ./ but not ./home - clever if this is how it works.
    Yes, the install takes place, and it preserves your /home as long as you don't format /. It also makes note of what software you have and then reinstalls that software from the new repositories. Pretty clever, but surprisingly few people know about it.
    I try to treat the cause, not the symptom. I avoid the terminal in instructions, unless it's easier or necessary. My instructions will work within the Ubuntu system, instead of breaking or subverting it. Those are the three guarantees to the helpee.

  6. #6
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    Re: Question on Separate ./home Partition

    Something you might want to know is you can move your /home to another partition on your hard drive
    after you have Ubuntu installed.

    On boot up, Ubuntu uses /etc/fstab to locate where /home is on the hard drive.
    My /etc/fstab file has this entry for /home:
    # Use /dev/sda3 as /home ...
    UUID=006fba9b-f027-48b7-96ec-832d93ac9711 /home ext4 defaults 0 2


    When I was configuring Ubuntu 14.04, I moved my /home to another partition simply by editing that
    file, changing the UUID, and copying the /home data to the new partition.

    You can enter sudo blkid -o list to find the association of UUID and /dev/sdxx associations.
    Last edited by cwmoser; April 25th, 2014 at 12:06 PM.
    Carl
    My other hobby is antique Radios and TV restoration.

  7. #7
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    Re: Question on Separate ./home Partition

    Thank you all - this beast (ubuntu) is more clever than I thought (in terms of installing).

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