disk partitioning problem (ignore the first e-mail I did not mean to send that one)
mike.mccarty at sbcglobal.net
Mon Jul 25 22:09:27 UTC 2005
Alex Aguilar wrote:
> According to my defrag report, witch I have as an attachment to this
e-mail, I still have 22.65GB's worth of free space on my harddisk, yet
when I used disk druid and chose the option to have my disk
automatically formated with out erasing any existing partitions, and
using the rest of the free space on my hard disk, it displayed an error
message telling me "Error partitioning, could not allocate requested
partitions partitioning failed: could not allocate partitions as primary
partitions." What is the problem, and how could I fix this? I realy want
to have linux installed on my pc, it will be my first distribution.
Please use shorter lines.
You really have a little bit of a misconception, and also a significant
First, what you need to understand about discs is that they are
divided, at some time in their lives, into something called
by various names, but usally called "partitions". Each partition
is then formatted, and a volume created. The volume is then
formatted, and a file system installed. (This neglects the so-called
low-level format, which on modern drives should only be done
once by the manufacturer.) To further complicate things, partitions
are either "primary" or "extended". An extended partition may
have multiple volumes created inside them, sort of sub-partitions.
Primary partitions may only have one volume each. Only primary
partitions may be marked as being the boot partition at
any time. This is referred to by various terms you may encounter
such as "active", "boot", "bootable", etc.
In the usual scheme, up to four (4) partitions may be defined,
and as many as one (1) of these may be an extended partition.
Essentially, on any given partition, only one OS may live.
So, while you have free space on your drive, it is in a partition
of which Windows expects to have complete ownership. Since (as
you mentioned below) you already have Windows XP HE installed, you
almost surely have an NTFS (New Technology File System) on that
disc. You could try ntfs-resize (IIRC, that's the name) to shrink
your partition. If you do that, then you would have a new partition
which was earlier free space on the Windows XP partition. In effect,
you would move the boundary.
Be sure to do a full backup of your system, and verify the backup
before trying to do anything like this to your disc.
Also, since you want to multi-boot Windows XP and something
else, you have further complications. I have a multi-boot
Windows XP / Fedora Core 2 (various versions). This is tricky
to set up, and for some time after doing my install, I was
unable to boot XP. Then for a while, I was able to boot
XP, but not Fedora, except by means of a GRUB boot disc.
My suggestion is to leave boot the responsibility of XP.
DO NOT INSTALL ANY OTHER BOOT MEANS INTO YOUR MASTER BOOT
RECORD (MBR). Let the XP boot manager do its work, and load
GRUB or other secondary boot for you. When you install
Linux, do not install a boot manager, but rather use, for
example, GRUB off of a floppy. Get to the point where you
can boot Linux using your boot floppy, then install onto
the boot volume for Linux, not to the MBR. Grab a copy of
that boot record, and let XP boot manager load it for you.
Anyway, then you run into the question "Now that I've got my
free space on my disc out from under control of Windows, How
do I partition the space for use by Linux?" Unfortunately,
that question has about as many answers as there are users.
Each method has its adherents. Each method has its detractors.
If I had my install to do over again I would do some things
First, I'd allow at least 20GIG for Linux. 10GIG is insufficient,
Second, I'd put /home into a separate partition from
either /boot or root (/).
This message made from 100% recycled bits.
I can explain it for you, but I can't understand it for you.
I speak only for myself, and I am unanimous in that!
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