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Hello all, I have an older machine that is presently running 2 HD's on it (160 gib & 120 gib) and would like to be able to load Ubuntu 8.04 ...
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  1. #1
    Just Joined! wilsons.way's Avatar
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    Question Best partitioning recommendations for 2 HD's


    Hello all,

    I have an older machine that is presently running 2 HD's on it (160 gib & 120 gib) and would like to be able to load Ubuntu 8.04 LTS as well as other distros for experimenting with. I'm getting used to Fedora 9 atm and would most likely like to put it on the same drive as my LTS Ubuntu version.

    My dilemma is this: I'd like to be able to share the same /home partition no matter what drive or at least something to that effect if possible.

    So for those partitioning gurus out there, what would you suggest? Split each drive in 2 equal sections? Can they share the same swap? Best way to configure boot?

    I'm learning already that Fedora should be installed first because Ubuntu tends to recognize other distros much better than some others but I'd rather wait to see what you experts suggest.

    Thanks for your time. It's much appreciated.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru bigtomrodney's Avatar
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    I had this same dilemma with two 320GB drives and I went with LVM. I created boot, root and tmp partitions on the first drive leaving about 300GB on it. Then I created an LVM group with that 300GB and the whole other 320GB. Gave me a total of about 600GB of transparently usable home partition after you round off the gigabytes vs. gibibytes and filesystem overhead. Niiiice.

    I'm about to do it again across two terabyte drives. Another similar option is JBOD - Just a bunch of disks. It's similar to RAID but the disks can be different sizes.

  3. #3
    Linux Guru Jonathan183's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forums wilsons.way

    You can share the /home partition and it does not need to be on the same drive as the distro root. You can use one swap partition for all distros ... 2x RAM upto 1GB should be sufficient

    If you intend sharing the same home partition then you should either have different user names or create folders for each distro ... otherwise each distro will write over previous user settings.

    I'd allow 10 or 15GB for each distro root. I also like to keep user data seperate from home folders ... so I have separate data partitions.

    You are limited to 4 primary partitions, one of which can be an extended partition (which can then contain logical partitions). The combination of primary and logical partitions is limited to 16.

    I would not create a boot partition unless you are forced to due to BIOS limitations. When you install the bootloader (grub in most cases) you can install this to the root partition of the distro and chainload it from your main distro.

    Ed: if you intend using the same home partition then either install without a separate home partition and cp information and modify /etc/fstab after to mount the home partition
    or
    be very careful that during the install you don't select format the home partition otherwise you will loose all your home partition information

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    Just Joined! wilsons.way's Avatar
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    What would you then recommend as a starting distro? I'm still a bit confused on the different partitions and so on. Anyway to locate a guided tutorial of sorts?

  5. #5
    oz
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    Quote Originally Posted by wilsons.way View Post
    What would you then recommend as a starting distro? I'm still a bit confused on the different partitions and so on. Anyway to locate a guided tutorial of sorts?
    Welcome to the forums!

    Check the link in my signature for lots of good information on getting started with Linux. You'll also find a couple of quizzes there that might help you to pick that first distribution.

    I generally keep my own partition scheme simple and make something like the following for Linux:

    Code:
    / (about 10 to 12 GB, ext3)
    swap (about 1GB, swap)
    /home (about 10 to 12 GB, ext3)
    oz

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    Just Joined! wilsons.way's Avatar
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    Thanks oz for the newbie tips but I've been using Ubuntu for over a year now. I'm just now beginning to look to other distros for their uniqueness and all they may offer.

    My lack of knowledge is really due to the partitioning part of things but I'll head to google now instead. Thanks.

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