Find the answer to your Linux question:
Results 1 to 9 of 9
Hi, I'm on a Macbook Pro, and right now I've moved OS X to my external drive to make room for more OS'es. (And I have changed my partition table ...
Enjoy an ad free experience by logging in. Not a member yet? Register.
  1. #1
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    4

    Partition size suggestions?


    Hi, I'm on a Macbook Pro, and right now I've moved OS X to my external drive to make room for more OS'es. (And I have changed my partition table to MBR) Anyway, here's my question:

    I plan to install Windows XP (For gaming) and three Linux distros on my hard drive. I have a 250GB (232 usable) hard drive, and 100 of that is going to Windows.

    From there, I want to install Ubuntu, Arch Linux, and Linux From Scratch. How should I partition the remaining 132GB? I'm thinking a 2GB swap space, and a shared home folder. Any suggestions for sizes? I have no idea how big each distro is, that's why I'm asking for help.


    Also, which bootloader should I use?

  2. #2
    oz
    oz is offline
    forum.guy
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    arch linux
    Posts
    18,733
    Welcome to the forums!

    I usually make my own partitions something like the following:

    Code:
    / (about 8 to 10 GB, ext3)
    swap (about 1GB, swap)
    /home (about 8 to 10 GB, ext3)
    Will you be sharing the /home partition with all distros, or make a separate /home partition for each, or will you create a /home partition at all? It makes a difference in how you do things.

    If you have lots of RAM, you might not need swap partition at all, but it's not a bad idea to make one if you have the extra space for it.

    Note that Linux From Scratch can tie up a system for a long period of time, so be sure that's what you want to do.

    I'd recommend using GRUB as your bootloader.

    Hope you have lots of fun with all of it.
    oz

  3. #3
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    9,496
    Quote Originally Posted by Veovis Muad'dib View Post
    I'm thinking a 2GB swap space, and a shared home folder. Any suggestions for sizes? I have no idea how big each distro is, that's why I'm asking for help.
    You can share a swap space between the distros, but I would very highly recommend you *NOT* share a home directory. I would also recommend you make your swap smaller. 2GB is just wasted space on a modern machine.

    Let's assume you have 2GB of actual RAM on the machine. I would only put a 512MB swap space in for that.


    Also, which bootloader should I use?
    Personal preference. Most distros these days use GRUB, but some still use LILO. Either one works just fine in my experience.
    Registered Linux user #270181
    TechieMoe's Tech Rants

  4. $spacer_open
    $spacer_close
  5. #4
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by ozar
    Will you be sharing the /home partition with all distros, or make a separate /home partition for each, or will you create a /home partition at all? It makes a difference in how you do things.
    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe
    You can share a swap space between the distros, but I would very highly recommend you *NOT* share a home directory.
    I was thinking about sharing the home directory, but I'm curious as to why you're against that, techieMoe. I'm not challenging you, I'm relatively new to Linux, I've been in locked-down OS X and Windows for years. (Not that locked down is a bad thing, OS X is a good operating system for beginners because of that.) Anyway, what is wrong with sharing a home directory? I only see the plus side of unification...

    Okay, so assuming no shared /home, I'm going to have separate /homes. Since I changed my partition table to MBR instead of GUID, I'll actually have the freedom to do so.


    Quote Originally Posted by ozar
    If you have lots of RAM, you might not need swap partition at all, but it's not a bad idea to make one if you have the extra space for it.
    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe
    I would also recommend you make your swap smaller. 2GB is just wasted space on a modern machine.



    Let's assume you have 2GB of actual RAM on the machine. I would only put a 512MB swap space in for that.
    So from both of you, I'm getting that a swap is unnecessary. I have 4 GB of RAM, so 2GB would be overkill and it's pretty much optional as to if I should use it or not... So no swap it is!

    Quote Originally Posted by ozar
    I'd recommend using GRUB as your bootloader.
    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe
    Personal preference. Most distros these days use GRUB, but some still use LILO. Either one works just fine in my experience.
    Okay, one neutral and one GRUB, GRUB it is!

    Quote Originally Posted by ozar
    Note that Linux From Scratch can tie up a system for a long period of time, so be sure that's what you want to do.
    Now, ozar, this one interests me. What do you mean it ties up a system for a long time? It takes long periods of time to do each part, or the operating system I use has to be dedicated to LFS from the beginning to the end, or what? I've only read a few chapters of the book, to see if I had the know-how to do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by ozar
    Welcome to the forums!
    ...
    Hope you have lots of fun with all of it.
    Thank you, and trust me, I will.

  6. #5
    Linux Guru Jonathan183's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    3,045
    I view LFS as a distro you build so you learn about linux ... rather than one for regular use. You build the toolchain, then you build your system, you will spend a lot of time compiling ... thats OK - you can do this easily from a live CD or chroot from one of the other distros you install.

    Home partitions ... in addition to the things you see - documents, pictures, mp3 files etc that you put in your home area there are hidden folders with your user settings eg .kde if you use kde desktop etc. You can create a single home partition and use it for all distros ... would not do this with LFS at first !
    If you do this you need to be careful that you don't select format home partition during the install process. By default the home folder for a user is located at /home/username so if you use the same username in each distro they share the same setting information, as well as documents. This may or may not cause problems

    Ed: I change the user home folder to something like /home/ubuntu/username but just have a root partition during the install and then cp -a the whole lot to a home partition afterwards and then modify /etc/fstab after. That way I have control over the process and there is no danger of overwritting home areas by the installer.
    I also try to keep the genuine user data (docs, photos etc) on a separate partition rather than home ... that makes backup much easier.

  7. #6
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan183 View Post
    I view LFS as a distro you build so you learn about linux ... rather than one for regular use. You build the toolchain, then you build your system, you will spend a lot of time compiling ... thats OK - you can do this easily from a live CD or chroot from one of the other distros you install.
    Okay, if this is what was meant by spending a lot of time, just lots of compiling, I'm all for it.

    As for it not being for regular use, I get that. But after spending so much time making it, I'd love to be able to use it too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan183 View Post
    Home partitions ... in addition to the things you see - documents, pictures, mp3 files etc that you put in your home area there are hidden folders with your user settings eg .kde if you use kde desktop etc. You can create a single home partition and use it for all distros ... would not do this with LFS at first !
    If you do this you need to be careful that you don't select format home partition during the install process. By default the home folder for a user is located at /home/username so if you use the same username in each distro they share the same setting information, as well as documents. This may or may not cause problems
    Okay, so yeah, I'll just go with more than one /home. Good stuff.

    Ed: I change the user home folder to something like /home/ubuntu/username but just have a root partition during the install and then cp -a the whole lot to a home partition afterwards and then modify /etc/fstab after. That way I have control over the process and there is no danger of overwritting home areas by the installer.
    I also try to keep the genuine user data (docs, photos etc) on a separate partition rather than home ... that makes backup much easier.[/QUOTE]

    Good advice, but I'd like to stay organized, and when I try to make my own places for things, it becomes a mess. Sticking with the defaults might work better for me. And I'm not too concerned about backing up. I back up movies, pictures, music, and a few documents, and that's it. In OS X, I always turn off Time Machine, everything I have, I either know to back up, and do so regularly, or I simply don't care about.

    Thank you all, I think I've got an idea. Even though no sizes were given, all the Distros can read each other's information, so I'll just divide it about equally. I really appreciate the tips though.

  8. #7
    Linux Guru Jonathan183's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    3,045
    Quote Originally Posted by Veovis Muad'dib View Post
    As for it not being for regular use, I get that. But after spending so much time making it, I'd love to be able to use it too.
    The problem is keeping the system upto date after ... with most distros you get a package manager and you have people maintaining repositories and providing patches etc. With LFS your on your own. If the system isn't going near the net then you don't really have an issue - otherwise you do.

    As far as partition size is concerned I think ozar gave some suggestions but partitioning is down to personal preference and what you use the system for ... theres pros and cons to each approach and no absolute right answer

    Anyway - enjoy your Linux

  9. #8
    Just Joined!
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan183 View Post
    The problem is keeping the system upto date after ... with most distros you get a package manager and you have people maintaining repositories and providing patches etc. With LFS your on your own. If the system isn't going near the net then you don't really have an issue - otherwise you do.

    As far as partition size is concerned I think ozar gave some suggestions but partitioning is down to personal preference and what you use the system for ... theres pros and cons to each approach and no absolute right answer

    Anyway - enjoy your Linux
    Okay, I get that... But it'll be quite fun to build, so I'm not too concerned...

    Oh, I forgot about ozar's suggestions after I read them the first time. I'm thinking I'll use those sizes for LFS and Arch, and leave Ubuntu the rest...

    And thank you: I always enjoy my Linux. It's like Folger's.

  10. #9
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    5,023
    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe View Post
    You can share a swap space between the distros, but I would very highly recommend you *NOT* share a home directory.
    I agree with every suggestion posted thus far, this one most of all. It may seem like you're trying to unify the directories, and while it's possible, you'll still have to watch out because with a shared /home you'll not only have to make sure that user settings are the same, but also that filenames match. Saving a file like Nethack with custom settings on the /home directory of Arch will possibly affect the custom settings of Nethack on the directory of either LFS or Ubuntu.
    Jay

    New users, read this first.
    New Member FAQ
    Registered Linux User #463940
    I do not respond to private messages asking for Linux help. Please keep it on the public boards.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •