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I currently have a IBM Thinkpad and it has Windows 2000 Professional on it. I want to put Mandrake 10.1 on and also keep my windows OS as well. I ...
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    Partitioning for Dual Boot


    I currently have a IBM Thinkpad and it has Windows 2000 Professional on it. I want to put Mandrake 10.1 on and also keep my windows OS as well. I was wondering how ( how meaning where should i put which partitions) to set up my partitions. I have Partition Magic 8 so i was planning on using that to partition. I got some advice to put a linux boot partition at the beginning of the hard drive and then to place my windows partition and then finally my linux partitions. Since I cant place the entire Linux partition after my Windows partition because it would totally be behind the 1024 cylinder, I guess i was just wondering how people partition there dual OS machines.

    Is this the perfered way to partition or how have other users accomplished this task? Thanks in advance.

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    Linux Guru dylunio's Avatar
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    On my SuSE/WinXP comp I have the following settup:

    /dev/hda1 = 50GB XP
    /dev/hda4 = 14GB linux_storage
    /dev/hda2 = 512MB SWAP
    /dev/hda3 = 7GB /

    thats how my hard drive is set up, and I have GRUB as my bootloader on the MBR, but since Mandrake uses LILO bootloader I'm not sure if there will be any differences needed;

    hope this gives some insight;

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    thanks for the info I take it that none of your linux partitions are before the 1024 cylinder since Windows takes up 50GB.

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    Trusted Penguin Dapper Dan's Avatar
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    PM 8 is the best partitioning utility out there in my opinion. Since I run multiple distros, I even re-installed XP on hda1 for no other reason than to be able to use it. I would create the partitions with PM8, then format them under the excellent Mandrake partitioning utility when you do the install.

    You can put all your Linux partitions after Windows, just be sure not to re-size your Windows partition to above the 1024 barrier as this can create a Windows booting problem in older machines. Mandrake will by default want to install Lilo to the MBR which should allow you to boot between Windows and Mdk.

    You'll have to decide how large or small the partitions should be, but a good rule of thumb is to make your swap partition 3 times the size of your RAM. I usually make my / and my /home partitions around the same size. I'd set up my partitions something like this.

    hda1 - Windows (do not format)
    hda* - / (format with reiserFS)
    hda* - swap
    hda* - /home (format with reiserFS)

    Make sure you back up all your valuable Windows files, and also do a thorough defrag of Windows before attempting any partitioning.
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    ok well thanks for the help guys i used PM 8 to repartition and as far as i can tell things went well. I left my windows partition where it was and shrunk it to about 12 GB. Then i made a Linux Swap that is 512MB at the end of the drive. Then between the swap and windows partitions i made a EXt3 partition that was 15GB. everything seemed to go fine so i was gonna pop in Mandrake 10.1 CD1 and let it do its thing. However when i boot from the cd it starts and it says detecting USB devices and then it says loading program to memory. Before the red bar even starts to go accross it gives me this error:

    Could not uncompress second stage ramdisk. This is probably an hardware error while reading the data. (this may be caused be a hardware failure or a linux kernel bug)

    Windows still starts up perfectly and i looked in the hardware device manager in windows and there dont seem to be any hardware failures. Did I do something wrong? Did i forget something? I am new to dual booting and partitioning but not new to Windows and i have some linux experience. Any ideas would be greatly apreciated.

    Also its not the CDs because they arent scratched at all and i just put this distro from the same cds on an IBM desktop last night with no problems. CDs worked fine then. But that was a mandrake only install not a dual boot. thanks again.

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    when its trying to load the program to memory i pushed alt-f3 to see the log thing and it says:

    have to insmod keybdev
    needs keybdev
    file-not-found-in-archive keybdev.ko ( maybe you can try another boot floppy such as 'hdcdrom_usb.img' )
    warning, insmod failed ( keybdev (null) ) (2)

    After a bunch more lines of seemilngly successful things :

    found a Mandrakelinux CDROM, good news!
    Total Memory: 128 Mbytes
    trying to load /sysroot/tmp/image/install/stage2/mdkinst_stage2.bz2 as a ramdisk
    raading compressed ramdisk: IO_ERROR

    im not sure what all that means but if any one could teach me what some of this means i would aprieciate it a lot

    edit -
    When i hit Alt-f4 it says some stuff like this :

    <3> Buffer I/O error of device hdc, logical block 309334
    <4> hdc: media error ( bad sector ) status = 0x51 {driveready seekcomplete error}
    <4> hdc: media error ( bad sector ) : error=0x34
    <4>end_request I/O error on device hdc, sector 1237340

    So . . . . .
    Do i have to do some formattting or make the partition active or something? thanks

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    Linux Guru dylunio's Avatar
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    It seems to be conplaining about bad media, so did you check the md5sums of the downloads? if not check them.
    if they are not correct, re-download the files, if they are correct try reburning the cd's at a slower speed recomended below x16.

    hope this helps;

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    well i gues i did burn the cds at 32X or 40X cant remember, but i already installed Linux on one PC with these disks. But i guess it could be the difference in Cd drives?

    Any way how would i go about checking a md5sum and where do i find it? Sorry i am unfamiliar with this. Thanks

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    Linux Guru dylunio's Avatar
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    if you are in windows download something like fastSum and compair with the md5 files from were you downloaded, or in linux:
    Code:
    md5sum /path/to/ISO
    dylunio
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    ok i redownloaded all 3 cds and checked the md5 numbers ( they all checked out good ) and then i burned them at 8X to make sure i got a good burn. But i get the same error. The cd starts up, it says press ENTER to install, then it loads the cd, and then it checks for USB devices ( which I have none ), then it trys to load the program into memory and then it hangs. It tries to load for a minute or so and then give me the error. If anyone has any further suggestions that would be great. i dont understand why i cant even load the cd to start the process. Did i do something wrong when partitioning?

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