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I'm attempting to set up my new Dell with a dual boot Windows/SuSE 10.1 setup. I've searched here and other places, but I'm unable to find to answer I'm looking ...
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  1. #1
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    Dell Inspiron Dual Boot


    I'm attempting to set up my new Dell with a dual boot Windows/SuSE 10.1 setup. I've searched here and other places, but I'm unable to find to answer I'm looking for.

    I currently have the following partition setup:

    1. Approximately 50MB Dell Utility/MediaDirect
    2. 50GB XP
    3. 50GB Extended containing one FAT32 Logical (currently no data)
    4. 15GB currenly unformatted

    My understanding is that for SuSE 10.1 to run properly it needs a swap partition as well as a boot partition for Grub. Will splitting partition 4 into 3 pieces (Boot, SuSE,Swap) be valid, or do I need to incorporate that space into the Extended partition in order to have a valid configuration?

    Somewhere I've read that a MBR can only have 4 records total with no more than one extended. If I configured my partitions the way I want I'd have 6 total which somewhere else I read is valid. Which is correct?

    TIA,

    Josh

  2. #2
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChlkDstTtr
    My understanding is that for SuSE 10.1 to run properly it needs a swap partition as well as a boot partition for Grub. Will splitting partition 4 into 3 pieces (Boot, SuSE,Swap) be valid, or do I need to incorporate that space into the Extended partition in order to have a valid configuration?
    Actually, you do not need a separate boot partition for SuSE; only a SWAP and a root partition. SWAP is actually not really all that useful for newer machines with more than 512MB of RAM, but it's generally accepted that you should create a small (512MB or less) SWAP anyway.

    You should not have to do any of this manually. The SuSE installer should pick up your 15GB of free space and do all the partitioning for you.
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    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe
    You should not have to do any of this manually. The SuSE installer should pick up your 15GB of free space and do all the partitioning for you.
    Thanks for your answer.

    That's actually what I'm intending to do. I guess the way I worded it does make it sound like I would do it manually though. My biggest concern was limitations on the number of partitions.

    So from what you said this is the way it should look?:

    1. Dell Utilities/MediaDirect
    2. XP
    3. Extended w/ 1 FAT32 Partition
    4. Swap
    5. Linux
    (4 and 5 may be switched - I don't know which order SuSE configures it).

    So Grub will get installed on the Linux partition with pointers from the MBR? For some reason I got the idea it needed it's own partition.

    Thanks,

    Josh

  4. #4
    Super Moderator devils casper's Avatar
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    Hi !!

    1. Dell Utilities/MediaDirect
    2. XP
    3. Extended w/ 1 FAT32 Partition
    4. Swap
    5. Linux
    your partition structure will be like that only... SuSe wont create its own Boot partition... it will install GRUB in MBR... no pointers...



    .... casper ....
    It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.
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    Well I started the process I planned above, but the installation would only allow 4 primary partitions so I ended up doing this:

    1. Dell Utilities/MediaDirect
    2. XP
    3. Extended containing:
    a. FAT32
    b. Linux Swap
    c. Linux /
    d. Linux /Home

    I'm not really sure why SuSE wanted to split / and /Home into two partitions, but since I've never uses SuSE before I decided to just let it do it's thing.

    One issue I did end up experiencing was having the Grub installation overwrite my Dell MediaDirect MBR records. I attempted to recover MediaDirect using the Dell utilities, but that just ended up hosing the Grub MBR records. In the end I ended up recovering Grub and I'll figure out MediaDirect sometime. It's not like I'm losing functionality since all the features are already included in XP Media Center Edition, but I thought it was a nice feature to be able to watch DVDs without loading all the XP resources.

    Thanks again,

    Josh

  6. #6
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChlkDstTtr
    I'm not really sure why SuSE wanted to split / and /Home into two partitions, but since I've never uses SuSE before I decided to just let it do it's thing.
    It's not really strictly necessary to split out your /home/ directory, but it can be handy if you have to reinstall for some reason. You can point the installer to your existing home directory and it won't overwrite your applications preferences and documents and such. I personally don't care enough to make it separate, and not a lot of distributions do this by default. You were probably quite right in just letting the installer do what it wanted. Less potential for something going wrong that way.
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  7. #7
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    Media Direct

    Is anybody trying to keep their media direct partition? I had no problem in removing it to install ubuntu in my E1705 but my gf just bought an E1505 and wants to keep it. But I dont know how to tell grub to boot it.. I tried adding this to the menu.lst:

    title Dell Media Direct
    root (hd0,4)
    savedefault
    makeactive
    chainloader +1

    but this just gives me an error message saying filesystem type unknown.

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