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Guest Dr. Who

2 hard drives [solved]

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Guest Dr. Who

I have Mandrake 2006, I'm new at this and was trying to figure out what to do exactly.

 

1. I have on my primary master 200 gig HDD for windows only.

 

2. I have on my primary slave a 80 gig HDD for linux only.

 

I was wondering what happen to just installing linux on the whole HDD like it was in 8.1 series? I don't understand it at all now need to swap create 2,3,4 partitions? Why I want to use the whole drive on this. Am I misreading or installing this the hard way? I'm not familar with the 2006 but a little familar with 8.1 version.

 

I know I remember that it did ask you didn't create a swap do you want to continue ect..

 

I bet I'm just doing this wrong any and all help will be appreciated as this may have been asked a few times already, but did a search and nothing showed up. after this I'll search some more too.

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Hmm... nothing to add but

"Welcome aboard!" :)

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Well the normal default is to create /root and /swap - I'm presuming that the apparent need to create the /swap is a throw back to the days when it was necessary i.e. that installed RAM was relatively small, when 64megs was considered a lot, so that it had too have somewhere to swap any excess memory requirement - the wisdom being that the /swap was twice the size of installed RAM.

 

Of course, now we have the luxury of plenty of cheap RAM, it's not only server kit that has 1, 2 or even more gigs of RAM - from that POV /swap is kind of redundant, though there could still be a necessity for /swap if you happen to be doing stuff "a la workstation", i.e. stuff that is hugely memory dependant like video editing or similar (an I right in presuming that CAD can also eat mountains of RAM ???).

 

So, if you have a good dig around, you may, like I did, find that it's often better to have 3, in some cases 4 partitons.

 

My setup is a legacy from having gentoo installed, plus the benefit of having a seperate /home. Hence I have /boot, /swap and /root (the same as the gentoo default), plus /home. Which means that it doesn't really matter what distro I have installed, as long as I, 1. don't touch the /home during install i.e. reformat it and 2. install the same applications as I would have used with a previous distro, then I just do an install of whatever and when I log into my /home/user (same username obviously, for log in purposes) everything "just works".

 

It's all a "choice" thing really. The only real overriding limit is the 4 primary partitions limit. So thats easily sorted out by making one of them "extended" and then making as many logical partitions within the extended one. All you have to do is remember not to touch the partition table - that can screw things big time. There is, I believe, a limit to how many logical partitons you can have, but I seem to recall that it's high enough so that if you really wanted too, you could have seperate /home, /swap, /root, /boot, /var, /usr, /tmp, /sbin, /bin, etc etc etc. Though I haven't sussed out the benefit of doing that yet, or how I'd install into it (yes I'd imagine that the /etc/fstab would be rather complicated as far as mount points and the like).

 

regards

 

John

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Of course, now we have the luxury of plenty of cheap RAM, it's not only server kit that has 1, 2 or even more gigs of RAM - from that POV /swap is kind of redundant, though there could still be a necessity for /swap if you happen to be doing stuff "a la workstation", i.e. stuff that is hugely memory dependant like video editing or similar (an I right in presuming that CAD can also eat mountains of RAM ???).
Swap is also important to have in case one of your memory sticks breaks. The system will then have the ability to fall back on /swap, thus keeping your system responsive instead of having a frozen box. ;)
if you really wanted too, you could have seperate /home, /swap, /root, /boot, /var, /usr, /tmp, /sbin, /bin, etc etc etc. Though I haven't sussed out the benefit of doing that yet, or how I'd install into it (yes I'd imagine that the /etc/fstab would be rather complicated as far as mount points and the like).
That many separate partitions are usually only useful if you have servers running or development machines. For "Joe Average", /boot /root /swap and /home is more than enough. For the installation, most distros like Gentoo, Mandriva, Fedora, Ubuntu, Debian, RHEL, Slackware,... make it very easy to install/reinstall on many separate partitions. The benefit is that it allows you to keep e.g. your customized settings in /usr, with all plugins for media intact. In case you reinstall as you simply use the existing /usr partition and don't have to install some packages and tweak your system again and again and again. It simply saves you time. :)

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I use separate partitions for Music and also for Pictures (photos, graphics and video).

The advantage of doing that and not keeping it all in Home in folders is that If I do an OS install and decide to clean out Home at the same time then I don't have to move all the stuff about to do so. Also if I have (and I do have) more than one Linux OS then I can easily set up access to those two partitions.. In the unlikely event of screwing up one of the OSs and at worst ruining everything it is linked to as well then the other OS is still going to be OK because it has not been linked in the first place. That is also the reason I have a separate fat32 partition that I title Exchange, so I can use it to pass files from LINUX TO Windows and vice-versa.

 

Cheers. John.

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Nice partitioning scheme AJ :P

 

I have 3 types of partitioning. For machines with small hard drives, I just have / and swap. The reason is that if you partition too much, you'll not have enough space for /home, /usr, /var and so on. You'd be restricting your system too much trying to figure out where you'd need the disk space most.

 

For desktops though, I tend to just have /, /home and swap. I only have one user anyway (me), so this works perfectly fine. Although if I ever reinstall, I might take AJ's advice making it easier on myself moving data around all the time from /home. Of course, I don't have to format /home when I reinstall, just remove all the hidden directories for all the apps it's remembered settings for, etc.

 

For server installs, I have partitions for /, /boot, /home, /usr, /var and swap and sometimes even a mount point where I copy the CD/DVD media to so that if I ever need to install anything later, I would just get it from here. For example /mandriva or something like that.

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Guest Dr. Who

What I did is the auto allocate and it did it for me. I read and read but never could run into this to see more. They say creating yourself is the best way but for the advance user as well. Me advance ha ha I laugh at myself. Thanks for all the info you provided and the welcome.

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The auto-allocate is pretty good. I think it defaults to using ext3 as the filesystem type and creates a /, /home and swap so you have the most common setup. Using custom partitioning can give you more flexibility, and is something you can always experiment with a little later on when feeling more comfortable with it all.

 

Happy playing :P

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