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K1n6 Paranoia

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Hi Mandrivausers.org,


Nice to say hello to all of you.


I have read some articles on linux and its distribution and some are still arent clear to me.

I still havent tried to install an linux OS but i tried runnng a live CD of Mandriva. Im confused the partition needed . I am a total noob.

I tried searching some of the post but nothing seems to fit my problem. Forgive me if there is the same post like mine.


I have questions in installation


I have laptop, now it has a three partition hard drive. drive c:,d:,e:, 14gb-50gb-50gb....xp,vista, free space partition respectively...


1. Will the 14gb be enough to mandriva installaltion or should I consider big space?


2. In some installation guide, I have seen that that partitioning option is USE FREE SPACE and CUSTOMDISK PARTITIONING..

Will the installation find my 50 gb free space at drive e:?


3. I also read that you have to make more partition for linux installation, in my current partition should I still need to a new partition? maybe drive f: and drive g:? or Mandriva installation will make a partition on the drive e: if i choose drive e:


4. Is it possible and not too much to have a triple boot? I will love it if it is possible


Hope someone could enlighten my mind.


Best regards,



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Hello and Welcome to Mandrivausers.org affectionately known as MUB.

I can answer some of your questions but not all.


1. 14gb is more than enough to install Mandriva.

2. Not too sure how things will behave here. The Use Free Space option usually partitions a Windows installation and uses the free space that Windows does not use on the given drive.

3. Mandriva installation will create the required partitions for you in the space you select.

4. It is certainly possible to triple boot, but I have not done this myself so I will leave that to someone who has.


A thing to note about Linux is that drive letters are not used as they are in windows. Partitions are referenced like :- Drive c: becomes /hda/ and D: becomes /hdb/ etc. Each drive then has its own partitions which are referenced :- /hda1/ /hda6/ etc.

If you are not using Drive E: for anything then this would be the drive to install to. At this moment I would wait until some of the more enlightened users come onboard to tell you how to do this. It may take a few hours before you get further replies as there are different timezones involved and some of the others will be sleeping.

I hope this helps some of your queries.

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Just wanted to add, if it's one hard disk, then it would be /dev/hda or /dev/sda as it's only on one hard disk. If there is a second hard disk, then it would be /dev/hdb or /dev/sdb and also depends whether attached to the primary or secondary controller.


For example a machine I have at home has two hard disks on the primary controller, and two CD/DVD drives on the secondary controller. This then ends up as:


First HDD - /dev/hda

Second HDD - /dev/hdb

First CD/DVD - /dev/hdc

Second CD/DVD - /dev/hdd


partitions are then numbered on the disk. In your instance it would be:


/dev/sda1 - C:

/dev/sda2 - D:

/dev/sda3 - E:


You can choose custom partition and then let Mandriva auto-partition the free space. This will normally create three partitions:


/dev/sda5 - swap

/dev/sda6 - /

/dev/sda7 - /home


Even if the disk was blank, the partitioning would be exactly identical to what I've chosen above. I would suggest however, that you just use custom, and then do two partitions. One for swap and one for /. That way, you're not restricting yourself by allocating too much space to /home and then finding you can't install many apps! If you've only got 14GB you can follow this partitioning scheme, else if 50GB, then go for the full three. 14GB can technically be partitioned correctly, but it can be limiting between what to allocate for / and /home. You won't need more than 1GB for swap, although 512MB would be sufficient as a minimum.

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Triple, quadruple booting, or more, is do-able. I make one installation a base or home for grub and edit that file for all others. I do not chain load except for windows.

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Thanks for the kind answers. Truly where our users feel @ /home.....Thanks

Thanks SilverSurfer60, ianw1974 and Ixthusdan.


So i see. Based on your answer, I finally made up my mind to install it in my drive E:> I usually used this drive as a common drive for my xp and vista. Maybe I'll just use mu portable harddrive asa common.

I only used one hard drive. Which is a 120gb harddrive of my laptop. But.....


Is DVD/CD drives and virtual are counted as drives? It would make c,d,e,f and g drives are now used. Will this will be the case

/dev/sda1 - C:

/dev/sda2 - D:

/dev/sda3 - E: (free space)

/dev/sda4 - F: dvd/cd

/dev/sda5 -G: virtual drive

/dev/sda6 - swap ----after installation?

/dev/sda7- /

/dev/sda8 - /home




/dev/sda1 - C:

/dev/sda2 - D:

/dev/sda3? - E: (free space) --after installation

/dev/sda3 - E: swap

/dev/sda4- F: /

/dev/sda5 - G: /home

/dev/sda6 -H: dvd/cd

/dev/sda7 -I: virtual drive



I already back-up my computer but restoring it when worst will happen is the last thing in my mind. I dont want to undergo to that. Very stressful. I think.


Please explain further. Timezone makes other users a world apart. I will be waiting for your answer guys. Thank a lot.


Best regards,


Edited by K1n6 Paranoia
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Right, I have had a cup of coffee so I will try and answer your question :)

After installation you should finish up with:-

/dev/sda1 = Windows

/dev/sda2 = Windows

/dev/sda3 will no longer be but will become

/dev/sda5 /home

/dev/sda6 /swap

/dev/sda7 /


your CD/DVD will be mounted under 'media:cdrom' regardless of what it is. I say mounted because that is the terminology used instead of the Windows Letters.

As far as I know the above is correct, if it is not someone will put me in my place, and correct any mistakes.


Where your portable drive would be mounted I am not sure.

I need another cup of coffee now. :D

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hi SilverSurfer60, and MUB,



Sorry for late response. I just came back from work.


Maybe Ill install on Wednesday. and see if it will work. I hope so.


No point in being pessimistic, it wouldn't work anyway


Ill use my 50gb free. I will just fill every window drives so that there will no free space and mandriva installation

will get the free space in my 50gb free space in drive E:. Hows that? My understanding is that installation will only see

used space and free space in hard drives. Then it will cut a portion of that free space for its installation where it will get and

create its 3 new partition from the cut free portion.... I hope my understanding is right.......


B4 i will install....Defrag every windows installation...ryt


anymore tips b4 i install it on wednesday.





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Good morning K1n6, at least it's morning where I am.

In response to your last posting I will be in uncharted waters for myself as I have never had to make the choices you are going to make, so please take my thoughts as just thoughts and not as words from an expert. Maybe someone with more experience could offer better advice here.

Anyhow I see things this way. You should not need to fill your windows partitions as they are partitions and in all sense separate drives. With this in mind when you begin to install I would be inclined to select custom partitioning as suggested by Ianw1974. This way you will be sure to partition and format the correct section of your hard drive.

I do believe your understanding is for a hard drive with just the one windows partition, because normally Windows is very greedy and will use the whole of the available space and the Mandriva installer is able to regain the unused space from Windows and resize the Windows partition. Therefore in your case you will probably need to select the partition that you want to install to.

I sincerely hope you understand my explanation and indeed my understanding is correct. If your are in any doubt post back before installing as you could quite possibly overwrite one of your Windows installs. I would hate to think I gave you the wrong information and you had to reformat and start all over.

Edited by SilverSurfer60
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A note of caution: You must allow windows free space on its drive for the page file. Windows will stop running if you inadvertently do not allow for space in its partitions. You can always adjust the page file to a smaller size, but then windows will work slower than it already does. It is best to allow empty space on the windows partition that has the operating system.

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Note that on dualboot computers it is generally much easier to get an acess from linux to data on windows partitions than vice versa.

Especially when this data is on fat partitions (although it works ok with ntfs nowadays).

Especially if you are simply trying out and learning your ways around in linux.

Therefore my approach has usually been to give linux enough space for system and essential software and data, but not much more. Music, pics and documents that need to be accessible from both linux and windows are better to be left on windows partitions. I would say, nowadays 15GB would be generous for linux, for most learning purposes even 4-5GB will do just fine.


Second, do not try to compare linux and windows filesystems. It will be just plain confusing, cause logic is quite different. As you do different administration tasks in linux, you will learn how it works, for the beginning you wont need to touch anuthing but your /home for personal data and /mnt where windows partitions will be mounted.


Third, partitioning the space you are going to use for linux depends on what you are going to use it for. Schemes vary enormously. For ordinary home-office use 4-5GB / partition is fine, rest of the space can be made into separate /home (separate home is good if you reinstall, e.g. if trying another distro or upgrading Mandriva - you can reformat / but leave /home with your data and docs intact). Partitioning is most confusing part for us noobs, so if your into learning do it the hard way, do some home reading and custom-partition your install.



Did I mention backup?

Anyway, dont forget to backup.


Welcome to the club


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hi MUB,


I already installed the Mandriva. I can t hold myself..hehehe.... I think everything went out well. My xp and vista is still there and booting quitely and smoothly.

I used ianw1974 s advise to use custom installation. At first, Im still exploring until i figured it out. Setting my drive E as empty. Then auto allocate.

/home is quite big so i resized it.Leaving 4 drives for linux.


Though when i reboot the Mandriva. It just show the GRUB selection , of course, I selected, Mandriva then it show that picture but wont boot. Maybe there is a problem in booting. I just dont know. Please help me. plssssss


I just discover that the drives that Linux has created is not visible in windows. But the good thing is Windows vista became faster after i give up drive E.


Ill be waiitng for response on how it will boot properly. Or you just give me a link.


Many thanks who help me. Hope my question can also help other noobs like me.



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Before we start analyzing things here I would like to ask a question as your explanation is a little mixed up or it could be me that's a bit thick.

First when you say Windows is running well how are you starting your Windows, by this I mean are you starting them from the grub menu?

I ask this as there are a number of reasons why Linux would not boot and of course we need to know which way to go forward.


Don't worry about the Linux partition not showing up in Windows as Windows knows nothing about Linux.

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Though when i reboot the Mandriva. It just show the GRUB selection , of course, I selected, Mandriva then it show that picture but wont boot. Maybe there is a problem in booting. I just dont know. Please help me. plssssss
Is'nt Mandriva booting into the graphical interface (KDE) and you see a black screen with something like
[willie@localhost ~]$

Edited by willie
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hi MUB,


I dont know about KDE but at first it intialize...load the GRUB menu aand show the Mandriva picture with selection of


Boot in Mandriva (i dont remember exactly the word)

Boot in Mandriva Safe mode (i think)

Boot in Windows ( if you select this, it will show the black background which is a native window boot, here you can select xp and vista)


so, of course. I will select Boot in Mandriva. Then it will show the mandriva picture(with picture and status bar on the left or right bottom) but status bar is not moving.


as far as I can remember in the installation....in booting, maybe this is a problem. i dont know...







I think this is the order of booting..Maybe.................



Thanks for advice and kind answers.

Edited by K1n6 Paranoia
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