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Mandriva 2010 install & partition with multi boot


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Trying to install Mandriva One 2010 KDE. One harddrive partitioned with three versions of windows on their partitions and two free partitions (NTFS). Want to have Mandriva on one of the free partitions (40gb). I've come so far as the part where I choose the partition and indicate that it has to be /. (Believe that that is the right sign, not sure what it measns. However, I then have to assign a swap partition. Firstly I have no idea how to do that and secondly I want the swap partition to be in the same partition of fourty gb and again have no idea how to do that. Windows partitions I would really like to keep where they are. Any help is most welcome.

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Welcome Lennart to Mandriva.


A typical linux install requires 3 partitions: one for 'root' (indicated by '/'), one for swap and one for 'home'. Root contains many different directories that make up the base operating system, its configuration any extra programs that you have selected and an area where various programs log what they have done. Home contains user files. Swap is the the equivalent of the windows pagefile, but under linux is on a separate partition. It is possible to combine root and home on one partition, but splitting has the advantage that you can easily change your operating system without affecting the data.


In your case I would select custom partitioning when the disk partitioning program (diskdrake) starts. Select a free 40 Gb partition and create the following 3 partitions:


  • Root -- ~10 Gbyte. Mountpoint = '/'. File-system ext3
  • Swap -- ~2 Gb. File system is linux swap
  • Home -- rest for Mountpoint =/home


Take the sizes as rough guess. 10 Gb may seem small, but is (in my experience) more than enough for trying out Linux and experimenting with quite some software (my own / is ~5 Gb of which 60% is used). Diskdrake should format the newly created partitions.

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The size of the swap partition is debatable. Actually there's good reasoning, if you have sufficient RAM (1 GB or more) to limit swap to 256 MB, or even omit swap completely. I have just 256MB on my desktops, while on my laptop I have swap slightly larger than the physical RAM (because I do use sometimes the suspend to disk feature).

10G is fair for root, and for some systems that have heavy net I/O's and for that reason large logfiles, a separate /var partition makes sense.

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