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I just received a brand new business laptop from my company.

I wanted to install Ubuntu on it. I resized Windows 7 partition and started the installation of the 10.04 LTS. However, I soon discovered a big problem that prevented me to start the installation.

The issue is that the HDD is partitioned with 4 primary partitions: 2 for Win 7 (SYSTEM and C:) and 2 for HP recovery tools. Due to this fact, even if I have more than 200GB of free space, I cannot install a new partition, because 4 is the maximum number of primary partitions!

I'm very disappointed about that, it seems that this partitioning scheme actually prevents a user to install a different OS on the HP laptops.

I thought about removing the recovery partitions, but my company did not allow me to do so.

Do you know if there is any other way to install Ubuntu on this setup?

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The problem is less with HP but more with your company's policy. HP explains how to safely remove the Recovery Partition... – outofstep Nov 4 '10 at 14:01
Why 2 partitions for Windows 7? – JanC Nov 4 '10 at 14:36
You can have many logical partitions. – Anonymous Nov 26 '11 at 13:45

You can always use Wubi. It will install Ubuntu inside your windows partition.

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Many thanks guys! – user1614281 Nov 4 '10 at 17:38
I'll go with the Wubi solution! Thanks a lot – user1614281 Nov 4 '10 at 17:39

My usual solution to this is to find a partition that I can delete. The "HP Tools" partition appears to be realatively unimportant, and can be safely deleted, allowing you to create an extended partition and then any number of logical partitions. It's pretty tiny, but you can resize other partitions to make it larger.

You may want to back up its contents in case you ever need it, though...

One word of warning. Never run the HP recovery partition. On a machine where I accidentally booted that (and only let it boot, never agreed to do anything) it re-wrote the partition table that the machine shipped with (but fortunately didn't overwrite anything)

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You don't need a primary partition to install Ubuntu, you can shrink your current tail partition and create a logical partition on the free space.

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But logical partitions are contained inside a extended partition. And the extended partition needs to a be primary partition and you can have only 4 primary parttions – Javier Rivera Nov 4 '10 at 12:24
Ops, you are right, sorry – João Pinto Nov 4 '10 at 12:54

I have a Probook as well, and the partitioning scheme is stupid, and the only way I have found is the use Wubi.

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I try Wubi (ubuntu 11.04) and it can't finish installation. It freezes in reboot. It shows the background of Desktop and then freezes. – Vassilis May 11 '11 at 12:28

You've hit the maximum number of partitions in your partition table for the disk (msdos). Basically your disk can only hold four partitions, which were already claimed by your default setup. Hypothetically you could delete the HP recovery tools partitions, but I'd recommend moving them to another disk temporarily and creating an extended partition in their place - this will allow you to create up to 8 logical partitions within the extended partition. It's a workaround for the old partition table that isn't needed for the more recent GPT partition tables that come with hard drives bigger than 2TB, or any EUFI OS, such as Windows 8.

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