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I had a failing hard-drive so I cloned it with dd to larger 500 GB HD. It seemed to have worked well, but I have all this unallocated free space at the end of the disk (230 GB). I tried to used gparted from a liveUSB to allocate all this space to my root + home partitions (other than that I only have a small extended partition with the swap). It won't let me do this. I can only create another partition, or allocate the free space to the extended partition. I can however reduce the size of the root + home partition since I wasn't using all the space.

Is there a way to put this free space to my root + home partition after all?

Or do I have to go with another partition. If so I'd like to separate my home from the root, reduce the root partition and create a ext4 logical home partition. What would be the best and safest way to do this?

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You can do it, but maybe not in one step. You need free space adjacent to the space you want to expand. If another partition is in the way, such as the swap drive, you would need to first move it to the end (easy to do in gparted, just create a new swap partition, and delete the old one. Then, you should be able to increase the partition.

Ideally, you should have a single big extended partition, and everything else should be logical drives inside this extended partition (unless you have Windows on the drive, too; it likes to be a primary partition, I think). But if you have a primary partition, it can still be expanded if there is adjacent space.

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Hey Marty, thanks, I missed that step of removing the free space from the extended partition. –  saulo Jul 1 '12 at 0:16

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