Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Possible Duplicate:
Installing Ubuntu with Windows, which is left and right when allocating space?

I am installing 12.04 from a CD on a computer with an existing Windows XP installation, which I would like to keep in case my mom can't handle Ubuntu. The problem is this:

When selecting "Install Ubuntu alongside them", the next screen gives me a choice of selecting a drive (there is only one), and "Allocate drive space by dragging the divider below:", with two unlabeled partitions. Their sizes are shown, but their content is a mystery. Between the two sub-partitions (49.3 + 32.0 GB), it's just about the entire hard drive (82.3).

My question is this: is Ubuntu about to erase the Windows installation? Do I have to use the advanced partitioning tool? I would love to assume that one of these partitions will be given to Windows XP and the other to Ubuntu, but as they are not labeled, I am at a loss.

share|improve this question

marked as duplicate by ImaginaryRobots, gertvdijk, Eric Carvalho, Jorge Castro, hhlp Jan 30 '13 at 10:02

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question.

In most of the scenario Windows XP will be installed in the first primary partition C:Drive.When you choose "Install Ubuntu alongside with Windows" Ubuntu will also be installed in the same partition. For Installing Ubuntu you need only 4.5GB but as you have 50GB space in your Windows partition you can give 10-12GB for Ubuntu. This is very simple process. If you want to create a custom partition layout. I will suggest you to copy all your data on the second partition to an external hard disk and then delete the partition. Then reboot the system with the CD and select the installation option "Something else" and create a primary partition for root file system(mount point /, file system ext4) that is 10-12GB. Leave the rest of the space as it is, which you can partition in Windows(Disk management) and this will be available in Ubuntu too. No need to crate a swap partition if you have enough RAM, and u can create swap Partition even after installation :)

share|improve this answer
Right. Thanks. I basically gave up and erased the Windows installation. – bibbledy Aug 7 '12 at 6:11

If you are not able to recognize partition. Then Abort installation. reboot your pc with windows. Check the Drives sizes. remember that Windows eats about 4 GB as for a paging so recognize carefully.

Example: In Windows 7 partitions are

C: 99Gb
D: 99gb
E: 49Gb

Linux can show this partitions as below

sda1/  103 GB
sda2/  103 GB
sda3/  53 GB

Note that which partition is big Windows C: or created New by you. and starts Installation again. Select partition carefully.

share|improve this answer
Btw--in my opinion, this part of the installation software needs a serious redesign... The current setup makes the user think that the installation alongside Windows should be straightforward with the first option, but it is far from straightforward. All of the instructions I've read online for drive partitioning/dual boot installations seem to require newbs to partition the drive manually using the advanced setup. Drive partitioning is not something you want to plunge new users into at this early stage. – bibbledy Aug 7 '12 at 6:15

I had the same problem. Ultimately, I booted into windows to fix it. I downloaded a partition tool called "easeus", and used it to format the free space to ext3. When I booted Ubuntu again from the Ubuntu CD, it recognized this partition, and I could be sure that I was not over-writing Windows.

There are several other free Windows applications to deal with partitions, but I chose that one because of the Linux support. It worked as it should.

share|improve this answer

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.