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Pretty simple question i think.

I am going to install a 2terabyta SATA drive in my PC, I want to partion it using windows disk manager (a 500gig for Ubuntu the other 1500 for storage)

If i choose to format the 500 gig partition from windows ready for the Ubuntu install. will this work? ie: Fat32 or NTfile system?

Or does Ubuntu have it own file system which the partion needs to be formatted in off the bootable DVD?

Im assuming it needs it own is correct?

And also, will Ubuntu have any trouble accessing other HDD on my PC they might be formatted by NT or Fat 32 etc..

Thanks, looking forward to giving ubuntu a crack.

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up vote 0 down vote accepted

You can not partition or format a hard drive for Ubuntu from Windows. This has to be done from the partitioning tool that comes with the live CD.

We are able to partition the whole drive from this CD, including a partition formatted NTFS or FAT32 for access from Windows. Just choose "Something else" during the installation process.

But if you are unexperienced with Ubuntu, and to avoid data loss from accidentally partitioning a drive or partition where you keep your data it is advisable to:

  • make a backup of your important data before you install a new OS
  • let Ubuntu install on a free, unpartitioned space of your drive. Then the installer will automatically take care of proper partitions, and will only use up truly free space on your drive(s).
  • Don't proceed when you have the slightest doubt whether you had set the partitions correctly. Better ask someone first.

To obtain such a free, unpartitioned space just leave 500 GB unpartitioned when you go ahead to partition the new drive from Windows.

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You can create two partitions as you mentioned. You need not have to format it to Fat32 or NTFS.

Ubuntu will format the partition as Ext4 during installation. All you have to do is pointing to the correct partition using advanced option and mount it under"/"

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Ubuntu will automatically load/mount all the available drives in your system. No worries there wither :) – Koushik Feb 25 '13 at 10:57
ubuntu doesn't auto mount all partitions if fstab isn't modified. It gets mounted when clicked. – Web-E Feb 25 '13 at 11:03
Agree. But it shows the link to all your drives in Unity Bar. Gone are the days when you needed to modify the etc/fstab manually :) – Koushik Feb 26 '13 at 10:31

Ubuntu(and even other Linux-based distros) can read almost all file systems. So, to answer your second question first; no, ubuntu won't have trouble reading the other(perhaps the internal) HDD formatted as NTFS or FAT.

For your first question, you only need to keep a partition free(any format: NTFS, FAT, ext, or just free) of data to install Ubuntu. Remember: The partition on which you are going to install Ubuntu should not contain data useful to you.

You can format it during or before installation with any format as Ubuntu can format it with ext no matter what the previous format was. Also, since its a 2 TB HDD, I presume it has GPT, so you don't need to worry about the 4 primary partition problems related with MBR.

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+1 for mentioning GPT – Web-E Feb 25 '13 at 10:59
I think it is Master boot Record. – Billythebat Feb 28 '13 at 3:10

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