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I installed Ubuntu 13.04 alongside Windows 8 using the iso file from official website. In Ubuntu 12.04, I used wubi to install and then it was clear that Ubuntu was installed in Windows. I installed Ubuntu 13.04 without wubi and I could not figure out whether Ubuntu is installed in Windows or Windows resides in Ubuntu.

Following screenshots may give a hint.an image showing my disc partition In Windows, this 378GB disk was my C: Drive.

enter image description here

I have no idea where this SYSTEM came from.

Here comes the Ubuntu root directory. enter image description here

Is it that SYSTEM is now the head of both C: Drive and Ubuntu?

P.S: I asked this question here as having this confusion will definitely trouble people in upgrading windows or Ubuntu and when anything is problematic with Ubuntu, people come to this website.

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Did you install Ubuntu 13.04 using Wubi? or not. I cannot figure this out... –  Christian Oct 3 '13 at 14:29
The hell did i just read. –  blade19899 Oct 3 '13 at 14:35
if it was e preinstalled windows 8 follow this step by step! askubuntu.com/questions/221835/… | if not follow this if you want 12.04. Step by step! ubuntu.com/download/desktop/install-desktop-latest | for 13.04 follow these instructions step by step! ubuntu.com/download/desktop/install-desktop-long-term-support –  blade19899 Oct 3 '13 at 14:39
The system partition is made by Windows itself. It usually is no bigger then 100mb It stores boot files and such in it. –  blade19899 Oct 3 '13 at 14:42
one more thing wubi on newer hardware with windows 8 logo, or using uefi firmware are not supported. if you have windows 8 with newer hardware. a 64 bit version of Ubuntu is recommended. see:ubuntu.com/download/desktop/windows-installer –  blade19899 Oct 3 '13 at 14:46
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1 Answer

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Everything appears fine with your system. You installed Ubuntu alongside Windows and that's how they are: 2 (separate) operating systems side by side, with the option to choose one or the other when you boot. One is not inside of or controlling the other.

I think your question stems from the nature of Wubi, where Ubuntu appears to Windows as just another Windows program and is installed as a file within the Windows partition. Wubi does not work with 13.04 and the Wubi way is not the way a regular installation of Ubuntu works.

Here's the key part that I think will answer your question: An operating system when it is not running the computer is just another collection of files in a disk partition.

Windows cannot read the Linux file format, so you don't see any evidence of Ubuntu when browsing your C:\ drive in Windows. You can however see the existence of the Ubuntu partition from Disk Manager in the Administrative tools, if your version of Windows lets you access that.

Ubuntu, however, can read and mount the Windows partitions. System is the Windows created boot partition. You should leave it alone. The 378 GB partition is the C:\ drive. There's not enough info here to know what the other partition is, but it's likely a data partition D:\, or a Windows recovery partition. You may decide you don't need this partition and use it for something else, but be careful and research how your particular computer model is set up. You can usually find this info at the manufacturer's support site.

It's probably not a good idea to mount and open files on your C:\ drive from Ubuntu very often. You may want to make an NTFS formatted partition to share files between the two operating systems, or you could use an external USB stick or drive.

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This is mostly a good answer; however, SYSTEM doesn't look like an EFI System Partition (ESP) to me; ESPs have a directory called EFI, which holds subdirectories for each OS installed, such as EFI/ubuntu and EFI/Microsoft. The screen shot that nitish posted doesn't show an EFI directory in the SYSTEM partition. When Ubuntu installs in EFI mode, the ESP is mounted at /boot/efi, so either the ESP is mounted there or the computer is booting in BIOS mode. The SYSTEM partition is probably a Windows-specific boot partition. –  Rod Smith Oct 3 '13 at 17:14
Thanks for the clarification, @rod-smith. I had assumed there was a /boot/efi and intended the original statement as a shorthand. I edited the answer to reflect your general statement. –  chaskes Oct 3 '13 at 17:26
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