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So I just finished installing Ubuntu (13.10) alongside Windows 7 (on the same hard drive). However, I ran into a small problem when I was installing that had to do with the partition sizes. I wanted my partitions to look like this:

    /dev/sda1 (Windows Reserved Partition)
    /dev/sda2 (Windows Partition C:)
    /dev/sda3 (Ubuntu SWAP)
    /dev/sda4 (Ubuntu ROOT)
    /dev/sda5 (Ubunutu (HOME)

But unfortunately, I was unable to make more than 2 more partitions due to "unusable space" which I figured out was due to not being able to have more than 4 partitions. So now I have:

    /dev/sda1 (Windows Reserved Partition)
    /dev/sda2 (Windows Partition C:)
    /dev/sda3 (Ubuntu SWAP)
    /dev/sda4 (Ubuntu ROOT)

Is there any way to go about fixing this or should I not be worried about this kind of thing? Sorry, I'm pretty new to Linux in general.


After doing sudo parted -i, this is what I get:

Model: ATA WDC WD5000BPVT-2 (scsi)
Disk /dev/sda: 500GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/4096B
Partition Table: msdos

Number  Start   End    Size    Type     File system     Flags
 1      1049kB  106MB  105MB   primary  ntfs            boot
 2      106MB   395GB  395GB   primary  ntfs
 3      395GB   397GB  2000MB  primary  linux-swap(v1)
 4      397GB   500GB  103GB   primary  ext4
share|improve this question

The restriction to 4 primary partitions is not specifically a Linux thing but bound to the used MBR partitioning scheme in general. To overcome this limitation, extended partitions was invented.

So what you actually want is this:

    /dev/sda1 (Windows Reserved Partition)
    /dev/sda2 (Windows Partition C:)
    /dev/sda3 (Ubuntu SWAP)
    /dev/sda4                       <- Extended partition
        /dev/sda5 (Ubuntu ROOT)     <- Logical  partition
        /dev/sda6 (Ubunutu (HOME))  <- Logical  partition

Some good documentation is found here:

share|improve this answer
Would I need to uninstall and then reinstall Ubuntu to get that directory structure or should I stick with the one I have already? – SlashTag Nov 14 '13 at 21:07
It is not a directory structure but a partition table, and yes it is in your case VERY advisable to uninstall, repartition and reinstall. Do follow the advice to place GRUB in the masterbootrecord of /dev/sda. – thom Nov 14 '13 at 22:57

You probably need to better understand the difference between primary, extended, and logical partitions. With that knowledge, you'll be able to convert one or more of your existing partitions into logical partitions and add more of the latter type. I recommend you read the following:

There are plenty more references on the Web; try Googling for more information.

One caveat: The distinction between primary, extended, and logical partitions is unique to the old Master Boot Record (MBR) partitioning system. Newer computers use the GUID Partition Table (GPT) instead. GPT supports up to 128 partitions by default, with no equivalent to the MBR primary/extended/logical distinction. The symptoms you report suggest that you're using MBR, but if you're using GPT, you won't be able to create extended or logical partitions, and whatever your problem is, it has a more obscure cause. If you think this is the case, you'll need to post back with more details, such as the output of the sudo parted -l command, typed in a Terminal window.

share|improve this answer
Okay, I added the details that you recommended I added. – SlashTag Nov 14 '13 at 16:49
parted indicates you've definitely got an MBR partition table, so please read the four pages I've referenced. That should give you enough information to fix your problem. – Rod Smith Nov 14 '13 at 16:50

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