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I needed to split my hard disk into 5 partitions for installing Ubuntu 11.04. The first one (*) was for system reserved - 100mb, second (C) was the installation of Windows 7, third (D) was for my work files, fourth (E) was for my multimedia (pictures, music etc.) and the last one was for Ubuntu 11.04. After doing so, some warning appeared telling me something about "can't boot..." I don't remember (stupid of me), and after doing so, all partitions got simple volume and not primary partition, even where my operating system is. Now when I boot with Ubuntu CD, to install, when I want to format the partition I made just for Ubuntu, there is none of the previously made partitions for Ubuntu installation and swap space, just two partitions - the first 160gb and the second - 150gb. The system is booting correctly and working correctly but it is kind of weird, is there any way to change it to primary partition? I used EASEUS Partition Master Home edition to convert them safely, but the option isn't there to use!!! So I have two questions, first:

What happened with my partitions and is it worth converting them? What are the cons and pros about simple and primary partitions?

And the second question:

How to install Ubuntu 11.04 to another partition like I done so far ( but when I boot with the Ubuntu cd I burned) to recognize the free space or the recently made partitions, not only two like before (it recognized only two partition, one was C and the second was E )? - that is the main problem :P

I know this is long question (2 questions) but I'm really desperate to fix this two problems...

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1 Answer 1

Q1 - from [Administration][Disk Utility], Ubuntu should give you a view of what it knows about partitions, including partitions not presently mounted.
DON'T try to change the partition which is mounted as / Clicking around this screen, one may select and format unused partitions, create new partitions in unused space, or reformat a partition with a filesystem such as ext4 and (optionally) a mount point. I prefer to do something else with storage partitions; not mount them at all unless I need them for something that day.

I've observed some override during default installation of what I thought I asked Ubuntu 10.04 and 11.04 to do with partitions, also Edubuntu10.10 I am not sure why that happened. If your machine is for long term stable use then I'd prefer Ubuntu 10.04 because of its long term support and try out new stuff such as version 11.04 as a virtual machine (if your computer has the spare GB of RAM and spare 10GB of hard drive space for doing such trials).

When I installed Ubuntu 10.04 whose partition manager was not doing what I thought I had asked it to, I started again from scratch, prepared part of the disk by firing up an Ubuntu 9.10 (32bit) live CD, which I trust, and used [Administration][Disk Utility] to set up the master boot record, create partitions such as /boot, /home, / and SWAP and formated as ext4,ext4,ext4 and SWAP. Rebooting the live CD, and this time selecting 'install Ubuntu', subsequent option to 'custom' choose where to install has worked properly. At the time of writing, I have noticed 'LVM' formatting options in newver Ubuntu and Fedora versions which seem to be a distraction when setting up a standard home system.

Q2 How to get installation of Ubuntu into your choice of partitions When it offers a choice between standard or custom(advanced) partitioning, that is where it is meant to see all partitions on the hard drive. Expect numbering similar to sda for the first physical hard drive, sda1, sda2 .. for partitions which you might be more used to seeing labelled as C,D .. under Windows. It is best to recognise which is what from the sizes of them. It should give you choices at this stage to format partions. I avoid making changes to the partitioning here but might type or select the mount points for those partitions which I want to use.

If your 11.04 CD never sees your previously preparated partitions then reboot, select 'try Ubuntu without making changes to your computer', and see what you can see under [Administration][Disk Utility]. Running as a live CD in RAM, the whole hard drive is not mounted so is unlocked to formating tools, which can be convenient so long as you are not the type to accidently wipe a C: drive because it had been labelled 'hda1'. Recognise your partitions by size, and you'll be ok.

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