I am new to Virtual Technologies and want to install Linux Ubuntu distribution for myself for educational purposes. I have downloaded VMWare Workstation Player and Ubuntu .iso file from their website. My PC runs on Windows 10(this is the only OS of the PC). While installing Ubuntu it asks for the installation type, and I am a little bit confused.

If I choose 'Erase disk and install Ubuntu, will my PC's all my hard drive be formatted, including files stored in the Windows OS, which is not a VM, or VMs see only the storage allocated for themselves?

If I create new partitions via 'Something else' option, will it overwrite my C: and D: disks on Windows OS?

Thanks for your time!

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  • 2
    Yes.. Erase Disk means you are giving permission to erase your complete disk. – PRATAP Nov 19 '18 at 11:22
  • Thanks. So how can I give a special partition to Ubuntu? Can I create it on Windows and later give it to Ubuntu? @PRATAP – ElGrig Nov 19 '18 at 11:25
  • Yes that's the usual way. Create a partition while you are on windows and then use it via something else screen.. While I started Ubuntu in 2017 I lost all my data due to something else screen with lack of experience. – PRATAP Nov 19 '18 at 11:29
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    I think you guys misunderstood her question, when creating a new disk via vmware tools a 20 gb disk space is allotted . So when you run erase disk and install ubuntu , it only means that 20 gb allotted out of your C,D drive etc that is asked to be erased. This is done so that new filesystem can be mounted on that partition. Since the OP is running Windows 10 and is allotting 20 GB out 100 GB disk space is C , that does mean that 20GB of the disk space will be used however remaining 80GB of area will have NO impact whatsoever. Only thing you have to care for is : in that 20GB partition if y – swapedoc Nov 19 '18 at 12:39
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    When you create a virtual machine with a virtual disk, you can do 'anything you want' with that virtual disk (running a guest operating system) without any damage to the host operating system and its file system. – sudodus Nov 19 '18 at 14:16

I think your question comes in two sets... So I will answer as such:

  • Yes... If you choose "Erase disk and install Ubuntu" your whole hard drive will be formatted. "Erase disk and install Ubuntu" means you are authorizing the setup to erase your hard drive completely.
  • It is good to create a partition while you are on Windows OS, and then make use of it through the "Something else" option.

I hope this helps you solve your problem.

  • Yes it helps a lot, thanks. The problem is, I created and initialized 20GB HDD partition on Windows, intended for Linux, but when I choose 'Something else' option it does not appear there(is not visible). All other drives are not visible too. What I should do then? – ElGrig Nov 19 '18 at 12:27
  • @EleonoraGrigoryan what do you see when you choose "Use LVM with the new Ubuntu installation"? Just to know something... – Yufenyuy Veyeh Dider Nov 19 '18 at 13:36
  • @EleonoraGrigoryan do you know what kind of hard drive is in the computer? SSD? SATA? NVMe? it might be relevant for the question, as Ubuntu has historically had some problems with NVMe / M.2 SSDs. – Thomas Ward Nov 19 '18 at 14:22
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    Regarding 1: this is true for an install to DISK. An install with a VM is inside a FILE. There is no c: d: or other operating system inside a VM besides the one you install. – Rinzwind Nov 19 '18 at 15:12

If you are installing Ubuntu on a Virtual Machine, only the drives that are components of the virtual machine can be installed to. You can safely check by selecting the "Something Else" option with the installer. Here's an example in Virtualbox:

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As you can see from the size and labeling the disk it's considering is most certainly too small to be an actual drive in my machine. It's a good idea to check the sizes of drives and partitions on your system and be familiar with them to avoid any mistakes. The size will be equivalent to the size you chose when you created the disk file (virtual disk) that the Virtual Machine actually uses.

Another indication that you are installing to a disk file and not a physical drive is that the installer is not providing the option to install alongside your host OS (Windows) as the VM doesn't see it.

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