I am planning to install Ubuntu for the first time and I'd like some advice on partitioning. I am going to install Ubuntu 12.04 and Windows 7 64-bit.

  • I have a 1TB hard disk, 8GB RAM.
  • I'd like to have a big partition NTFS to share data between the two operating systems.
  • I often use a lot of (big) apps. My Windows partition (C:) will need about 150GB.

What partition size should I dedicate for root and home?

  • / (??? -> 20GB?)
  • /home (??? -> 20GB?)
  • /swap (16GB)
  • Windows (150GB)
  • ShareDriver (NTFS Max Left Space)

If I install and use a lot of apps, will 20GB be too small for root and /home? Might it become filled up over time?

I've never used Ubuntu, so I have no idea what amounts are reasonable for my usage.

  • 1
    beware of sharing a file system between Operating systems, and hibernating. Also consider using VirtualBox instead of dual boot. Jul 16, 2012 at 13:44
  • Visual Studio + Photoshop are too heavy on a virtual machine => Virtual Box cannot replace the real one with dual boot.
    – Hiep
    Mar 5, 2013 at 15:11

4 Answers 4


It's difficult to know these things in advance, of course, so even with the best planning you may need to make adjustments later. However, I'd recommend the following:

You won't likely need a swap partition larger than 8 GB. You have room for it and it won't hurt, but it doesn't make much sense, either, so if I were you I'd keep /swap at 8 GB.

I've had my root partition at 30 GB for about a year, and I'm still using less than 10 GB of it. You might install larger programs than I do, so give yourself a buffer: I'd recommend 20 - 30 GB.

As for the /home partition, that's where you'll store your data and files, including pictures, videos, projects, etc., whatever sorts of things you store and keep. I don't what sorts of things you keep, but in my case my pictures take up perhaps the largest share. Even so, having given myself lots of room (about 300 GB for /home), I have used only about 50 GB. You'll have to decide for yourself, but since you'll use a large NTFS partition to share data with Windows, you can probably get away with 30 - 60 GB for /home, with the knowledge that you might make adjustments later.

As far as space for Windows and its apps, etc., if you think you need 150 GB then that sounds fine. And the rest NTFS to share? That's fine, too. (Eventually you might want to revise that, but it's certainly fine at the beginning.)

You didn't say whether or not you already have Windows installed on the drive, but I assume you do. Windows can sometimes get finicky when being resized. I would recommend resizing your Windows partition first from within Windows itself using the Windows administrative tools, and then you can create the Ubuntu partitions as you install it.


the root can be ~50GB and for win 7 100GB is enough. You can always change this after installing the os you need


I've never needed more than 10GB for my root. I install a lot of packages too. To be sure you can give it 15-20gb. Windows 7 with a few applications needs 60-70gb. If you want to install a little more give it 150gb. You said you need this much anyway ;-) For games you'll eventually need a lot more. /home will be for all your personal files so it depends on how much you have. It also stores the properties of applications but that really isn't much. Even 1gb should be enough for those. A rule for swap is twice the RAM size so 16gb are good. If you want to use suspend to disk you need at last as much as you have RAM because it is stored in the swap partition. So for that 8gb will be enough too.

  • 2x RAM is obselete, 1x RAM is more than enough and even then its just to support hibernation (really, you shouldn't be using swap much)
    – mathepic
    Jul 14, 2013 at 19:37

If you want to make partition of the hard disk... then follow instructions given below....

  1. In Windows 8, on your desktop, right click on computer icon.
  2. Then, click on 'Manage' so it will open your computer management tab.
  3. Click on 'Disk Management' now you will see two disks available there.
  4. Right click on (c:) drive and click on 'Shrink Volume' now you will see the new tab 'shrink C:'
  5. There all the volumes given in MB. If you want to shrink 250GB then put 250000 into 'Enter the amount of space to shrink in MB' box then click on shrink button.
  6. After that, you will see your new disk with available space inside the black 'unallocated' box. This available disk space is not usable now.
  7. Right click on that black box and click on 'New Simple Volume' button. now you will see 'New Simple Volume Wizard' tab.
  8. Click on 'Next' again click next now assign the drive letter as you want (the letters C & D are used already so these letters are not available there) and click on next button
  9. Now, in the new tab in 'File System' box make it 'NTFS' and in 'Volume Label' box put name of the disk you want to name that disk(eg. hard disk) and click on next
  10. Now you see your new disk created successfully. Now enjoy new disk with new space.

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