I've got a dual-booting laptop - Windows 7 & Linux Mint 13 - and I want to get rid of Mint, keep Windows 7 and install Ubuntu 12.04.

Also, I want to have a separate home partition (I've only got one disk drive) so that if I want to go back to Mint (or any other distro) then I won't have to overwrite my home folder again.

Anyone tell me - in newbie friendly terms - how to do that?


First things first, make sure you have all your files backed up to a different device.

When installing Ubuntu,you'll be prompted to choose your installation type. Select "Something else". Select Install Method

This will take you to the Gparted partition editor.
You should see one or more NTFS partitions. That is (these are) your Windows partition(s). Then you should see an ext3 or ext4 partition. That will be where your LinuxMint is currently installed.
Starting out From your description you want to overwrite your Mint partition and add a separate /home partition.

To do this, Double click your Mint partition (/dev/sda5 in this example). This will allow you to edit the partition. Highlight_ext4

Resize this partition. Make sure it is at least 4GB. IN this example I chose 6GB. To figure how many MB you need, Multiply 1024 by the number of GB. (example: 1024 x 6GB = 6144MB)
Select Format partition. Later when you apply these settings All Data will be lost!!!
You'll want to set the mount point to /.
Resize ext4

When you select "Continue" a Warning will pop up. Please understand that this will write to disk. And you could lose data on the edited partition.Write to Disk Warning

This should leave you an new grey "Free space".
New Freespace

Double click on "Freespace", to "Create New Partition". In the dialog box that pops up select ext4 and set the mount point as /home. Create New

Your final out come should look similar to this.
Final Result

Continue with the installation.

For more information on using Gparted checkout dedoimedo.com

  • Still downloading the iso. I may replace these images if the process looks significantly different. – Argusvision Oct 18 '12 at 20:38
  • Hi Argusvision, Thanks for the detailed reply. I'll give it a go. If I want to get rid of ubuntu and install mint or whatever in the future, would I just have to install the distro into the 4g partition and that would leave my home folder intact? – gypmaster Oct 18 '12 at 21:21
  • Yes, thats exactly right. – Argusvision Oct 18 '12 at 21:47
  • ok, I've had a look using gparted and I'm a little confused as I don't know what my mint partition is. Here's what I see using gparted: 3 linux partitions 1 - /dev/sda4 extended, 2 - /dev/sda5 ext4, 3 - /dev/sda6 linux-swap ... not sure which of those is my mint partition – gypmaster Oct 19 '12 at 17:07
  • /dev/sda5 that is formatted as ext4 is the mint partition. Leave the swap just as it is. – Argusvision Oct 19 '12 at 21:14

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