I can't format my hard disk for Ubuntu installation. It has Fedora installed in it. I wonder how to unlock the locked partition to delete and format it, since I am stuck at installing Ubuntu. I am now using a livecd to do the task. No options are available for me to use.

Screenshot: enter image description here

  • have you considered deleting the partition from Fedora ? – Srinivas Gowda Nov 15 '12 at 13:03
  • I am trying to delete it, but it is locked. – owl Nov 15 '12 at 13:29
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    Force unmount the partition. Look into my answer below. – Srinivas Gowda Nov 15 '12 at 13:34

If it's an LVM partition, you will need to deactivate it using the command lvremove which will remove the lock.
Only then can you delete the partition using gparted.

Use lvscan to view the volume.

Use lvremove to remove it.

Check man pages man lvscan and man lvremove for details.

  • 4
    This was the solution for me! – Mike Turley Apr 11 '13 at 2:45
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    This is a very useful answer. Using these commands only deactivate lvm2 partitions which then means it is possible to delete the lvm2 partitions through gparted. Fancy having a go at updating your answer to provide a fully working and brilliant answer? – geezanansa Aug 24 '13 at 10:36
  • Didn't know about lvscan and lvremove. Worked great. Thank you! – wulftone Aug 24 '13 at 23:04
  • This should be the answer – kbuilds Dec 17 '13 at 0:45
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    if you're using gparted, it will show Deactive when you right-click on the LVM partition – Rudolf Olah May 16 '16 at 15:36

Right click on the swap partitions and select swapoff. This will unlock the extended partition and let you resize/move.


Open a Terminal on Ubuntu (live cd) and force unmount the partition.

sudo umount -f <name of your partition>

The name of your partition is probably something like /dev/sdb or /dev/sda2. Be careful to type the right file name here. You can use df to find the device file for a mounted partition.

  • unmount doesn't exist, you want umount. – Mike Turley Apr 11 '13 at 2:45
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    Using 13.04 liveDVD and gparted view->file system support shows lvm(2) is not supported. Using sudo umount /dev/sdaX confirms LVM partition is not mounted to beigin with. This answer is not useful. – geezanansa Aug 24 '13 at 10:18

My 'active distro' occupied another drive, I just wanted to get rid of the Fedora LVM - fedora doesn't play nice with other distro's destroyed my 'grub2' list and wouldn't allow any other distro to boot, so needed to 'get rid'

lvscan + lvremove as sudo worked a treat

$ sudo lvscan
  ACTIVE            '/dev/fedora_localhost/swap' [7.81 GiB] inherit
  ACTIVE            '/dev/fedora_localhost/home' [407.39 GiB] inherit
  ACTIVE            '/dev/fedora_localhost/root' [50.00 GiB] inherit
$ sudo lvremove /dev/fedora_localhost/swap
Do you really want to remove and DISCARD active logical volume swap? [y/n]: y
Logical volume "swap" successfully removed
$ sudo lvremove /dev/fedora_localhost/home
Do you really want to remove and DISCARD active logical volume home? [y/n]: y
Logical volume "home" successfully removed
$ sudo lvremove /dev/fedora_localhost/root
Do you really want to remove and DISCARD active logical volume root? [y/n]: y
Logical volume "root" successfully removed

Issue resolved ... thanks 'geezanansa'

  • It does not work in my case, i got the same msg every time: Failed to write metadata to /dev/sdc2 fd -1 and WARNING: Failed to write an MDA of VG fedora. and Failed to write VG fedora. Then the partition become INACTIVE. – deepcell Mar 12 '19 at 13:36

Open the Ubuntu Installer and click "Install Ubuntu", then continue untill you see "Erase disk and install Ubuntu". It will erase the entire disk and use all of it for installation. Ubuntu will automatically partition your disk and proceed with installation. For more information about installing Ubuntu, you can visit this page. You don't need to format the hard disk before you install Ubuntu, the installer does it automaticaly.

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