Take a look at my GParted screenshot below:

My GParted screenshot

As you can see my sda3 primary partition is separated by the extended partition that contains my / and swap logical partitions.

I'd like to move sda3 to be adjacent with unallocated to extend it. After some reading, the only potential issue I can find has something to do with /boot, which is located in sda1 so it shouldn't be a problem (right?)!

My question is: Is it safe? Any issues I need to be worried about? More importantly: can anyone point me in the right direction? Maybe pointers/step-by-step instructions?

Thanks in advance!

PS: I know my partitioning is a little bit weird (newbie here). I'm planning on shrinking root and merging it with sda3 :)

1 Answer 1


Considering the fact that your root (/) partition (sda5) is too large and you also intend to reduce its size I think the best method to follow is this:

  1. Increase the size of your Extended Partition (sda4) to the right, i.e. taking in the free space at the end.
  2. Move your swap partition (sda6) to the right (you can make it 4GB as well)
  3. Move your root (/) partition (sda5) to the right and reduce its size to 20-30 GB.
  4. Reduce the size of your Extended Partition (sda4) from the left, leaving a large free space before it.
  5. Finally increase the size of your data partition (sda3) to the right, taking in the whole free space.

You can do this using GParted on a live CD/DVD/USB and you might also need to unmount your swap partition as it will probably be mounted automatically.

Safety? Nothing and nobody is 100% safe ;-)

Normally, all these 5 steps (simply moving and re-sizing partitions) should go well without any problems and your system should be completely unaffected as long as you don't attempt to delete/create partitions.

But, just in case, keep your fingers crossed ;-)

Possible precautions:

  1. Make a backup of your disk or partitions, for example using Clonezilla, Parted Magic, Redo, etc.
  2. Check if your system is intact after performing each step.
  • Thanks for this! I'll do that when I have a lot of time! Is there a guide to moving partitions using GParted? I find the UI a little confusing.
    – oaskamay
    Feb 28, 2013 at 15:05
  • Help | Contents menu is the only guide I know. Its GUI becomes clearer as you get used to it though.
    – Sadi
    Feb 28, 2013 at 15:09
  • Thanks for your tip again. Finally able to find the time to do this :) went really smooth! Took around 20 minutes (surprisingly, since most people online say moving 5GB filesystems around can take hours). The only issue was after rebooting back into HDD, my wireless adapter couldn't associate with the driver. Re-installing the driver fixed it. I'm just curious as to why this could've happened. Gonna post a question about it soon :) again thanks! My partitioning isn't retarded anymore!
    – oaskamay
    Mar 1, 2013 at 19:31
  • This wireless driver problem is weird, as just an experienced user all I know is that such weird things do happen from time to time even when you haven't done anything ;-) Hence the need to make backups...
    – Sadi
    Mar 1, 2013 at 21:08

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