I bought a Dell XPS13 with Ubuntu 12.04 pre-installed. I want to reformat and repartition the machine, but as I'm far from being a Linux guru. I'm afraid that I'll erase something important that could have been preinstalled by Dell.

On the disk, there are 3 partitions:

  • /dev/sda1 - Ext4 Linux bootable 248GB - which is the system+user partition, I guess.
  • /dev/sda2 - Extended (?) of 8GB - What is this partition about?
  • /dev/sda5 - Linux Swap of 8GB - which is for RAM and needs to be reconduct (why only 1xRAM and not 2?)

Do I have to care about /dev/sda2?
Can I reformat to create a partition for /home without losing anything important (except user data of course)?


That is the standard Ubuntu partition Layout, there is no hidden restore partition like you can get with Windows systems. You are safe to repartition after backing your data up.

You can easily create root, home and swap partitions from the Ubuntu installer, just selected the advanced options, official help:



You don't need to keep any pre-existing dell partition if you're not using windows, so feel free to use the entire disk.

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