The gnome disk utility shows a partition with 3.1 GB is linux swap with unknown content. In a terminal running free command total swap shows 0. What does this mean?

I don't need any swap space, so can I format this partition to ntfs or ext4 safely (without disturbing the system)?

I have encrypted /home. I have 3 GB RAM and I don't have to run any heavy application in Ubuntu so I don't need swap.

During installation, I allocated 13 GB to Ubuntu of which only 1.5 GB is left. .In Gnome disk utility it is showing 3.1 GB is linux swap but in gparted it is not recognized as linux swap (it just says unknown). So I want to just format it.

My question is: does deleting or formatting that partition cause any error? (If yes, then I will drop this option and increase my partition size instead.)

  • Did you encrypt /home? If so you will not see swap in many tools as it is just encrypted space. – oldfred May 17 '14 at 4:11
  • do you have plenty of ram ? why you say you not need it ? are you really in need of 3.1 GB of space ? I am asking out of curiosity with honest intentions . – billybadass May 17 '14 at 4:34
  • I formatted the drive via Gparted to ntfs. It created a new drive with that space (3GB) available. No idea what was that unknown space. But no errors and data loss. Rebooted safely. – Shadaf May 18 '14 at 1:49
  • Now i merged my ubuntu \ and the above 3 GB partition to get my home folder of 8.5 GB total space.YE!! Did it through gparted (via booting with bootable usb stick). – Shadaf May 18 '14 at 3:02

If you don't want swap anymore then swapoff the swap partition through gparted and then format it to ext4 or ntfs(whatever you want) for storing your datas.

For mine, the output of the free command is,

          total           used       free
Swap:     10501116          0      10501116

Which means, the total size of my swap partition is 10 GB, from that 0 space was used.


It's recommended to have the swap partition, anyway if you want to give it the correct format you can do it from shell commands with mkswap /dev/sdax where a stands for your disk and x stand for the partition number.

An easy way to turn of your swap partition is swapoff.

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