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I have a Lenovo G505s with Win8 installed on it. I would like to install Ubuntu 14.04 on it, and I've followed all the procedures to disable the secure boot and fast boot successfully.

The problem starts here:

  1. Once the installation starts, gparted doesn't recognize the Dynamic partitions of HDD.
  2. It shows the whole HDD as unknown.

I want to convert my HDD dynamic partition, which I made for Ubuntu, to a Basic Partition without changing the other partitions.

Is it possible to just change a single partition to basic from dynamic, without having to change the whole hard-disk?

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You cannot change just one partition - you have to change the whole drive. The whole drive is either a Dynamic Disk or Basic Disk.

To convert a Dynamic Disk to Basic you will need to use Windows. It cannot be done in Linux, because Linux can not access Dynamic Disks. See Converting dynamic to basic disk and MS Technet: Change a Dynamic Disk Back to a Basic Disk and this answer on Super User. For detailed instructions with different tools see this tutorial.

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    Linux can not access Dynamic Disks Yes it can, I'm looking at them right now. (I had to use ntfsfix, and now they are readable in Linux, but I still can't read them in Windows - which is why I ended up in this question.) – ANeves Sep 9 '16 at 19:29
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    afaik LInux may be able to mount an older LDM format data partition in an unsafe way (Linux won't maintain the LDM metadata so there is a possibility of corruption), however Linux can't create/edit/delete LDM partitions (as the question asked), and Win8 onwards defaults to Storage Spaces which uses a different (proprietary) format which can't be accessed at all. – bain Sep 12 '16 at 22:39
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Bain may well be correct, but the description of the Linux tool showing the disk as unpartitioned makes me think that something else may be going on. Specifically, I suspect that the disk may be using the Master Boot Record (MBR) partitioning system, but with leftover GUID Partition Table (GPT) data from a previous setup on the disk. This type of configuration is known to give the Ubuntu installer fits. If I'm right, the solution is to clear away the old GPT data. One easy way to do this is to use FixParts, as described here.

Before deciding what to do, I recommend posting the output of the following command, typed at an emergency Linux boot's command prompt:

sudo gdisk -l /dev/sda

If it tells you that it's found both MBR and GPT data and asks which to use, then my hypothesis is correct and you should use FixParts (or some other tool) to delete the old GPT data. If it doesn't present such a question, though, it could be that something else is going on -- maybe a simple Basic/Dynamic problem that's showing unusual symptoms, or maybe something else. Also, it's entirely possible that both issues are in play -- you could have leftover GPT data and a Basic/Dynamic problem!

  • I read your article on fixparts and the key note was: "Every logical partition requires at least one free sector immediately before its start sector. " Building on this, and combining it with testdisk, I can now convert Dynamic Disk to Basic. Proof: youtube.com/watch?v=zTwPch9acGc – Nehal J Wani Jan 15 '16 at 18:00
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From Linux you can't do this. Linux does not support dynamic disks.

Install Windows 8 on a 32GB or higher pendrive or external hard disk (google "how to make live Windows USB").

Boot Windows 8 from your pendrive in your laptop. Connect to the internet.

Then download AOMEI Dynamic Disk Converter Software from this link: http://www.disk-partition.com/features/convert-dynamic-disk-to-basic.html.

Then install that software. Using that software you can convert your whole hard disk easily into a basic disk without losing any data.

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You can change the disk from dynamic to basic using TestDisk, see this guide. I know Arch comes with testdisk, so I guess many other distros also have it.

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