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I am dual booting Ubuntu 16.10 and Windows 10 with a 750GB HDD and have found an extra Linux partition of a significant size and don't know how it got there or whether I can delete it.

The results of df -h before mounting the partition are:

Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
udev            3.9G     0  3.9G   0% /dev
tmpfs           791M  9.6M  781M   2% /run
/dev/sda6       203G   82G  112G  43% /
tmpfs           3.9G   19M  3.9G   1% /dev/shm
tmpfs           5.0M  4.0K  5.0M   1% /run/lock
tmpfs           3.9G     0  3.9G   0% /sys/fs/cgroup
/dev/sda2        96M   59M   38M  61% /boot/efi
tmpfs           791M   48K  791M   1% /run/user/1000

And after mounting the partition:

Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
udev            3.9G     0  3.9G   0% /dev
tmpfs           791M  9.6M  781M   2% /run
/dev/sda6       203G   82G  112G  43% /
tmpfs           3.9G   21M  3.9G   1% /dev/shm
tmpfs           5.0M  4.0K  5.0M   1% /run/lock
tmpfs           3.9G     0  3.9G   0% /sys/fs/cgroup
/dev/sda2        96M   59M   38M  61% /boot/efi
tmpfs           791M   48K  791M   1% /run/user/1000
/dev/sda8       139G   51G   81G  39% /media/abigail/66bb278d-aa26-4a88-b7c0-1c5c9580b5c3

After mounting the Windows partition:

Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
udev            3.9G     0  3.9G   0% /dev
tmpfs           791M  9.6M  781M   2% /run
/dev/sda6       203G   82G  112G  43% /
tmpfs           3.9G   25M  3.9G   1% /dev/shm
tmpfs           5.0M  4.0K  5.0M   1% /run/lock
tmpfs           3.9G     0  3.9G   0% /sys/fs/cgroup
/dev/sda2        96M   59M   38M  61% /boot/efi
tmpfs           791M   52K  791M   1% /run/user/1000
/dev/sda8       139G   51G   81G  39% /media/abigail/66bb278d-aa26-4a88-b7c0-1c5c9580b5c3
/dev/sda4       333G  220G  114G  66% /media/abigail/Windows 10

Before mounting the partition the drive available to me in Ubuntu is 151GB but this doesn't correspond to the size of the mounted partition. The disks utility says that sda6 is 221GB but df -h says it is 203GB.

After mounting sda8 I can access it through the GUI and terminal and it has the same home username and the only data inside the home folder are two files called README.txt and Access-Your-Private-Data.desktop which are both empty.

What is going on here? Can I delete sda8 and recover this space or is it a necessary partition?

  • It looks like an old /home. A leftover from a previous installation with a separated /home, perhaps? – user589808 Feb 11 '17 at 21:06
  • Ah that is probably it! I had to reinstall Ubuntu a little while ago. Would you say that it is safe to delete it? – Vermox Feb 11 '17 at 21:29
  • It's as much safe as messing with partitions can be. That said, any partition not needed for the OS can be safely deleted. How to use the now unallocated space is a different question altogether. It depends on its location. If you intend to add it to an existent partition (extend) and that space is after the said partition it's easy and fast but if before then you'd need to move the partition and that increases the risks of data loss. Of course, you should have backups anyway. – user589808 Feb 11 '17 at 21:54
  • did you use any partition to share with windows ? check if that partition is visible in windows partition manager and if you can use it in windows too. if its unvisible in windows then remove it , recover that space and check fstab if it has it to delete it from there too. – Pavlos Theodorou Feb 11 '17 at 23:46

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