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currently my file system is dual boot between windows 7 and ubuntu 16.04. First I wanted to allocate space between the two operating systems, but now i decided it is best to just erase windows in favor of ubuntu. As far as I know, I have two options.

  1. Boot into windows, boot from a brand new ubuntu usb stick, select "Replace xxx with ubuntu" (what stands in xxx? windows7/ubuntu?) The question is whether I have to deinstall the old ubuntu first or if the installer is capable of obliterating all partitions from the entire disk space and build a brand new system.

  2. Remove windows 7 from the dual boot setup and allocate disk space to ubuntu. I would prefer that option as my ubuntu system and all the configurations would remain but am afraid of not being able to manage possible problems that might occur. Also it seems problematic that the free disk space would be left from my partition.

What is the easiest and safest way for someone who does not know anything about partitioning aside from pulling sliders in the windows menu?

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If you completely want to remove Windows, then I would recommend using GParted. It is a very comprehensive partitioning tool.

Here are the steps I would take:

  • Take a backup of all files you don't want to lose
  • Boot from your bootable ubuntu usb
  • Try to only have your OS-drive be attached (e.g. no extra usb or external hdd), to minimise chance to do something wrong
  • Open GParted, let it scan your disks
  • Remove the windows partition(s), this can be done by selecting the partition and clicking the trashcan in the top bar
  • Resize the extended partition that contains the main ext4 file system and the swap partition so it fills the entire disk. This can be done by right-clicking on the partition and choosing the resize/move tool
  • Move the swap partition to the end, also done with the resize/move-tool. At this point, there may be a warning telling you that moving partitions may cause your OS to fail to boot. Should your system fail to boot after the fact, take a look at this thread.
  • enlarge the main file system (ext4 partition) to fill the entire extended partition (the box around the ext4 and swap partitions)
  • Apply the operations via the top bar

The first step is the most important one, do not try to skip it

It might take a couple of hours to move partitions, depending on the size of the partition. To be clear, this will destroy your windows-partition, you will lose all files from this partition.

If you have any more questions, ask them in the comments.

  • I will try this. Luckily, I do not care about the remaining files. Will then report if it worked, thanks. – EE-Student Mar 25 '17 at 11:02
  • I swapped off the linux-swap partition. Then I followed the steps. Now this warning occurs after enlarging the main file system (ext4) to fill the entire partition. Is it safe to apply the changes? – EE-Student Mar 25 '17 at 12:42
  • Final changes. I decided to keep windows as 200gb more for ubuntu is more than enough and this way I can still use Powerpoint if needed. Does everything look good? I wont start until someone assures me I dont run into huge trouble with this. :D – EE-Student Mar 25 '17 at 12:55
  • Thanks for your feedback, I will edit my answer to include the warning. – Peetah Mar 25 '17 at 18:10
  • @EE-Student if you take a screenshot in the future of gparted, drag the bottom window up a bit, not all of your actions were visible. I'm happy I could help you tough! – Peetah Mar 25 '17 at 18:21

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