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Ubuntu, Windows, and the Partitioned Hard Drive

post #1 of 12
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At the moment there are really only two reasons for me to run Windows on my Thinkpad. I recently partitioned a tiny amount of space to Ubuntu 10.10 to give it a try and see if it might suit my daily needs and so far it has passed the test, although being a linux nooby, I am still having trouble with a few things, but not to worry, I will figure them out.

In any case, I wanted to backup all of my data on my lappy's hard drive and format it, then partition it into two boot partitions -- one for linux, one for windows -- and then partition the remainder into a data/media drive to be shared with the two boot partitions.

My question is -- you'll have to excuse my ignorance -- what file system should the data partition be in? I'd like to use ext4, but will windows be able to recognise the files if it's formatted as such? If not, would there be a downside to formatting it as ntsc?

And the bonus questions! Does anyone know of a way to get divx/xvid running in firefox for linux? I have VLC, but I was wondering if there is a way to watch web streams via divx? My other questions is, is there any software -- similar to Thinkvantage -- in which tells the AC to charge the battery at a certain percentage and then to stop charging at another? I like to keep my battery nice and healthy, I'd like to avoid overcharging it.


Thank you kindly in advance!
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post #2 of 12
Why not just reinstall Windows, then install Ubuntu.
You'll be able to access your Windows files within Ubuntu.
I think there is a program that will allow you to access your Ubuntu files within Windows.
post #3 of 12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbudden View Post
Why not just reinstall Windows, then install Ubuntu.
You'll be able to access your Windows files within Ubuntu.
I think there is a program that will allow you to access your Ubuntu files within Windows.
It is better for the hard drive's health to have data and OS/programs separate. For optimal health and performance, one would have one hard drive as a boot/program drive, while storing files on another drive. Also -- in windows' case -- it won't get bogged down and fragmented as easily.

So speed and drive health are the reasons.
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post #4 of 12
Im not sure if its the best method but on my daily laptop I have a ntfs partition for windows with linux on ext4 and then a 100g fat32 storage.
Edited by Tw34k - 3/30/11 at 8:32pm
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post #5 of 12
Just make your Windows and data partitions NTFS, and Ubuntu partition in ext4. Ubuntu can read/write in ntfs, it's Windows that doesn't really like ext4.
post #6 of 12
Linux can access anything winows is limited to fat or ntfs. You could make an ntfs partition with anything you need for both os as a kind of shared partition. Just set it to automount in youe fstab. Ext4 is generally best for linux itself.
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post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by dodger.blue View Post
At the moment there are really only two reasons for me to run Windows on my Thinkpad. I recently partitioned a tiny amount of space to Ubuntu 10.10 to give it a try and see if it might suit my daily needs and so far it has passed the test, although being a linux nooby, I am still having trouble with a few things, but not to worry, I will figure them out.

In any case, I wanted to backup all of my data on my lappy's hard drive and format it, then partition it into two boot partitions -- one for linux, one for windows -- and then partition the remainder into a data/media drive to be shared with the two boot partitions.

My question is -- you'll have to excuse my ignorance -- what file system should the data partition be in? I'd like to use ext4, but will windows be able to recognise the files if it's formatted as such? If not, would there be a downside to formatting it as ntsc?

And the bonus questions! Does anyone know of a way to get divx/xvid running in firefox for linux? I have VLC, but I was wondering if there is a way to watch web streams via divx? My other questions is, is there any software -- similar to Thinkvantage -- in which tells the AC to charge the battery at a certain percentage and then to stop charging at another? I like to keep my battery nice and healthy, I'd like to avoid overcharging it.


Thank you kindly in advance!
Here is what I would do:

Partition drive and leave at least 10GB for Ubuntu (UBuntu only really needs 4). So you will have 2 partitions. you can do this via Ubuntu LiveCD and use the disk utility. DO NOT USE EXTENDED PARTITONS! You go to delete a partition and it will cause all kinds of troubles and misalignment issues.

Next INSTALL WINDOWS FIRST on the bigger partition
Then install ubuntu on the little partition

Ubuntu will automagically add windows to GRUB so you won't have to worry. Your system is now sucessfully dual booted.

But if you want to be able to see your stuff from windows, I would recommend this:

Create 3 parititons. 1 big one, and 2 small ones (1 that is 4Gb for ubuntu itself, and another that is as big as you want (give 10GB so you can have some space ot play with or more if you want).

Install windows on the big partition.

Then go install ubuntu, but select manual when you get to the hard drive parittion area.

Select the 4Gb partition and format it to EXT4 and give it the lable /

The other, format to something windows can read (Fat32, NTFS, anything really as long as windows can read it) and call it lable it /home and continue with the install.


Now you can see your nice pretty home director in windows and have access to all your stuff (I think).


correct me if i am wrong.

But Linux can read/write NTFS/FAT32/FAT just fine (and really any other file system as long as it is supported or have have required libraries and whatnot for it to support it). Windows.... hates life, the universe, itself, and everything else and only likes FAT32, NTFS, etc.

IT HATES EXT4. I have tired and cannot find anything to read EXT4 from windows.
Edited by Lord Xeb - 3/30/11 at 8:46pm
 
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post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by dodger.blue View Post
In any case, I wanted to backup all of my data on my lappy's hard drive and format it, then partition it into two boot partitions -- one for linux, one for windows -- and then partition the remainder into a data/media drive to be shared with the two boot partitions.
If you're installing Windows Vista or Windows 7, you will have to ensure that the system DOES NOT create a "System Reserved" partition (it's not usually necessary on Windows unless you plan to use BitLocker). Otherwise you will not have enough partitions available to maintain a separate data partition. This is because Linux wants its own "System Reserved" (known as /boot) partition, which would leave you with all four primary partitions used and no slots left for another partition. Someone who is more familiar with Windows installation can advise further here.

If you must have the Windows System Reserved partition, then you will not be able to have a separate data partition as you've proposed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dodger.blue View Post
My question is -- you'll have to excuse my ignorance -- what file system should the data partition be in? I'd like to use ext4, but will windows be able to recognise the files if it's formatted as such? If not, would there be a downside to formatting it as ntsc?
I think you mean NTFS, and NTFS is just fine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dodger.blue View Post
And the bonus questions! Does anyone know of a way to get divx/xvid running in firefox for linux? I have VLC, but I was wondering if there is a way to watch web streams via divx? My other questions is, is there any software -- similar to Thinkvantage -- in which tells the AC to charge the battery at a certain percentage and then to stop charging at another? I like to keep my battery nice and healthy, I'd like to avoid overcharging it.
Media codecs and such is covered in full in my Linux Software Guide in my sig.

As for Thinkvantage Power Manager/Battery MaxiMiser, I don't think that's ever been ported to Linux, though Linux is perfectly capable of reporting battery degradation and managing system power usage. I don't think there's anything that will just tell it to stop charging the battery; the hardware is supposed to do this automatically.

You can probably find more info on ThinkWiki.
Edited by error10 - 3/30/11 at 9:07pm
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post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by error10 View Post
I think you mean NTFS, and NTFS is just fine.
Oh good God, you're right I meant NTFS And no, I've no intention of using bit locker, in fact I'd just need windows to run one program, it would just be nice to have access to music -- or whatever other files I might need on the fly -- whilst running that program.

In any case, you've all been quite helpful, thank you!
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post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by dodger.blue View Post
Oh good God, you're right I meant NTFS And no, I've no intention of using bit locker, in fact I'd just need windows to run one program, it would just be nice to have access to music -- or whatever other files I might need on the fly -- whilst running that program.

In any case, you've all been quite helpful, thank you!
If you just need to run one Windows program, try running it in Wine, or in a virtual machine instead. That would completely eliminate the need for a Windows partition entirely.
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