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Installing Linux Mint Alongside Windows in a seperate partition


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#1 lime237

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 05:45 PM

Hello,
I am trying to install Linux Mint in its own partition in a way that enables me to dual boot it with my existing Windows installation. However, I do not want to go through the "install inside Windows" option that mint4win (which I guess is the Linux mint version of Wubi) gives me, since this option does not allow me to hibernate the computer if operating Linux Mint. Is there a way to create a separate partition which I can install Linux mint on, while being able to access files on my Windows partition from the Linux mint partition? i need to be able to access files in Windows partition from Linux Mint. What would be the best step by step way of making this happen?
Thanks in advance for your help! :)

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#2 MadDawg

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 06:23 PM

The Linux Mint install wizard allows you to non-destructively shrink the Windows partition so there is room to install Mint. Although I've done this several times without any issues, I recommend defragging the Windows partition and, if possible, backing it up entirely.

This video is a little old, but it should be useful nonetheless:
A penguin broke my windows with a half-eaten apple!

#3 lime237

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 06:44 PM

Thanks for your reply! Would I be able to access the files on my Windows partition while on Linux Mint? If so, how? For example, I do not want to have to copy all of my music onto this other partition just to be able to play music while on Linux Mint...

#4 MadDawg

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 06:56 PM

Yes, you can access the Windows partition from Mint; this is done by simply double-clicking the drive icon. You can open the files without having to copy them to the other partition.
A penguin broke my windows with a half-eaten apple!

#5 lime237

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 07:10 PM

Great! What is the recommended partition size for the Linux Mint partition? I will not really be storing any personal data on it, just programs.

#6 MadDawg

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 09:56 PM

15-10GB should be comfortable, but I'd go up to at least 20-30GB for breathing room.
A penguin broke my windows with a half-eaten apple!

#7 lime237

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 10:06 PM

Ok and if I need to remove Linux Mint in the future and restore the hard drive to how it is now with just one partition, how do I do that?

#8 MadDawg

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Posted 10 January 2011 - 10:24 PM

I haven't used the Linux Mint disc for a while, so I don't know if it has GParted installed. If it does, you'll save yourself a CD. If it doesn't you'll have to download it from here and burn it to a CD. Alternatively, if you have an Ubuntu disc lying around, you could use that.

Anyways, you could use GParted to wipe the Linux Mint partition and expand the Windows partition over the free space. The interface is quite simple, so you should be able to figure it out pretty quickly.

An alternative would be to boot into Windows and download EASEUS Partition Master to do the exact same thing.
A penguin broke my windows with a half-eaten apple!

#9 lime237

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 12:10 AM

Unfortunately after precisely following the Youtube video you posted, I am unable to access the windows partition. After starting up my computer, it now gives me the gna grub menu, with Linux Mint being one of the options (it works fine). However, the option labelled "Windows" takes me to the recovery partition, where I am asked if I would like to restore my computer to the factory condition. Any way I can recover my windows partition so I can access it?

#10 MadDawg

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 01:06 AM

Looks like grub is pointing to the wrong partition. Grub (or rather grub2 to be correct) is not really easy to configure. I'll have to look it up and see what I can dig up.
A penguin broke my windows with a half-eaten apple!

#11 lime237

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 01:36 AM

Ok thanks, let me know when you find out something.

#12 MadDawg

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 01:43 AM

Looks like you're not the only one with this problem. Take a look at these threads:

http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1513576
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1513374

Looks like the recommended course of action would be to create a custom menu entry for grub2. If you don't want to mess around with grub2 by yourself, then I can try and help. I'm not entirely sure how to create a custom entry for a Windows partition, but I think I can figure it out.

Can you post the output of sudo fdisk -l? This will help me figure out which partition Windows is on, provided the Windows partition is still bigger than its recovery partition.

Edited by MadDawg, 11 January 2011 - 01:48 AM.

A penguin broke my windows with a half-eaten apple!

#13 MadDawg

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 02:01 AM

It'll also help if you download this Boot Info Script. To run this script open a terminal and run cd ~\Downloads (this is assuming you leave the script in the Downloads folder), then run sudo bash boot_info_script055.sh. It'll generate a text file in the Downloads folder. Open it and scroll down to the line that reads ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/30_os-prober ### (You can do a Ctrl+F search to find it faster). Under that you should see something similar to this:

menuentry "Windows 7 (loader) (on /dev/sda1)" {
insmod part_msdos
insmod ntfs
set root='(hd0,msdos1)'
search --no-floppy --fs-uuid --set a65489ec5489bf93
chainloader +1
}


Post the Windows menu entry in your reply; it will help me figure out how to point the entry to the right partition.

Edited by MadDawg, 11 January 2011 - 02:02 AM.

A penguin broke my windows with a half-eaten apple!

#14 lime237

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 11:14 AM

Here are the results:

For sudo fdisk -l:
Disk /dev/sda: 500.1 GB, 500107862016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 60801 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0xcf996f33

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 * 1 57257 459909138 7 HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda2 59709 60800 8764416 7 HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda3 57257 59709 19699713 5 Extended
/dev/sda5 57257 59601 18833408 83 Linux
/dev/sda6 59601 59709 865280 82 Linux swap / Solaris

Partition table entries are not in disk order


I downloaded bootinfo script. However, when I run "cd ~\Downloads" I get a message saying "bash: cd: ~Downloads: No such file or directory". Not sure what I am doing wrong here, because I left the file in the Downloads folder. I get the same thing when I run "sudo bash boot_info_script055.sh.". Btw my version of Windows is Vista, not sure if this makes any difference...

#15 MadDawg

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Posted 11 January 2011 - 03:52 PM

That was a typo on my part; the command should be cd ~/Downloads (note the forward slash). Sorry about that.
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