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Partition Fedora & Ubuntu

asked 2018-12-18 12:29:15 -0500

0novanta gravatar image

I'm running Fedora 29 on a ASUSPRO P2520L, I need to partition the hard disk in order to have enough space for an Ubuntu installation, so to have both Fedora and Ubuntu on the same pc.

How can I do that?

Are there any good guides? I haven't been able to find one.


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Are you using LVM? Gparted from a live USB.

Panther gravatar imagePanther ( 2018-12-18 13:27:35 -0500 )edit

I don't know what a LVM is and I don't have gparted installed. Please explain further.

0novanta gravatar image0novanta ( 2018-12-18 14:47:09 -0500 )edit

Oh boy. Boot a live usb and run gparted. You may need to install it in the live environment. You can not do this from an installed os. See

Panther gravatar imagePanther ( 2018-12-18 15:52:22 -0500 )edit

Please post here output of cat /etc/fstab and sudo gdisk -l /dev/sda. We'll see how you disk is partitioned now (and if LVM is in use) and will be able provide you with more targeted/detailed advice.

Night Romantic gravatar imageNight Romantic ( 2018-12-19 01:08:27 -0500 )edit

@NightRomantica, I've responded to you in a new answer, I think it is easier to read.

0novanta gravatar image0novanta ( 2018-12-19 05:57:44 -0500 )edit

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answered 2018-12-19 02:52:19 -0500

Night Romantic gravatar image

A bit of general partitioning advice for several distros on one pc from my experience.

1. Regarding grub.

Make sure you install all your distros either in UEFI or in BIOS mode, or you'll run into trouble. Most modern pcs/laptops defaults to UEFI, but if you've installed Fedora in BIOS mode all the others have to use it as well.

If you use UEFI mode, then all the systems will use one EFI partition, you shouldn't make new ones for other distros. Also make sure you're not formatting it when installing new distros. I.e. you should tell installer to use existing EFI partition but not to format it.

One more thing. By default each new distro will try to install it's own copy of grub overwriting each other. All installers I've seen give you an option not to install grub, I'd suggest that's what you should do. But then after updating Ubuntu you may have to boot into Fedora and run grub2-mkconfig -o ... to update Ubuntu's boot entries. You can also make static boot entry to Ubuntu, it's easy to do but it's beyond the scope of this question. I'll provide additional info if ad when you need it.

It's also easy to run into situation, when with grub updates each distribution will overrite grub with it's own version. It can be easily repaired and avoided in the first place, that's just something to keep in mind and not be afraid of.

2. Which partitions to use.

I've come to this arrangement. For each distro I make it's own root and /home partitions (separate them for easy reinstalls without wiping your /home), also separate /boot if distro needs it. Fedora and Ubuntu in most cases don't need separate /boot.

I allocate about 20-30G for /root (more if you plan to install many applications or multiple desktop environments) and 5-10G (!!! see note below) for /home for each distro.

Then I have one big partition where I store all my data, and I share this partition between all the installed distros. I mount it as, let's say /mnt/data in all the distros (again, without ever reformatting it!), then I make symbolic links for Desktop, Documents, Music, Images folders to point to corresponding folders in data partition. Also I move other big folders (such as .steam) from my home partition to the big data partition with symbolic link pointing to it.

In this way I have different settings for different distros in quite small home partitions, but all of my data available to me from any distro on big /mnt/data partition. It requires a bit of micromanagement, but I think pluses far outweigh the minuses. :)

And you'll need one swap partitions for all you distros. If you want to use hibernation it'll have to be as big as you ram, if you don't I'd still suggest ... (more)

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Thank you, I'm not sure I need a partition, however in the next days I will know it, and then I will ask you questions ahahah

0novanta gravatar image0novanta ( 2018-12-19 05:59:09 -0500 )edit

answered 2018-12-19 05:56:11 -0500

0novanta gravatar image

Answering @NightRomantic.

cat /etc/fstab returns:

# /etc/fstab
# Created by anaconda on Sat Oct 29 18:49:04 2016
# Accessible filesystems, by reference, are maintained under '/dev/disk'
# See man pages fstab(5), findfs(8), mount(8) and/or blkid(8) for more info
/dev/mapper/fedora-root /                       ext4    defaults        1 1
UUID=637dcaa1-acd6-4f88-a708-1ba2a55fe5fe /boot                   ext4    defaults        1 2
UUID=1B13-CB86          /boot/efi               vfat    umask=0077,shortname=winnt 0 2
/dev/mapper/fedora-home /home                   ext4    defaults        1 2
/dev/mapper/fedora-swap swap                    swap    defaults        0 0

sudo gdisk -l /dev/sda returns:

GPT fdisk (gdisk) version 1.0.4

Partition table scan:
  MBR: protective
  BSD: not present
  APM: not present
  GPT: present

Found valid GPT with protective MBR; using GPT.
Disk /dev/sda: 976773168 sectors, 465.8 GiB
Model: ST500LT012-1DG14
Sector size (logical/physical): 512/4096 bytes
Disk identifier (GUID): 5EED7839-21BB-4567-A5F0-B29559081F29
Partition table holds up to 128 entries
Main partition table begins at sector 2 and ends at sector 33
First usable sector is 34, last usable sector is 976773134
Partitions will be aligned on 2048-sector boundaries
Total free space is 2029 sectors (1014.5 KiB)

Number  Start (sector)    End (sector)  Size       Code  Name
   1            2048          411647   200.0 MiB   EF00  EFI System Partition
   2          411648         1435647   500.0 MiB   8300  
   3         1435648       976773119   465.1 GiB   8E00
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Your installation uses LVM, entries like /dev/mapper/... in your fstab show this.

In this case you shouldn't use gparted to make new partitions, you should use LVM tools to make space available for Ubuntu installation and to create new LVM logical volumes: ubuntu-root and ubuntu-home are absolute minimum you'll need.

You can also follow my advice and create one shared logical volume for data. All I wrote about partitions including sizes are applicable to LVM logical volumes as well.

Night Romantic gravatar imageNight Romantic ( 2018-12-19 06:28:08 -0500 )edit

With a cursory search I couldn't find a GUI tool to work with LVM volumes (there used to be one previously). You can make space available with command line ones (check man lvm and man lvreduce, but you have to resize you ext4 partitions BEFORE you reduce the size of LVM volume!!!).

I'd also strongly suggest reading a bit about LVM before you do anything to understand what you're doing. It's easy to find -- and LVM itself is quite easy from practical perspective without going too deep in the details, so don't be afraid ;-)

Night Romantic gravatar imageNight Romantic ( 2018-12-19 06:42:43 -0500 )edit

Although it is easy to increase the size of a lvm, It is not always possible to reduce the size. It might be easier to simply start again, plan and create your partitions, and then install both OS.

Panther gravatar imagePanther ( 2018-12-19 10:17:12 -0500 )edit

Thank you all!

0novanta gravatar image0novanta ( 2018-12-19 12:06:02 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2018-12-18 12:29:15 -0500

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Last updated: Dec 19 '18