First sdb7 cant hold your linux data because its NTFS. That is a windows format. Somehow you were able when you were assigning partitions to assign your host there.
A:Well, I installed from within Windows. I told it to use the 30 GB partition entitled Linux but apparently it ignored me and put everything in a different partition on a different hard disk.
You didnt include sda so I cant see what the swap issue is. I dont know what you were trying to do but I sorta might see where you are and I can tell you what I would do. In my opinion a reinstall would be the best option. I would reinstall Linux on the 30 gig partition as planned. let Linux set its own defaults. but I would let the system set everything up in that one partition.
A: Basically I agree with you, but I have no way of preventing it doing exactly the same thing again.
that should be about less than 10 gig for your root and a little more than 20 gig for your home folder which is where all your config files are located.
A: the install menu asks you how many GB's to assign. The initial installation default was 4 GB so that is what I used and immediately was getting lack of disk space messages. So I installed again and chose 30GB. Was this a mistake because that left not enough room on the 34 GB partition for Linux do put other things in the partition and this is why it grabbed space from somewhere else? Or put another way: are you suggesting that with the next install instead of asking for 30 GB I should put in 10 GB which gives enough space for Linux (root) and then there will 20 GB left for the home which will then be assigned there since there is room for it?
For now until you gain a little more experience that would be best for you. At this point I would not feel that you moving files would be beneficial at this point. Clean install on the 30 gig would be your best option and that would be what I would do. you didnt include what is on the rest of the 80 gig drive is Windows there or empty space.....?
A: the rest of the drive has some other partitions with stuff. I could conceivably empty that entire disk and dedicate it to Linux but I wanted to get Linux basically running first and also see if I can run certain Windows programs which I need-want at the same time, at which point I will begin to move to Linux as my main OS. I am really not sure why - perhaps its boredom - but I am heartily tired of the Microsoft environment after 25 years; moreover I am now with XP for about 10 years or whatever, luckily didn't move to Vista, tried W7 briefly but didn't feel it offered enough improvement to justify all the dicking around that learning a new OS naturally entails - also several important older programs wouldn't run properly in it. Since installing XP 64 I have had many little problems all the time, probably due to a bad board and driver issues more than anything, but they remain unresolved and I am increasingly unwilling to delve into it all in XP after so many years with it. So I want a change, have heard good things about Linux for years but have held off because I am intimidated by too much programming command prompt stuff which I don't know. Black screen phobia! Still, if I can get the basics down somehow so that I can use the OS on a daily basis, over time I will learn more and gladly.
Anyway, looks like another install is called for.
Is there any way to back up what I have now, which has all the updates, applications etc. and just restore that into the new installation rather than having to spend several hours (for the third time) re-downloading and installing them? Or is it best to do the latter once the partition issue is properly set up in order to have a good fresh installation?