Gparted Error when viewed in Mint 17 Live USB session

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Gparted Error when viewed in Mint 17 Live USB session

Postby Orographic on Mon Sep 01, 2014 12:13 am

Hi folks,

I've got a 2011 laptop that has run Linux before but currently has an Acronis restored image of Windows 7 on it. I want to put Mint 17 on it and have tested via a live USB version of Mint 17 and it works well. However, when I try to install Mint 17 as a dual boot with Windows 7, there is no option to do that, just the erase entire disk option and install that way. This system doesn't have UEFI or secure boot.

I noticed in gparted with the Mint 17 Live USB that I get this warning:

'Invalid partition table - recursive partition on 'dev/sda'

Here are the images of the error, taken via my phone:


https://www.dropbox.com/s/1ldjmlfe4g0u9 ... 3.jpg?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/9m8r5ww50e6us ... 2.jpg?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/f2fyt8hwwfebh ... 1.jpg?dl=0

I have an unallocated space of 7.5GB on /dev/sda

Can I set that unallocated space by using 'msdos' for the partition table then format as Ext 4?

Can I then also re-size that space to install mint 17?

I'm not sure what this /dev/sda unallocated space is. I only have one hard drive in this lap top. Maybe it was an error when Windows 7 was first imaged to this machine at the retailers?

This isn't a production machine and I have made images of the current setup in clonezilla and Acronis, so any errors are fairly easy to repair.

Thanks for your help. :)
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Re: Gparted Error when viewed in Mint 17 Live USB session

Postby Orographic on Mon Sep 01, 2014 2:44 am

Okay, i've realised what the first image is describing...Gparted is reading the plugged in USB stick as the second drive! So, its not really an error, I'd guess.

Still, I don't understand why I can't dual boot on this laptop. Any thoughts? Is it the Windows 7 recovery partition causing an issue? Maybe there are too many partitions for Linux to provide a dual boot option, with all of those silly Gigabyte branded recovery partitions in Windows 7?

Maybe I could just re-install Windows 7 (i don't have a install disk with this laptop, just the recovery partition but have a spare install DVD) and see how that goes?
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Re: Gparted Error when viewed in Mint 17 Live USB session

Postby Derek_S on Mon Sep 01, 2014 8:27 am

Hello Orographic - I took a look at the sreenshot with Gparted showing your existing partitions on dev/sdb. Here is the problem. Only four primary partitions are allowed on a disk with a MBR parttion table. This is why you cannot add any new partitions, and why the Linux Mint installer would complain of having no available room on the disk for installation.

What you need to do is copy any files from your existing Data partition(sdb4) to your Windows C:\ partition(sdb3). Then delete sdb4, leaving you with you 358GB of unallocated space. Then use Gparted to create an extended partition using this unallocated space, and within the new extended partition you can create logical partitions. This is how you create more than four partitions on a MBR disk. Within this new extended partition, you can recreate a smaller Data partition for Windows, leaving unallocated space for your Linux Mint installation.

Here is a guide to using Gparted, it explains a lot more than I can here: http://www.dedoimedo.com/computers/gparted.html
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Re: Gparted Error when viewed in Mint 17 Live USB session

Postby Orographic on Mon Sep 01, 2014 5:49 pm

Thankyou very much for your considered post, its appreciated. I never take replies for granted. :)

Yes, I was thinking about deleting that Data partition, it has nothing on it of note and also my laptop is not a production machine and has clonezilla and Acronis backup images, if something goes wrong.

I will read that link more.

Thankyou. :)
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Re: Gparted Error when viewed in Mint 17 Live USB session

Postby Orographic on Tue Sep 02, 2014 12:41 am

I just deleted my D: Windows data partition via Gparted and was then able to install Mint 17 as a dual boot with W7 on this rarely used 2011 laptop with no UEFI BIOS. As you said, it had too many partitions before so it wouldn't install as dual boot. I was a bit scared to re-size my Windows partition (its only 100GB) but I don't store much in Windows anyway, so left that partition as it is. Lappy is only a Core i5-2410 with 4GB of RAM but it flies with Mint. It actually has a Nvidia GT 540M card in it too.



This thread has helped me.
Last edited by Orographic on Tue Sep 02, 2014 6:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gparted Error when viewed in Mint 17 Live USB session

Postby Derek_S on Tue Sep 02, 2014 7:58 am

Hello Orographic - I'm glad to see this worked out for you. A note about resizing Windows partitions: You are much better off using Windows Disk Management to do this rather than using Gparted. Gparted is a very good partitioning tool, but using Windows Disk Management is preferred for one reason: when shrinking Windows partitions, it will not allow you to go too far and risk losing data.
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