[Solved] GParted 'Random' Partition

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[Solved] GParted 'Random' Partition

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:18 am

Hi all,

I've got this random partition sat on my hard drive. The second is Windows recovery partition, the third is the Windows partition itself and fourth is Linux. It's an Intel SSD and I notice that the random partition is also exactly the same size as my RAM (co-incidence?)

Image

parted -l
Code: Select all
Model: ATA INTEL SSDSC2BW12 (scsi)
Disk /dev/sda: 120GB
Sector size (logical/physical): 512B/512B
Partition Table: msdos

Number  Start   End     Size    Type      File system  Flags
 1      1049kB  4296MB  4295MB  primary
 2      4296MB  18.3GB  14.0GB  primary   ntfs         boot
 3      18.3GB  70.4GB  52.1GB  primary   ntfs
 4      70.4GB  120GB   49.7GB  extended
 5      70.4GB  120GB   49.7GB  logical   ext4


Any idea what this is for?

Thanks
Last edited by WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Nov 24, 2012 2:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: GParted 'Random' Partition

Postby srs5694 on Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:27 am

I assume you mean /dev/sda1. My hunch is that it's something Windows-related, but I can't be sure. Try showing the output of "sudo fdisk -l /dev/sda" to provide a bit more information.
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Re: GParted 'Random' Partition

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:49 am

Of course!

Code: Select all
Disk /dev/sda: 120.0 GB, 120034123776 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 14593 cylinders, total 234441648 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x34245856

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1            2048     8390655     4194304   84  OS/2 hidden C: drive
/dev/sda2   *     8390656    35653631    13631488    7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda3        35653632   137433087    50889728    7  HPFS/NTFS/exFAT
/dev/sda4       137433088   234441647    48504280    5  Extended
/dev/sda5       137435136   234440703    48502784   83  Linux


Edit: If it is used by Windows, what is it used for and why isn't it just 'merged' in with the Windows partition?
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Re: GParted 'Random' Partition

Postby srs5694 on Sat Nov 24, 2012 11:13 am

The partition has a type code of 0x84 (as shown under the "Id" column), which is rather peculiar. fdisk thinks it's a hidden OS/2 partition, which of course is extremely unlikely these days. A more likely explanation is offered here:

84 Hibernation partition

(following Appendix E of the Microsoft APM 1.1f specification). Reported for various laptop models. E.g., used on Dell Latitudes (with Dell BIOS) that use the MKS2D utility. APM 1.2 hibernation partitions can be used by Windows 98 or higher.


You might try checking further sources to verify that your model ships with such a partition, or you could just accept that this explanation is correct. If it is a hibernation partition, it does explain why its size is identical to your computer's RAM size.

Edit: If it is used by Windows, what is it used for and why isn't it just 'merged' in with the Windows partition?


A hibernation partition is sometimes kept separate to ensure that the space in the partition isn't fragmented. Windows also sometimes creates ancillary partitions for a variety of other purposes, such as having a separate recovery partition and having space that its partitioning tools can use as "scratch space" when performing complex partitioning operations such as partition resizing.
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Re: GParted 'Random' Partition

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Nov 24, 2012 2:28 pm

Ok, I think the hibernation idea is correct. Is it safe enough to just delete? I suspend rather than hibernate, especially given that my swap is encrypted.
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Re: GParted 'Random' Partition

Postby srs5694 on Sat Nov 24, 2012 2:53 pm

WhatUsernameIsFree? wrote:Ok, I think the hibernation idea is correct. Is it safe enough to just delete? I suspend rather than hibernate, especially given that my swap is encrypted.


I don't know how your manufacturer uses the partition, so I can't say. It's a small enough partition that, IMHO, it's not worth the hassle and risk involved in reclaiming the space, so I just wouldn't worry about it.
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Re: GParted 'Random' Partition

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Nov 24, 2012 2:57 pm

srs5694 wrote:I don't know how your manufacturer uses the partition, so I can't say. It's a small enough partition that, IMHO, it's not worth the hassle and risk involved in reclaiming the space, so I just wouldn't worry about it.


I think, looking in perspective, that's a very insightful post and I'll leave it alone. :)

Thanks
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