Get back my unused hard drive space

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Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby gibbs1984 on Sun Feb 24, 2013 3:05 pm

Hi all,

I have my Linux Mint 14 Nadia (Cinnamon) 32bit computer setup on 3 partitions (ignoring the Windows partition).

Now when I first setup my computer I just each partition plenty of space but as it's been like this for about 4 years I don't think I'm ever going to use up the space so is it easily possible to regain that space back into my /home partition?

Image

I'd like to leave say about 10gb for /root so reclaiming 17gb.

Would like to leave about 500mb for SWAP so reclaiming around 5gb. (My SWAP has never been over 200mb and it's never used normally, only using it now I believe because 1 of my sticks of RAM died on me which I'll be replacing this week).

21gb in total.

Any help appreciated and GUI would be easier for me, I use the command line quite a bit but would prefer a GUI for this.

:)
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby catweazel on Sun Feb 24, 2013 3:40 pm

gibbs1984 wrote:is it easily possible to regain that space back into my /home partition?

Generally this type of operation is not done at all, and you may find that the partioning program simply won't support it. Also it is frought with the risk of data loss. It's one thing to move the end of a partition to shrink or extend it, but quite another to move the start of a partition.

To get that space safely you would have to copy the contents of the 2nd partition off the drive, then delete and recreate the partition.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby Jaws on Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:36 pm

It is easily do-able with a GUI but it takes a long, long amount of time. I've recently performed similar operations on a KDE install. Still, it's very important to backup your critical data.

Download and burn a copy of GParted Live CD.

http://gparted.sourceforge.net/index.php

GParted Live was created for exactly what you're trying to do. But remember, once you start an operation, do not cancel it.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby kyphi on Sun Feb 24, 2013 5:37 pm

Using gparted you can reduce the size of your /root partition and create a new partition on the freed space. You will have to create a directory and mount point for it. That will create a partition of 17 GB according to your figures. Keep in mind that there is a possibility of data loss although in practice I have never experienced it when performing similar manoeuvres.

My thoughts on the matter are: Is it really worth the risk for so little gain?

Alternative measures you might consider:
1. Free some space on your /home partition.
2. Install an extra hard drive.
3. Use an external storage drive.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby gibbs1984 on Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:59 pm

Thanks for the replies guys.

I suppose from what I've read the gains don't outweigh the potential for buggering things up.

I have a 500gb external hard drive but I use that mainly as backup drive.

I think the safest option really would be to buy another external hard drive which I'll use to increase my hard drive capacity and keep my current external hard drive as the backup drive.

Appreciate the help :)
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby kyphi on Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:13 am

If you are going to buy another external drive then you might consider the advice of TehGhodTrole and copy the contents of your current /home partition to the new drive. Then you can re-organise your current partitions to say / = 10 MB, Swap = 2 MB and /home = the remainder.

If you do nothing, you will be faced with the same partitioning dilemma when you install Linux Mint Olivia.

If you do not require any further comments, would you mark your question as Solved please.
Last edited by kyphi on Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby catweazel on Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:41 am

gibbs1984 wrote:I suppose from what I've read the gains don't outweigh the potential for buggering things up.

You made the right choice. Cheers.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby catweazel on Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:49 am

Jaws wrote:But remember, once you start an operation, do not cancel it.

And hope to high heaven the power doesn't fail or the disk doesn't cark it. When people ask questions that have answers with potentially disastrous outcomes it is your responsibility to clearly and unambiguously spell out those dangers. Telling the poster to 'backup his critical data' is not sufficient, and trying to placate the OP with the idea that it worked once for you, without telling him it may well not work for him and may trash his disk, is also not good enough. Please be more careful next time.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby bjornmu on Mon Feb 25, 2013 2:18 am

You might also create a 'home' directory under /root and move some of of the stuff from /home over there. Then create a softlink so that it's still accessible from a path under /home.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby Enna on Mon Feb 25, 2013 2:26 am

Hi,

I've got a somewhat different question about 'intelligent partitioning': I am about to install MINT 14 and I want the system to be on one partition, so that I can remove it/update it without needing all my files to copy to a different hard drive. So creating a 'home partition' would be good. But I have almost no experinece in partitioning, so therefor need a step by step guide.
I assume there is a thread already, describing this, that's why I'm not starting a new one, but a link to answer my question would be nice.
Thanks guys!

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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby catweazel on Mon Feb 25, 2013 2:36 am

Enna wrote:I assume there is a thread already, describing this, that's why I'm not starting a new one, but a link to answer my question would be nice.


http://forums.linuxmint.com/search.php
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby usbtux on Mon Feb 25, 2013 4:05 pm

How to dualboot Windows and Linux using a simple install. This is a simple standard install. http://youtu.be/lzXZpEWTApc

How to dualboot Windows and Linux using a manual install This is manual install. http://youtu.be/GlEVQqFtcuM

http://youtu.be/UuL1NkXI7FQ how to setup mint using gparted

http://youtu.be/kBrRL6iG0NM using the installer (ubiquity) after setting up your partitions. Or installing over an existing install partitions.
http://goo.gl/DXKgM LinuxMint tutorials.
Running LinuxMint 17 Cinnamon/KDE/XFCE
http://goo.gl/WFu0u Installing Mint - the screen cast videos.
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Re: Get back my unused hard drive space

Postby Enna on Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:55 am

Thanks TehGhodTrole, I know, but any search with 'partitioning' and other keywords relevant for my search just have too many hits and I hoped to get a link to the exact topic I need.

Thank you also heaps usbtux! I watched the videos, very helpful!
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