Do not install Mint through Windows!!

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elfaure
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Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by elfaure » Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:30 am

Will some Mod *PLEASE* sticky this or similar so others can avoid what I and a few others already did, because the fix is an utter cluge without a complete resinstall:

Do not install Mint thru Windows; it needs its own partition(s) and doesn't get it (them) when installed this way. When you install thru Windows, Mint gets installed on existing disk partition(s) and fuse mounted as a loop device with a backing file. If you need to expand your installation, there is no good way to increase the size of your root / or /home or /usr folders; there is a "cluge" fix where you can combine mounts into a single LVM mount but that's it. You cannot use GParted to just move the partition slider right to increase space, and this is a *serious* limitation, actually a flaw as I see it, and it is very unclear the difference and impact to your installation until you run out of space and then realize what you need to do in order to fix it. I just installed Mint on two (2) different machines this way, and now have to make an iso backup, uninstall, and reinstall the right way. What a hassle. This should be *clearly* defined to the user during the installation, not have the user search forums after installation to figure this out.

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Pierre
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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by Pierre » Sat Jun 29, 2013 8:37 am

installing under windows, is really for Mint to be demonstrated to the windows user fraternity.

once you realize it's limitations, then you also realize that it needs to be installed into it's own partition(s)
- because, as you realized, - you cannot adjust anything, to accommodate your changing needs.
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elfaure
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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by elfaure » Sat Jun 29, 2013 10:02 am

Yes, I understand that now. But being a first time installer, I should have been made aware of this intent and its implications and limitations before spending a week setting up two machines, then running low on space on both. The suggested 8.5GB install size is a joke. I chose 20GB for one install, and I'm still low on space. Just my imported Outlook data was 12GB alone. The installer doesn't mention *anything* about this when installing from live CD.

So to remedy this situation, I just make an image of my current installations, reinstall with partitions, and copy the data back over to the new installations for root, home, and usr?

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usbtux
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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by usbtux » Sun Jun 30, 2013 3:12 pm

elfaure wrote: I should have been made aware of this intent and its implications and limitations before spending a week setting up two machines, then running low on space on both. ... The installer doesn't mention *anything* about this when installing from live CD.

So to remedy this situation, I just make an image of my current installations, reinstall with partitions, and copy the data back over to the new installations for root, home, and usr?
I totally agree. AFAIK there is no mention of its limitations or usage. It should have more info or a read me associated with it, and of course the "double install" makes the product Pi** poor IMNSHO.

Back up your /Home folder somewhere safe and Do a complete install. Then from a liveCD/USB drop the home folder into the home partition overwriting the existing files - This should copy your data and settings into the new install ( make sure the name and password ate the same as the mint4win install.) providing they are the same desktop and version. eg Mint, Cinnamon, 15
http://goo.gl/DXKgM LinuxMint tutorials.
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karlchen
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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by karlchen » Sun Jun 30, 2013 3:49 pm

Hi, folks.

Sorry, I do not quite understand the fuss you are making about the size limit of a Mint4win (Wubi) installation.
When you launch mint4win, the setup programme will not allow you to set an installation size larger than 30 GB. [1].
Guess why this is the maximum size which you can set initially? Because this is the maximum size defined for the root.disk file which will hold your Linux filesystem.
There may even be a way around this limit, provided your Windows partition has got enough available free space: [url=http://matthewcasperson.blogspot.com/2012/10/increasing-ubuntu-wubi-disk-image.html]Increasing Ubuntu Wubi disk image[/url]. - Yet, I cannot give any warranty this will work, because I have not tried it.
Personally, even after using a Mint4win installation Mint for my daily work for 3.5 years, I have not managed to fill the the 30 GB filesystem. - I simply store my data outside the Linux filesystem on different partitions. :wink:

So, as long as you are aware of what you are doing and which limits you accept, there is nothing wrong with performing a Mint4win installation of Mint, in particular in cases where you are not expected or where you are explicitly forbidden to repartition your Windows machine.

Whenever you have the chance of installing Mint on a separate disk partition that belongs to Mint alone, by any means do so. Yet, make a realistic forecast on the needed partition size or you will run into the same old "out of disk space" problem soon which you have experienced on the Mint4win root.disk.

Kind regards,
Karl
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elfaure
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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by elfaure » Sun Jun 30, 2013 9:02 pm

First off, thanks *very much* for the informative replies. Knowing there is a way to increase the Wubi image backing file is encouraging and enlightening, and is *the info* I was hoping to find. The 30GB limitation was not. I thought there should be some hack somewhere to get this done. Little did I know it was archived into the Wubi installer and right under my nose. This tool, if it works, should be built into the Wubi installer by default; to be used in lieu of GParted to resize LFS space in Windows for Wubi installs.

But unfortunately I did not read enough before installing, or maybe better put, there was not enough to read, and when presented with a screen telling me the typical install size is 8.5 GB (which again, I state is a *JOKE*) I felt 20 GB should be plenty (before I realized that 5 years worth of my mail archive would cost me 12GB. And yes, I need access to all the old mail unfortunately). And it probably is, if you take the time to mount and use other data partitions outside the LFS as you state you do. But for a first time Windows transition user, this is unnecessary complication requiring a fairly firm grasp of the Linux OS and its many file systems, comfortable with editing fstab, and using the mount command in the least, or preferably writing an init.d startup script. Not really what I would call a plug-n-play OS install by any means. If you want to attract Windows market share and make it easy for users to go Linux, the installation should be constructed so by *any* method. Luckily I'm tech, script and root-Android savvy, so I should be able to figure it out a few different ways. And now that its written, others can find it too. After backing my home and making a CD/DVD of my installed packages and upgrades, I will be the guinea pig to see if this works. I was going to have to do a full re-install anyway, what do I have to loose? I'll report back when I do.

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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by elfaure » Tue Jul 02, 2013 3:13 pm

Can someone please explain to me the relationship between Wubi root.disk size, and Linux userspace (filesystem). I see absolutely no relationship when I view my root folder in disk usage analyzer to the size of my Wubi root.disk :?:

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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by karlchen » Tue Jul 02, 2013 3:32 pm

Hello, elfaure.

On a Ubuntu Wubi installation / Mint4win Mint installation, the file root.disk is a container file stored on a Windows NTFS partition. By design, the root.disk file cannot be larger than 30 GB (There might be ways to get a larger root.disk file, see above.). The container file root.disk holds the Linux filesystem used by your Mint system. As a consequence this filesystem cannot exceed 30 GB, either. In fact, the maximum size of all files and folders stored on your Mint system will be about 5% less than 30 GB. The reason is that the most frequently used Linux filesystem ext4 uses up to 5% of the available disk space for filesystem journalizing information.

Kind regards,
Karl
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elfaure
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Re: Do not install Mint through Windows!!

Post by elfaure » Wed Jul 03, 2013 10:28 am

Triumph, success, virtuoso disk. Make this a guide??
Ok, I was able to figure out how to resize my wubi virtual disk. Here's how its done:

It is based off this blog post, with modifications:
http://ignissolus.blogspot.com/2013/02/resize-your-wubimint4win-virtual-disk.html
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1. Mount the NTFS partition where the Linux Mint installed (in my case it's already mounted as host because I'm running a Linux Mint when doing this. To check it just type "mount". If you're not sure about your disk "number" (such as 1 in /dev/sda1), type "sudo fdisk -l" to check the number based on its size)

2. Shows you the size of your existing wubi

Code: Select all

du -h --apparent-size /host/linuxmint/disks/root.disk
3. Get an interactive root shell. Next command did not work unless root.

Code: Select all

sudo -i
4. Check and fix and problems with wubi

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e2fsck -f /host/linuxmint/disks/root.disk
5. Resize wubi to 32GB max size (may be possible to make larger but staying within the limits of what is documented 30-32GB is max size)

Code: Select all

resize2fs /host/linuxmint/disks/root.disk 32G
You may think you are done, but you may not be. After rebooting my system, some additional fixes and checks were required. It appeared I had messed up my virtual disk, but after two reboot cycles and following the prompts to fix and let check any problems, I was finally rebooted back into Mint with a 32GB virtual disk size and now plenty of room to play. Mission (impossible) accomplished. Better to do the full install, but at least this is a saving grace for wubi installers.

[Edit] I have turned this last post into a [Guide]. It can be found here:

http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=138781

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