Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP? [SOLVED]

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momist
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Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP? [SOLVED]

Post by momist » Fri Oct 19, 2018 6:57 am

Hi everyone. I've been a bit too busy since my birthday to deal with my new laptop, and I suspect I'll not get much time over the next three days to do much with it. This machine is to replace my long standing 'desktop PC' which is showing it's age now and 'm fed up of the space it takes up and the noise it makes. That machine has been upgraded many, many times since the 1990's and I don't want to do it any more.
Today, though, I've been thinking through what I intend to do with the laptop, and have a couple of questions:

The current laptop system has Windows10 over the entire SSD of 256GB. It does not have a recovery drive - that's on a USB stick. It does do 'restore points' but I think they are in the main 'C' partition. My intention is to dual boot with Mint 19.

So, my intention is to re-size the Win partition to 100GB or maybe 120GB (I will be using Windows for scanning and printing art works). The new Linux Mint installation will use the rest, and I like to keep / and /home separate. My current PC SSD setup has /boot, /, /home, swap. I also have two large HDDs with data and backups. I wish to keep using the large HDDs in USB caddies, and will symlink the folders on these from my /home.

1) I have learned that Mint 19 uses a swap folder instead of a swap partition, by default. Should I persist with a swap partition, or use the new folder structure, and why?
2) My laptop has 8GB RAM. I have no experience using 'sleep' or 'suspend' as an alternative to shutting down, and will likely try them out. How large a swap should I use?
3) I assume that, similar to earlier upgrades of Mint, I will need to use GParted to sort out my partitioning system, and then 'do something else' for the Mint installation? Or has a GParted function been rolled into the installer?

Thanks for any advice, I really appreciate the support available on the forum.
Last edited by momist on Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
momist : a follower of the Greek god Momer.

gm10
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Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP?

Post by gm10 » Fri Oct 19, 2018 7:04 am

1) Swap partition makes it easier to hibernate, otherwise I'd say a swap file is more flexible since you can modify it at any time without having to re-partition.
2) It only matters for hibernation, which writes RAM contents to disk. Your swap space needs to be as large as your RAM contents at the time plus any swap memory you may already be using. For more details have a look here: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/SwapFaq
3) The installer can do some of it but in my experience it's generally easier/more comfortable to use GParted for everything.

Note that the hibernation feature is not available by default on LM19, you would need to enable it manually.

momist
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Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP?

Post by momist » Fri Oct 19, 2018 9:56 am

Thanks gm10. I'm quite happy to make a swap partition, so I'll go with that, I can give it 16GB or similar, so there's room if needed. The old PC has 16GB RAM, so I don't think the swap was ever needed, but this is a different case. Most of my big files (pictures, music, videos) will be moved from /home onto folders in the HDD in a caddy, so the Mint install won't need acres of space. Thanks for that link.
I trust GParted to shrink the Windows partition, as I've done similar things before with it, but I've never had a UEFI system, so that's a bit of unknown territory to me.
momist : a follower of the Greek god Momer.

momist
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Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP? [SOLVED]

Post by momist » Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:18 pm

Well, I got there in the end. For anyone reading this, I ended up using the following partitions:
swap, 12GB (should be enough for hibernation, I doubt that it will be used as swap much)
/, 30GB Lots of space, if I prune out the kernels at intervals.
/home, the remaining 38GB after shrinking the Windows 10 system to a reasonable size. I used the Windows tool to shrink it in the end, as I had a great deal of difficulty sorting out the UEFI and BitLocker systems to let me even use GParted. Windows itself limited how small I could go, as there were 'files which could not be moved' and also because I had to leave space for future apps etc. I suspect it will end up lacking enough space, but one bridge at a time.
I'm up and running now. Good luck to others doing this with such a laptop, it's not for the feint hearted.
momist : a follower of the Greek god Momer.

gm10
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Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP? [SOLVED]

Post by gm10 » Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:50 pm

momist wrote:
Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:18 pm
Windows itself limited how small I could go, as there were 'files which could not be moved' and also because I had to leave space for future apps etc.
Windows needs a good chunk of free space to be able to install the bi-annual system upgrades, too.

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lewtwo
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Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP? [SOLVED]

Post by lewtwo » Sat Oct 27, 2018 6:42 am

Actually they both need quite a bit of elbow room if to enable "disk protection" in windows and "Timeshift" in Linux mint.
"Engineering is the art of planning and forethought."
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momist
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Re: Custom partitioning - SWAP? [SOLVED]

Post by momist » Sat Oct 27, 2018 6:55 pm

Yes lewtwo. But that never seems to be quantified. I'm very new to Windows 10, not having ever used Vista, 7 or 8. I had to use XP at work before I retired, but only in a corporate way which meant I never manipulated it in any way. I've been Linux only at home since some time around the "Millenium Bug", starting with some French release starting with 'M' if I remember correctly. Was that Mandrake? I then moved to Ubuntu Warty.
I'm not very happy with Timeshift, and use my own Backintime system for backups to another caddy mounted HDD. Since I have a separate /home, I don't see the point of a backup of the 'system' files on /. These can always be re-installed from scratch. It's my own data that I need to protect.
Regarding Windows, I have made a 'Revovery Drive" which turned out to be 24GB. Dell bloatware, I assume. Then when I came to reformat for my Linux install, I discovered that there is also a "Image" partition of 14GB and a "WinReTools" partition of 1GB on there. Dell Support gets in there as well with 1.14GB, and 650MB for EFI. Blimey. Not much left for my poor little Mint! Hence my /home is only 38GB. <sigh>
Once out of warranty, I may blow Dell's Win10 away, and reinstall a cut down clean version. I only want it to drive some fussy hardware and for the interest of learning a new skill set.
momist : a follower of the Greek god Momer.

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