Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

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barth90
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Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

Post by barth90 »

I've been running dual boot for about 3 years now, because there were still a few programs I needed to run only in Windows. Lately, I've installed VirtualBox and I'm now running these programs in a virtual environment with no problem. So I'm ready to make the plunge and go Linux Mint only with the help of Virtualbox for the occasional Window application.

Here's my current setup:
I have a SSD drive that hosts the 2 OS. It has Linux Mint 19.3 Cinnamon, working alongside Windows 10. There is no data on that drive
I have a HDD drive that is used for all my data. That HDD drive is formatted NTFS and is accessible to the 2 OS.

Here's where I need your expertise. I really don't know how to proceed for getting rid of Windows and running only with Linux Mint. What I would like to do is use the SSD drive for Linux Mint only and keep the HDD storage disk untouched.

Is it just as simple as using, let's say, a live USB copy of MInt 20, and starting a new install and letting the bootable copy override everything on the SSD?
Or do I have to re-format the SSD and start from there?
Is there a third option?

Sorry for the long post, and all the question, but I've decided to fly solo and I want to do it correctly. What a relief it will be when Windows is gone!

Thank you for your suggestions and help .
motoryzen
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Re: Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

Post by motoryzen »

barth90 wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:56 pm
I've been running dual boot for about 3 years now, because there were still a few programs I needed to run only in Windows. Lately, I've installed VirtualBox and I'm now running these programs in a virtual environment with no problem. So I'm ready to make the plunge and go Linux Mint only with the help of Virtualbox for the occasional Window application.

Here's my current setup:
I have a SSD drive that hosts the 2 OS. It has Linux Mint 19.3 Cinnamon, working alongside Windows 10. There is no data on that drive
I have a HDD drive that is used for all my data. That HDD drive is formatted NTFS and is accessible to the 2 OS.

Here's where I need your expertise. I really don't know how to proceed for getting rid of Windows and running only with Linux Mint. What I would like to do is use the SSD drive for Linux Mint only and keep the HDD storage disk untouched.

Is it just as simple as using, let's say, a live USB copy of MInt 20, and starting a new install and letting the bootable copy override everything on the SSD?
Or do I have to re-format the SSD and start from there?
Is there a third option?

Sorry for the long post, and all the question, but I've decided to fly solo and I want to do it correctly. What a relief it will be when Windows is gone!

Thank you for your suggestions and help .
If you don't mind having to re-manually set up everything in that current Linux Mint 19.3 installation and you've already backed up all critical data from that ssd involving it that is possible to back up on a separate drive, then I say just run the mint 19.3 ( if you're happy with 19.3 that is or 20 or 20.1) and install it and select ( erase disk and install Linux Mint). goal....solved.

BUT...if not, from my experience ( and this is just one of the many reasons why I don't recommend dual booting windows and linux from the same storage drive) it can be more complicated depending on how you set it all up.

1. Did you already have Win 10 installed into that SSD ...before..you installed LInux Mint 19.3? If yes, did you choose " install Linux mint along side windows" or did you choose " something else" and then manually created other partitions including the root partition and told the installer to install Mint into that partition?

*** Even if that last part is the exact path or the " install LM along side windows" option was your choice, there is no guarantee that just deleting the Windows partition wont mess up your boot loader.

Often if you start with Windows and install LInux mint into the same storage drive ( unless something recent ..say in the past 1.5 years or less that I am unaware of and could be ..legit ) the Linux grub will overwrite the windows MBR's management of booting into any OS or...overwrite it completely. Sometimes even though that could be the result, a windows update could mess up Linux Grub. TLDR = Linux Grub and Windows MBR were never, still aren't, and probably never will be designed to play nicely together.

I'd like SMG, Kadaicha Man, or another more experience Linux veteran to chime in here who , chances are, has better room to help here as I gave up on dual booting given it's always ended in disaster for me and I don't wish to offer the wrong advice.

2. Did you have Linux mint installed First and then installed Win 10 ? If so there is a chance that Windows boot loader took over ( not necessarily deleted the Linux Grub booting system, but just ..butting in line so to speak).

So before anyone , I think, could offer the right suggestion, I think we should know if it's number 1 or Number 2 situation.

Regardless before you do anything. PLEASE....

A. Do a Timeshift backup of that SSD , and even also if you can a system image clone ( such as using Foxclone's "clone" option. I've had rock solid success with that so far. Andy, the dev involved in it, has been good to communicate fixing any bugs I've encountered as well as many others I bet. Current version is 45 I think. Stick to using a usb 3.0 thumb drive as the Foxclone bootable iso drive though)

B. Manually back up any critical data you can ( such as docs, pictures, music, videos, saved games...etc) to a completely separate drive ..just in case. Forest Gump put it best at the Tshirt creation idea scene of that movie that shows the pickup truck wreck xD --
barth90
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Re: Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

Post by barth90 »

motoryzen wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 7:02 pm
barth90 wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:56 pm
I've been running dual boot for about 3 years now, because there were still a few programs I needed to run only in Windows. Lately, I've installed VirtualBox and I'm now running these programs in a virtual environment with no problem. So I'm ready to make the plunge and go Linux Mint only with the help of Virtualbox for the occasional Window application.

Here's my current setup:
I have a SSD drive that hosts the 2 OS. It has Linux Mint 19.3 Cinnamon, working alongside Windows 10. There is no data on that drive
I have a HDD drive that is used for all my data. That HDD drive is formatted NTFS and is accessible to the 2 OS.

Here's where I need your expertise. I really don't know how to proceed for getting rid of Windows and running only with Linux Mint. What I would like to do is use the SSD drive for Linux Mint only and keep the HDD storage disk untouched.

Is it just as simple as using, let's say, a live USB copy of MInt 20, and starting a new install and letting the bootable copy override everything on the SSD?
Or do I have to re-format the SSD and start from there?
Is there a third option?

Sorry for the long post, and all the question, but I've decided to fly solo and I want to do it correctly. What a relief it will be when Windows is gone!

Thank you for your suggestions and help .
If you don't mind having to re-manually set up everything in that current Linux Mint 19.3 installation and you've already backed up all critical data from that ssd involving it that is possible to back up on a separate drive, then I say just run the mint 19.3 ( if you're happy with 19.3 that is or 20 or 20.1) and install it and select ( erase disk and install Linux Mint). goal....solved.

BUT...if not, from my experience ( and this is just one of the many reasons why I don't recommend dual booting windows and linux from the same storage drive) it can be more complicated depending on how you set it all up.

1. Did you already have Win 10 installed into that SSD ...before..you installed LInux Mint 19.3? If yes, did you choose " install Linux mint along side windows" or did you choose " something else" and then manually created other partitions including the root partition and told the installer to install Mint into that partition?

*** Even if that last part is the exact path or the " install LM along side windows" option was your choice, there is no guarantee that just deleting the Windows partition wont mess up your boot loader.

Often if you start with Windows and install LInux mint into the same storage drive ( unless something recent ..say in the past 1.5 years or less that I am unaware of and could be ..legit ) the Linux grub will overwrite the windows MBR's management of booting into any OS or...overwrite it completely. Sometimes even though that could be the result, a windows update could mess up Linux Grub. TLDR = Linux Grub and Windows MBR were never, still aren't, and probably never will be designed to play nicely together.

I'd like SMG, Kadaicha Man, or another more experience Linux veteran to chime in here who , chances are, has better room to help here as I gave up on dual booting given it's always ended in disaster for me and I don't wish to offer the wrong advice.

2. Did you have Linux mint installed First and then installed Win 10 ? If so there is a chance that Windows boot loader took over ( not necessarily deleted the Linux Grub booting system, but just ..butting in line so to speak).

So before anyone , I think, could offer the right suggestion, I think we should know if it's number 1 or Number 2 situation.

Regardless before you do anything. PLEASE....

A. Do a Timeshift backup of that SSD , and even also if you can a system image clone ( such as using Foxclone's "clone" option. I've had rock solid success with that so far. Andy, the dev involved in it, has been good to communicate fixing any bugs I've encountered as well as many others I bet. Current version is 45 I think. Stick to using a usb 3.0 thumb drive as the Foxclone bootable iso drive though)

B. Manually back up any critical data you can ( such as docs, pictures, music, videos, saved games...etc) to a completely separate drive ..just in case. Forest Gump put it best at the Tshirt creation idea scene of that movie that shows the pickup truck wreck xD --
Thank you for your fast reply.

To answer your questions:

Question 1. Windows was already installed and I chose "something else " as an option. I manually created and chose the size of my partition. Here are 2 screenshots. The first is of the 2 disks and the second is of the SSD partions.

SSD and HDD.png
SSD.png

Question 2. Windows was installed first, followed by Mint 17 which was updated to 18 then 19 then 19.3

Statement A. Timeshift is installed and run on a regular basis. (saved my bacon a few times!)

Statement b. My HDD disk that contains all of my data is backed up regularly and is current.
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AndyMH
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Re: Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

Post by AndyMH »

Here's where I need your expertise. I really don't know how to proceed for getting rid of Windows and running only with Linux Mint. What I would like to do is use the SSD drive for Linux Mint only and keep the HDD storage disk untouched.
If you want to keep your existing install, then boot your mint install media and run gparted from it. Delete sdb1 and move all the other partitions left to use the unallocated space created (I'd do it one partition at a time). When that is done you can then increase the size of /home, sdb4, to use the additional space created.

It will take some time, you have around 150GB of data to move. Take an image backup first.

When you finally get to rebooting mint, sudo update-grub to get rid of the win entry in grub.
Homebrew i5-8400+GTX1080 Cinnamon 19.0, 3 x Thinkpad T430 Cinnamon 19.0, i7-3632 , i5-3320, i5-3210, Thinkpad T60 19.0 Mate
barth90
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Re: Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

Post by barth90 »

AndyMH wrote:
Wed Feb 24, 2021 5:45 am
Here's where I need your expertise. I really don't know how to proceed for getting rid of Windows and running only with Linux Mint. What I would like to do is use the SSD drive for Linux Mint only and keep the HDD storage disk untouched.
If you want to keep your existing install, then boot your mint install media and run gparted from it. Delete sdb1 and move all the other partitions left to use the unallocated space created (I'd do it one partition at a time). When that is done you can then increase the size of /home, sdb4, to use the additional space created.

It will take some time, you have around 150GB of data to move. Take an image backup first.

When you finally get to rebooting mint, sudo update-grub to get rid of the win entry in grub.
Thanks Andy for this clear and precise action plan. I will try this today.

Only one question. Do I do the grub update before I reboot Mint
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AndyMH
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Re: Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

Post by AndyMH »

No you do it after you have got rid of the win partition, moved your linux partitions and then rebooted as normal.
Be prepared for it to take a long time, have a coffee, cigarette, take the dog for a walk...
Don't forget the take a backup first.
Homebrew i5-8400+GTX1080 Cinnamon 19.0, 3 x Thinkpad T430 Cinnamon 19.0, i7-3632 , i5-3320, i5-3210, Thinkpad T60 19.0 Mate
barth90
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Re: Ready to get away from dual boot. What's the best approach?

Post by barth90 »

Thank you Andy for the clarification. Yes, I know it will take time. I had to move my partitions once before because of some unallocated space in between partitions.
Timeshift and data backups are up to date.
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