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Thread: Dual booting OpenSuSE on my gateway

  1. #1
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    Default Dual booting OpenSuSE on my gateway

    Here's the thing. My gateway provides a 12.7 GB hidden partition for system recovery and a 100MB hidden partition whose properties are ACTIVE and primary partition. But my windows 7 is installed on the third primary partition, which has a BOOT property. In my opinion, the machine read the 100MB partition first and then it was lead to the partition which windows 7 is installed.
    Now I want to install OpenSuSE on my logical drive(I shrinked the windows 7 partition and created several logical ones). What should I do to prevent those hidden partition being destroyed and at the same time I can still dual boot with my recovery function available?

  2. #2
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    Smile Re: Dual booting OpenSuSE on my gateway

    grubstreet
    Here's the thing. My gateway provides a 12.7 GB hidden partition for system recovery and a 100MB hidden partition whose properties are ACTIVE and primary partition. But my windows 7 is installed on the third primary partition, which has a BOOT property. In my opinion, the machine read the 100MB partition first and then it was lead to the partition which windows 7 is installed.
    Now I want to install OpenSuSE on my logical drive(I shrinked the windows 7 partition and created several logical ones). What should I do to prevent those hidden partition being destroyed and at the same time I can still dual boot with my recovery function available?


    The 100 MB Partition does boot Windows 7. Hidden Partitions still take up space and reduce the number of usable partitions. Here is some information about partition setup and a final suggested setup based on your comments:

    Each hard drive can have up to four PRIMARY partitions, any of which could be marked active and bootable. No matter what you might hear, only one of the first four primary partitions can be booted from. That means you can boot from Primary partitions 1, 2, 3 or 4 and that is all. In order to boot openSUSE, you must load openSUSE and the grub boot loader into one of the first four partitions. Or, your second choice is to load the grub boot loader into the MBR (Master Boot Record) at the start of the disk. The MBR can be blank, like a new disk, it can contain a Windows partition booting code or generic booting code to boot the active partition 1, 2, 3, or 4. Or, as stated before, it can contain the grub boot loader. Why load grub into the MBR then? You do this so that you can "boot" openSUSE from a logical partition, numbered 5 or higher, which is not normally possible. In order to have more than four partitions, one of them (and only one can be assigned as extended) must be a extended partition. It is called an Extended Primary Partition, a container partition, it can be any one of the first four and it can contain one or more logical partitions within. Anytime you see partition numbers 5, 6 or higher for instance, they can only occur inside of the one and only Extended Primary partition you could have.

    What does openSUSE want as far as partitions? It needs at minimum a SWAP partition and a "/" partition where all of your software is loaded. Further, it is recommended you create a separate /home partition, which makes it easier to upgrade or reload openSUSE without losing all of your settings. So, that is three more partitions you must add to what you have now. What must you do to load and boot openSUSE from an external hard drive? Number one, you must be able to select your external hard drive as the boot drive in your BIOS setup. Number two, you need to make sure that the external hard drive, perhaps /dev/sdb, is listed as the first hard drive in your grub device.map file and listed as drive hd0. I always suggest that you do not load grub into the MBR, but rather into the openSUSE "/" root primary partition which means a primary number of 1, 2, 3 or 4. If number one is used, then that will be out. You will mark the openSUSE partition as active for booting and finally you must load generic booting code into the MBR so that it will boot the openSUSE partition. I suggest a partition like this:

    0. /dev/sda, Load MBR with generic booting code
    1. /dev/sda1, Hidden Primary (FAT32 ?) Partition for System Restore
    2. /dev/sda2, Primary NTFS Partition 100 MB (Was marked Active for booting - This IS the partition you must load from your Grub menu to start Windows)
    3. /dev/sda3, Primary NTFS Partition for Windows 7
    4. /dev/sda4, Extended Primary Partition, A Logical Partition Container loaded with Grub and Marked Active for booting.
    5. /dev/sdb5, SWAP Partition
    6. Primary EXT4 "/" main software for openSUSE
    7. /dev/sda6 /home, Your main home directory (Rest of the disk)

    So, you would need to use custom partitioning to create this setup. Look through this all and ask any questions that you like.

    Thank You,
    My Blog: https://forums.opensuse.org/blogs/jdmcdaniel3/

    Software efficiency halves every 18 months, thus compensating for Moore's Law

    Its James again from Austin, Texas

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Dual booting OpenSuSE on my gateway

    I was moved because I have never received such a detailed answer! Thank you very much.
    Then, according to your suggestion, what I should do is install the OpenSuSE on a logical drive (I now have 3 logical drives which are under one big drive set and another 3 primary partition, including that system recovery, active 100MB and partition C where windows 7 is installed), and then install the grub of OpenSuSE on the 100MB active partition? (There are only 30MB free)
    With installing the OpenSuSE on that little bootable partition I can choose whether to boot windows 7 or OpenSuSE without unabling my system recovery function?
    As for that /home stuff, I will take care.
    Thx.

  4. #4
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    Smile Re: Dual booting OpenSuSE on my gateway

    I was moved because I have never received such a detailed answer! Thank you very much.
    Then, according to your suggestion, what I should do is install the OpenSuSE on a logical drive (I now have 3 logical drives which are under one big drive set and another 3 primary partition, including that system recovery, active 100MB and partition C where windows 7 is installed), and then install the grub of OpenSuSE on the 100MB active partition? (There are only 30MB free)
    With installing the OpenSuSE on that little bootable partition I can choose whether to boot windows 7 or OpenSuSE without unabling my system recovery function?
    As for that /home stuff, I will take care.
    Thx
    You are very welcome for my answer and help. I have been using openSUSE Linux since version 10.0 and helping out here is this forum for about a year. I have learned a very lot here and try to put that help back out for others such as your self.

    Now, as to your suggested setup, why not, in the format I used above, why not specify the partitions that you have now. The /dev/sda is your first hard disk while the number is the partition number. You can use Windows to get the size and type of known partitions, though not for EXT3 or EXT4 partition types used by Linux.

    Be aware that many do not know that you can set a Extended Primary Partition, which just contains other Logical partitions, as bootable (since it is still a primary partition) or that you can load Grub into it. It does not seem logical, but it does work. Further, we have heard from at least one user that it is not advisable to use the Windows program to partition such a disk setup later, as Windows thinks it is invalid. Since you can indeed boot your computer from it, it is surely not invalid.

    I would like to put out another suggestion. If you have not yet loaded Windows 7 Service Pack 1, now is the time to do so before you install openSUSE. To know why, you can read through the following thread I started last year.

    openSUSE Dual Booting with Windows 7 AND Loading Service Pack 1 for Windows 7

    Thank You,
    My Blog: https://forums.opensuse.org/blogs/jdmcdaniel3/

    Software efficiency halves every 18 months, thus compensating for Moore's Law

    Its James again from Austin, Texas

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