Need help with partitioning on New Install

Hello There,

I am trying to install OpenSuse 13.2 (64 bit) on my second computer which is a Desktop PC (legacy Bios) 4 years old.

THe PC has 2 hard drives, the first has Windows 8.1 C drive as well as a data partition (Also NTFS) this is sda

The second hard drive (sdb) has 204 GB of unpartioned free space in the beginning and then an NTFS partition of 727GB that holds backups.

I would like to install OpenSuse on the 204GB free space. I went thru the install and got to the part where I choose the partitions but OpenSuse insists on wanting to take over the entire sdb hard drive and wipe out the NTFS partition. What can I do from this screen to create a /home partition (xfs), a root partition (btrfs) and a swap partition on the 204 GB of free space?

You have to select “sdb” (not “sdb1”), then click “Add” to add a partition.

Alternatively, use “fdisk” from the command line (boot your install media to rescue mode). If you can partition as you want in “fdisk”, then get back to expert mode during install and tell the installer which partitions to use (select a partition, right click and use “edit” to change the suggested use and to specify where to mount, format etc.)


Thanks for your fast response. I actually did select sdb in the GUI but when I clicked the add button it told me that it was not possible to add or edit the partition and if I did it would result in the data being purged.

I am not so good with command line fdisk commands but do you think I could boot in using a LiveCD from a different linux distro and then use gParted to create the partitions?

And if this would work please advise me which LiveCD is best (one that will support brtfs for example)

I tried to boot using both Fedora KDE Spin Live CD as well as Kali Linux live CD and got errors where I could not complete the boot process.

I tried Knoppix live CD as well but the size was 4.3GB and my flash drive is only 4GB so it would not fit!

EDIT: Also I have tried SystemRescueCD and got errors at boot. With this finicky desktop PC pretty much it poo-poos any distro other than OpenSuse

There appears to be one large partition taking all the space you have to resize or remove it to have free space to add more.

Note that data should be backed up if you want to preserve it in case of accidents. if it is important don’t mess with the drive until you have backed it up just in case.

I’m not sure about “best”. But I have been using the opensuse 13.2 live rescue CD.

It has “fdisk”, “gdisk”, “gparted”. However, I ran into a problem with “gparted”. To get that to work properly, I logged out from the XFCE desktop, logged into Icewm, did “su” in a terminal then started “gparted” from the root command line in that terminal (xterm) window.

You might want to install “gptfdisk-fixparts” (the “fixparts” command). If you use it on a CD, I guess that installs to RAM and will disappear on reboot. If you use the live rescue media from a USB, then it probably installs on the persistent data partition so will be there in future. I guess “zypper in gptfdisk-fixparts” from a root command line would install it.

Then run “fixparts” (as root). It can fix some kinds of partition table problems. From what you describe, you might be having such problems. That might be why the Yast partitioner doesn’t want to just create new partitions in the free space.

Ok guys, thanks. I will roll up my sleaves and give it a shot (after backing up the data just in case)

Can’t risk losing all that p0rn… err, I mean corporate data. LoL

Is the default settings to use xfs for the /home and btrfs for / ?

Is this the best configuration?


Is this the best configuration?

Only you can decide that. Personally, I went with “ext4” for both.

I would suggest you download & burn this:

Then launch Partition Magic.

BTW: If you seem reasonably certain that you have free space on the drive before the NTFS partition:

Is it a 1-TB drive?

You have 727 of it in a partition.

If it is a “750” drive, then that is probably all the space there is.

But, if you do have a 1-TB drive, then something does not jibe, since the partitioner shows only one full 727 partition with no free space.

You need to settle this question before you proceed.

It may have something to do with drive geometry that needs to be dealt with first.

I did not suggest that because he was unable to allocate space with “parted” (as used by the opensuse installer). That suggests partition table problems, which “gparted” won’t like either.

Thanks guys, in the end I just backed up the data to a removable USB drive and told OpenSuse installer to just use the entire /sdb for Linux

That worked fine and resolved the problem

Thanks again for your assistance

Yes, quite likely. But, that would confirm our suspicions, plus it might give an additional clue about what is going on. There are also several good additional partition tools on this latest Hiren’s disk. However, it is now a moot point, since the OP has appeared to successfully do very similar to what I believe you – and I – were eventually going to tell him to do.:wink:

Glad to hear that. Enjoy.:slight_smile: