Newb question

Hi all, Just downloaded v11.1. I want to “test drive” opensuse. I have 2 SATA drives on my computer. C with windows on it and the other Z which is empty.

Can I install Opensuse on Z drive and just pick which drive I want to boot, be it using windows or opensuse?

I am by far a computer person

I want to avoid messing up my windows drive until I am ready to make a decision on what OS I am going to use.

I searched and couldn’t find this exact situation so thats why I ask.

Thanks in advance.

Follow this guide. It was written for 11.0 but the same principles apply. Be methodical.

Partitioning/Install Guide - openSUSE Forums

Thanks for the fast reply. Now let me see if I understand this.

From what I read and how I understand it, There is no way to only install Linux on my 2nd HD and leave the first strictly for XP? I have to incorpotate some Linux file or procedure of some sort on my XP drive?

Or did I miss somethinng?

You can install openSUSE on the disk labeled as Z just fine, however since you can see it in windows it’s probably partitioned as NTFS (or fat32) and openSUSE will need to repartition it to ext3 (or some other linux compatible filesystem).
You wont be able to access the disk from windows anymore though, and any data that might currently be on it will be lost.

Also take note that under linux harddisk partitions aren’t labeled as C, D, E, F etc. But as SDA1, SDA2 SDB1 etc. Where the letter A = the first disk, B = the second disk and the 1 / 2 / 1 are the partitions number on the disk.
So HDA1 = Hardisk A (the first) Partion 1 (the first).
If it’s indeed 2 different physical harddisks then you’ll probably see the installer informing you that SDA1 has windows and you’ll want to use SDB1 for openSUSE.

You’ll probably need to edit the suggested partition setup openSUSE gives you, and you’ll want to leave the disk / partition that has windows on it alone.

If you’re not certain on how to approach this just start the installer, and report the partition suggestion it does in this thread and we’ll be able to be of better help.

Oh right obligatory backup all your (important) files before doing anything story:
Backup your files first!

You can absolutely have XP on drive 1 and openSUSE (OS) on drive 2
The only thing that changes is that grub is installed so that you get a boot menu so can choose between OS and XP
During the installation point the installer to the 2nd drive and choose to use the whole drive.
It will suggest a swap of ca. 1 GB, ca. 30% for / (which holds the system files and settings) and the rest for /home (which is for user files and settings)

Make sure you back up your important files first just in case…


Ok thanks all. I emptied the second drive that I want to have OS on so there is nothing on there that would be lost.

Good but i would still backup the stuff on you XP drive


That was done was well.

OK here is what the installer suggest I do

Shrink Windows Partition /dev/sdb1 77.69g
Create extended partition /dev/sdb2 155.19g
Create swap partition /dev/sdb5 2.01g
Create root partition /devsdb6 20g with ext 3
Create partition /dev/sdb7 133.18g for /home with ext 3
Set mount point of /dev/sda2 to /windows/c

From what I put together…anythng labled SDB is going on my empty 2nd drive and the mount point is going on my XP or C drive?

Am I on the right track?

Actually it says you have windows on sdb and sda
Shrink Windows Partition /dev/sdb1 77.69g
Set mount point of /dev/sda2 to /windows/c

You need to sort out what’s what