OpenSUSE 11.2 AFTER Windows-7

Bought a new HP laptop for Christmas, with 500G HD. Thought I’d be able to use a chunk for OpenSUSE.

Alas, HP has already created four partitions on the drive, so even though there’s plenty of room, there’s no space in the partition table.

Has anyone else been through this? Which partition can safely be dumped to allow me to install OpenSUSE, and how could it be backed up, if necessary? Only one partition shows in Win, and the others don’t seem to want to boot.

TIA :slight_smile:

I know what I would do
But it would too scary for you.

We would need to see

fdisk -l

do that from a su terminal when you have booted a live cd

You can probably safely remove one or more partition/s

One of the other moderators here has a HP, I think. He may have some input.

Those other two are generally a utility partition for restoring your
system and the other will be the image. Normally you should also be
able to create a set of restore DVDs from the win 7 system? If not ask
HP how to obtain a set. Then you should be able to safely remove and

Cheers Malcolm °¿° (Linux Counter #276890)
SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 11 (x86_64) Kernel
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That limitation should be for Primary partitions. You could see about installing openSUSE on an Extended partiton.

An Extended partition is a container, after carving out a section as the Extended partition you then carve out the partitions inside of that unless you are using LVM partitions.

What you say is correct, but as he has already four (4) partitions, how could he create an extended one?

I guess to shrink the existing partitions and make the extended partition in the freed space?

I dunno… didn’t think that far ahead.:stuck_out_tongue:

You can’t have more then 4 primary partitions.


But if you add an Extended partition, that doesn’t have to be in a Primary partition, so you could have primary/primary/primary/primary/extended

You may have to shrink primary1…4 to make space for the extended though.

As you said yourself, you can not have more then four partitions. One of those (preferable the last, but you MUST not have four, it can be P, P, E) can be an extended (and is thus also a Primary). Then you can create Logical partitions inside the Extended. They start with #5 also when you have:
#1 Primary
#2 Primary
#3 Extended
#5 Logical
#6 Logical

Read SDB:Basics of partitions, filesystems, mount points - openSUSE.

When you shrink one of four, you still have four. So now you have space you can not use at all! Nice advice to a fellow openSUSE user :wink:

Very often the fourth partition is a data partition, sometimes even labeled DATA. Seen that on HP, seen that on Acer. Usually there’s nothing on that one, so it could be removed from Win7. That would free up space and give room for an extended partition with logical ones in it for openSUSE’s /, /home, swap

Heck, I’m trying to do an openSUSE installation at home (if the computer can stay working long enough) so I’ll have to test this all out to satisfy my curiosity.

No need, it’s:

4 Primary and Extended are Primary. That’s it.

You realy mean you are going to try to wrench 5 different possibilities out of a 2 bit field? Wishing you success. And then on to the invention of the perpetuum mobile rotfl! rotfl! rotfl!

dragonbite wrote:

> But if you add an Extended partition, that doesn’t have to be in a
> Primary partition, so you could have
> primary/primary/primary/primary/extended
> right?
> You may have to shrink primary1…4 to make space for the extended
> though.

Not quite. There are 4 slots for partition definition in the MBR. If you
create an extended partition, the head of that chain has to go in the MBR
table so you wind up with 3 primaries and what Linux sees as a container
for extended partitions. The map chain to the actual logical partitions
starts at the MBR and is followed down from that to the actual EBRs.

Will Honea

Well if windows 7 on your system has four partitions, most likely one is the primary and the others are probably smaller backup partitions.
Just remove them, I had a similar scheme myself when I got this computer with XP and I removed its extra partitions without issues.

Actually, at least with my install, Windows 7 takes up two partitions. The first one (which is only 100MB) is needed to boot, then the second one contains the OS. I’m guessing the 3rd and 4th partitions are used for a recovery partition, and backup partition (windows will show a C: and D: drive where D: is labeled backup), respectively. The only way to know for sure is to boot a live cd and post the results of fdisk -l from a terminal.

Take Care,


Image one partition and delete the sucker! create an extended partition in its place install linux there. And if the image is required put that on another logical partition, there may be a hptools partition start with that.

If I was a skeptic I would be wondering if Microsoft offered a discount to companies for using all 4 primary partitions!

It’s a plot by Microsoft to keep people from easily dual-booting with Linux? :open_mouth:

I really do not know what it is! But why all 4 Primary partitions? Just leave one Primary, And Install is simple for everyone.