partition setup on dual boot 13.2 and Windows 8.1

I am setting up a dual boot system on my new ASUS GL551JM laptop. I want
to try and prepare things correctly before I get going. I read through
Dayfinger’s thorough posts (thank you, Dayfinger!!) and this has made a
huge difference in improving my understanding as I get started.

One of the questions I have has to do with partitioning. On this thread
he recommended erasing the entire hard disk and re-installing Windows
8.1 first.

I am wondering if I need to do that. The partition setup on the Windows
machine shows that the ESP partition is only 100MB, and on this page, Rod Smith recommends having an ESP
of 550MiB. He says it can be smaller if it is already there, but it
seems like 100MB might be TOO small, if you just compare it with the
recommendation of 550MiB. So if 100MB is too small, then it becomes
absolutely necessary to reinstall windows and make sure the ESP is the
right size when that is done. (at least I don’t know how to shift around
the partitions in order to free up some room).

So that is really my main question - is the 100MB ESP that Windows 8.1
set up large enough to accommodate the dual boot I want with openSUSE
and Windows?

Then the 2nd question I have has to do more with windows, but it is very
relevant to anyone who wants to set up a dual boot system with openSUSE.
The question is, how big a partition do I need to devote to the Windows
OS (meaning the C drive only)? I am planning to knock it down to 80GB
from where it currently is, at 372 GB. That was sufficient for my
previous laptop which had Windows 7 on it, which I almost never used.
But I am not that familiar with Windows 8 and don’t know how much the
system really needs for a basic infrequently used setup of Windows 8.

So in the opinions of the group, is 80GB sufficient?

And then my last question has to do with the size of the root partition
for 13.2. It used to be somewhat “standard” that you would set up a 20gb
root partition, and that is what I have on my 13.1 system. Is that still
considered a good number to go by, or would it be better to bump it up
to 40? This will be the first time I have used btfrs for my root
partition, so I don’t know if I should expect something different. The
hard drive is 1TB, so I have plenty of room.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Box #1: 13.1 | KDE 4.12 | AMD Phenom IIX4 | 64 | 16GB
Box #2: 13.1 | KDE 4.12 | AMD Athlon X3 | 64 | 4GB
Laptop: 13.1 | KDE 4.12 | Core i7-2620M | 64 | 8GB

I installed Windows 8.1 on a separate drive on my system. It is Win Pro and I have added Gimp and one other program.

Here is the system as gparted shows it:

With 1 T of space, I think I’d give both Windows and / some more room unless you keep a lot of video files and the like.


Not a whole lot goes into the ESP unless you plan dozens of OS’s then 100 meg seem reasonable

Windows size well I think that min is around 24 gig ± Then you need space for your programs. and their data and any data you plan to store like movies mp3 etc. 80 gig sounds fine if you really don’t plan on much media stuff

20 gig is still fine if you use ext4 if you plan on using the new default BTRFS the you will need to double that 40 gig is the new recommended for default install. The reason is a feature called snapper that periodically takes snapshots of the file system this can eat up a fair amount of space and to make matters more confusing the space snapper uses does not show in the standard utilities so the standard utilities can say you have plenty of space but you are flat out. Also grub does not know how to write to BTRFS so that can introduce some odd behavior . I recommend a separate ext2 or 4 boot partition (about 500 meg) which will be sure you won’t run into some of the gotchas BTRFS introduces. Or you can just use ext 4 which is a perfectly good file system.

If you are planning to go BTRFS instead of ext4, then I would definitely (if doing it myself) would create a 40-Gig root partition (/), mostly because you have a full terrabyte to play with. If you plan on using Snapper (I don’t), I might even go to a 50-Gig.

For Windows, since you have so much space, why not just an even 100?

Of course, if you want to pare the Windows partition down, just simply look at how much is already taken up by the current Windows install, add about 10-Gig or so extra (15 or 20, if you feel more comfortable with that, but I would think it unnecessary), and pare down to that.

As for the ESP, I really cannot make an informed comment.

Most important of all:

Have fun.:wink:

On 02/10/2015 07:26 PM, Fraser Bell wrote:

Thanks for all the suggestions, hints, etc. I have it installed now and
am running in opensuse 13.2, but I haven’t tried to boot into windows
again. I am going to start that as my next event to make sure it works.
I am having some trouble with my nvidia optimus integration, but I will
start a new thread on that.

I remember there was something that had to be done in Windows to make
sure it didn’t try and force off the grub boot loader, something with
bcdedit in Windows. I will set that up and see how it works.

You do need to turn off the fast boot option. It leaves the Windows file system in unkown state so you can not use Windows partitions from Linux with it on. May effect booting also.


I.e. turn off the ‘fast boot’ of windows (not openSUSE, which doesn’t have such an option).

Good luck

On 02/10/2015 07:16 PM, gogalthorp wrote:

Well, after thinking it over, I decided not to use btrfs, and just went
with ext4 for my root partitions. There is a limit to how much I can
learn at one time while also living a very busy life, so I will have to
put off btrfs for a future date.

Thanks everyone for your help!

Box #1: 13.1 | KDE 4.12 | AMD Phenom IIX4 | 64 | 16GB
Box #2: 13.1 | KDE 4.12 | AMD Athlon X3 | 64 | 4GB
Laptop #1: 13.1 | KDE 4.12 | Core i7-2620M | 64 | 8GB
Laptop #2: 13.2 | KDE 4.14 | Core i7-4710HQ | 64 | 16GB