Partitioning Question

Right now I have my system broken up into:

  1. Primary WindowsXP partition
  2. Primary ext3 partition mounted to /
  3. Primary ext3 partition mounted to /home
  4. Primary linux-swap partition

I’m trying to mess around with Gentoo as well, but when I tried creating a new partition, it says that I cannot have more than 4 primary partitions. Can I remove my linux-swap and change that to a logical partition, then create a new primary for Gentoo?

I don’t want to make anything else logical because I might have to resize them later (and I don’t want to lose any data right now).


Changing/moving partitions is not for the faint hearted. If it were me and I REALLY wanted to mess with another distro I would start again. In future remember the limit and plan ahead - create extended partitons from the primary.

I thought long and hard when I built this machine 12 months ago, about just how many partitions I needed.
For the moment I am using Vitual Box for all my messing!!

You can delete the swap. But you will need a swap to share between the two distros, and you’ll need at least one partition to house Gentoo. So in the place of swap you would create an extended partition and in that you would put swap and the Gentoo partition/s. Note that would likely have to shrink your existing partitions to make room for the quite big extended partition and it’s contained swap and Gentoo partitions.

What I did is this, I resized a partition and then created an extended partition to house that smaller partition and the swap. I have space unallocated now where I want to install Gentoo to but now Gentoo can’t read my disk. It sees the entire disk as unallocated! I don’t have this problem in openSUSE. What’s getting me is Gentoo worked before (I’ve written on Gentoo’s forums as well). I’m running ‘testdisk’ right now so hopefully that will solve my problems.