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Ubuntu guided partitioning

Here is how I did my partition manually during Ubuntu installation. I just follow instructions on the menu. I must say that Ubuntu team has a lot to improves for the partition tool menu descriptions and the installation menu instructions in general. The overall menu is fine only the instruction is not as clear as the older Red Hat installation tool or Slackware setup tool. I am not sure if this is the correct way of doing partition as Ubuntu would recommend, but it works perfectly.

So here are the steps procedure of how I do Ubuntu hard disk partitioning. If you are planning to manually partition your hard disk, these partition steps I did may be a guide for you.

Step 1 - Partition manually
During the installation process, you'll come into the partition hard disk step (in step 13 or so) which will guide you through partitioning your disks. This is the Ubuntu partition tool. There are four partition methods in the menu.
  1. Guided - Use entire disk
  2. Guided - Use entire disk and set up LVM
  3. Guided - Use entire disk and set up encrypted LVM
  4. Manual
If you have provided the whole hard disk for Ubuntu, there should be no problem. Just choose any of number 1 to number 3 menu. If you have some reason not to use the whole hard disk, maybe you a dual booting or define your own partition and size, then choose number four menu, Manual, to manually partitioning your hard disk.

Step 2 - Choose a free space to create partition.
On this step, Ubuntu partition tool shows overview of your currently configured partitions and mount points. So now choose a free space or a hard disk for Ubuntu using arrow up/down key and press enter to select. You are going to create partition manually on this free space or hard disk.

Step 3 - Create new empty partition
You won't get this step if you choose empty space on already partition hard disk. On other words, you already have other operating system in your hard disk and you create a partition and reserved it for Ubuntu. And if you chose that partition in the step before, then you'll skip to the next step. If you chose hard disk and there is no partition on the hard disk, then you have to create a new empty partition. You'll see the previous step again but this time with preview of the new empty space you've created. Now, choose the empty space and enter to continue to the next step.

Step 4 - How to use this free space
This step is a menu with three options to choose. I just choose the first option, create a new partition.

Step 5 - Create new partition size
Now you can specify the partition size of your choice. Here's an example of confusing instruction in Ubuntu tool. The hint is using percentage (20%, 30%, etc) and in the menu it shows 20 GB. That's fine. I can use percentage, no problem. But can I use 100 MB for example? Put that also in the hint would help new Ubuntu user in my opinion. Most Linux distributions have this, and windows XP too.

My first partition size is 100 MB. This is for /boot partition. I just try to see it'll work or not.

Step 6 - Choose partition type for the new partition
There are two options, Primary and Logical. I chose Primary.

Step 7 - Choose location for the new partition
You have to choose where do you want this partition to be created, at the beginning or at the end of the available space. I plan to make this partition a /boot partition, so I chose at the beginning.

Step 8 - Edit partition setting
Here is where you can set or edit the partition setting. Here is what I know:
  • Use as: Choose file system type. Swap option is here.
  • Mount point: Choose mount point. /, /boot, /usr, /var, etc.
  • Mount options: I am not sure. Just leave default.
  • Label: Perhaps a label like in windows xp? I am not sure. We set the mount point already.
  • Reserved blocks: Perhaps when your partition reach maximum, it can use this reserved space. I am not sure. Just leave default.
  • Typical usage: I am not sure. Just leave default.
  • Bootable flag: The bootable partition. Set this to On to what partition your boot data is stored. In my case, it's the /boot partition I just created.
That's all the important steps in setting up Ubuntu partitions manually. Choose the Done setting up the partition menu when you're done setting up your partition. This will take you back to the first menu. So just continue the procedure to create another partition.

Step 9 - Create a swap partition
Follow the procedure above and create a swap partition.

Step 10 - Finish partitioning and write changes to disk
When you done creating and configuring your partitions, choose this option in the first menu, the overview partition page to continue the installation. Just check the partitions properly and only proceed when you are completely sure that's what you want.

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