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Linux and NTFS :P

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kd7aze

Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
Heya,

Looking to do an install of Linux on my main system as a dual boot. The problem is, my main boot is XP, with NTFS. Question is, save a complete format/re-install, is there a known way to either use Linux with NTFS or to change the formatting of the HD to Fat32?

Thanks to ya!

Kid
 

Jeff Bolton

Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2001
Location
Middle Peninsula Virginia
if you have your whole hard disk formatted as NTFS, i'm guessing it would be easier to do a reformat and leave some of space for a linux parition and swap drive. i think i have read that it is possible to install it like that, but not worth it even if it is possible. but if you do have some unpartitioned space left, then it should be easy to install...just throw the discs in, install it, and be sure to install a boot loaded like LiLo. as long as windows is installed first and you have some free space, you won't have any problems. any questions? probably, lol...that's what we're here for!

jeff
 

David

Forums Super Moderator
Joined
Feb 20, 2001
You could use partition magic to resize the partition (ie smaller) and make two partitions for linux, which it will format itself. Linux can read from, but not write to, NTFS.
 

Wa11y

Senior Thread Hijacker
Joined
May 17, 2001
Location
Six inches to the right.
David said:
You could use partition magic to resize the partition (ie smaller) and make two partitions for linux, which it will format itself. Linux can read from, but not write to, NTFS.

Is this ability native to linux, or do you have to do something special to read an NTFS partition from linux?

And am I the only one who thinks NTFS is nothing but trouble?
 

VaTechHokies

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2002
Location
Northern Virginia
If you get the newest version of partition magic you can re-size the current drives. Just leave whatever space you decide to resize unformatted (partition magic will say it is unformatted, when in reality is was probably ntfs..no need to do anything else after resizing the drive). When I did this (I had XP and loaded redhat 7.1) I left about 6 gigs free for RedHat (sorry, I don't use it all that much). Redhat is really easy to install after that. For more info on dual booting you should visit thissite.

The easiest way to dual boot is to have XP loaded first, then install Linux and have lilo written to the MBR. Read more about it on that link though. It only takes 3 lines in the lilo.conf file to be able to get back to XP.
 
OP
K

kd7aze

Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
OK. It's looking more and more like I will need to re-format/partitian the HD, as there's only one partition, and it's all NTFS, AND I don't own partition magic. :D

Next question. I'm assuming (god I love that word, it makes a total a__ out of you and me) that Windows can't read OS/3 file system (after all, it's not windows made :D ). So, if I want to use files on both systems, I will likely have to create a FAT32 partition, right?

So, I have a Windows partition (512 mb should do well), a /boot (again 512), a /swap (going for the full 2 gigs) and then a /root which would be the file system they could both use.

Sound about right?

Kid
 

VaTechHokies

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2002
Location
Northern Virginia
If you are going to reload windows, just create your windows partitions that you want, and then just leave some extra space on the end of the drive. When you are installing linux, manually set the partitions like you have said in the previous post. Linux will identify that unpartitioned space you left on the end of the drive.

One thing though...if you have a lot of ram, you might not want to make such a big swap file partition. This won't increase the speed or efficiency of the OS...I shouldn't say won't, but you'll be wasting a LOT of space that never gets used.
 
OP
K

kd7aze

Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
VaTechHokies said:
One thing though...if you have a lot of ram, you might not want to make such a big swap file partition. This won't increase the speed or efficiency of the OS...I shouldn't say won't, but you'll be wasting a LOT of space that never gets used.

Hmmm. Just going off what is presented by Red Hat for doubling your RAM for a disc swap. Not recommended?

Kid
 

VaTechHokies

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2002
Location
Northern Virginia
Wally--
Its actually possible to read and write to an NTFS partition using linux. You have to do a little tweaking in order to enable it though. Reading NTFS is a little shaky sometimes. Writing on the otherhand can be pretty dangerous to your NTFS partition, but it is possible. Check out this link for a little info. Hope this helps
 
OP
K

kd7aze

Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
Wa11y said:
And am I the only one who thinks NTFS is nothing but trouble?
In this case I would, but if you just run windowz, it's faster, more secure, and quite a bit more reliable in the face of a forced shutdown.

Outside windows, :p

Kid
 

VaTechHokies

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2002
Location
Northern Virginia
Kid--
Just read up on the new 7.2 and it seems...at least if my memory serves me right...that Red Hat changed their stance. You are in fact right that you can double the amount of RAM. In my install guide for 7.1 they said that large swap files were good, but if you had a lot of ram, it wouldn't boost performance. But it seems liek they are telling everyone now that the swap file should be double the amount of ram in system, especially if you ever intend on installing more ram. Sorry about my goof :rolleyes:
 
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K

kd7aze

Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
NP.

If there's one thing Linux is, it's a learning experience. :D

Kid
 

Jeff Bolton

Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2001
Location
Middle Peninsula Virginia
i have 512mb of ram with redhat 7.2 and i made a 1024 meg swap space, even though i've never even touched it as far as i know. i don't even have windows installed right now though, and i have about 14 gigs of unpartitioned space on my disk. :) so i don't have to worry about how much space my swap takes up.

jeff
 

Beelzebub

Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2002
Location
Irvine, California
I have 256 MB of swap and 256 of RAM, and when running my system with about 10 programs running (under KDE 3), I monitored the swap space usage and it said there was none even being used.

I can see the benefit of a huge swap partition, but in my case it doesn't seem needed. Seems to me the redhat manual was written for those with 1) less ram that what is common now and/or 2) those who will be using it as a server (since more theoretically will help).

I only use my machine as a desktop with no server services installed. If this is the case with your install, I think your swap size is overkill. After all, how often do you even use 512 MB of RAM? Then again, you can never have too much RAM :D
 
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K

kd7aze

Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2001
Complete, total, utter failure.

**sigh**

Installed Windowz on a nice fat 2gig partition. Booted fine.

Installed linux on partitions larger than recommended, installation went great, recognized all my hardware (video card and monitor included), and completed the install with no problem

Rebooted, and boom.

Linux halts the system with a CRC error, and windows won't load, just gives a couple of normal MS errors (read: non-discriptive) and reboots.

**sigh**

Tried smoking the entire dual boot idea, in favor of just running linux (after trying to re-install Winxp, and failure due to upgrade edition and not sensing the previous install), and again the installation went well, but the same error on startup.

Trying a Corel distro, and it freezes up, and appearantly doesn't recognize my monitor (flickering login screen, which doesn't login).

Next plan of attack. Clear all partitions, install windowz on the first sector (it wasn't in this last install), and try RedHat again. Not sure what the problem is, but I may be in contact with RedHat here soon. Very annoying. Or, I could just spam this board with questions! :rolleyes:

:mad: Kid

P.S. Would dumping my overclock help linux?
 

Samurai_Punch

Member
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
CP Howze, S. Korea
There are kernel modules that support NTFS (read and write however being on the risky side). I don't know how well linux supports read/write of NTFS as my NTFS partitions are on a Highpoint RAID controller which i don't have support for (using a dual P2 machine).

So far the most simplistic thing for you to do would to install Windoze on the first partition (so it writes to the MBR) and use a floppy to boot Linux,

Or something similar to that (which i do) is have linux on it's own hdd and install lilo/grub on that drive's MBR, and use your computer's BIOS to switch the boot order -so yo don't have to use a floppy-

Hope it's something you can use.
 

XWRed1

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2001
Linux can read just fine from ntfs partitions, but doesn't honor any permissioning schemes.

Writing is still considered experimental and dangerous.

From what I've heard, it can write ok, they just don't understand the journal format yet, so everything is fine until you have Windows try to use that partition again - then it craps the bed.