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Repartition Hard Drive with Dual OS and Not Losing Data

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After spending more time tinkering, I think I've figured out some things.

As discussed and learned, I can't have more than four primary partitions. This drive has a 86.3MB partition, 15GB partition (Ubuntu), 90.82GB partition (WinXP), and a "media direct" that's 2.5GB; along with a 357GB unallocated (the unused portion of the new hard drive).

The issue I'm experiencing: I need to delete the 2.5GB partition to give me a free partition to expand the Ubuntu and WinXP, however, when I do this, I get a .dll error when I try starting WinXP. I know this because I deleted the partition and then went to boot XP without doing anything else. If I don't delete the partition, I can run 'check' (I'm using system recovery off a thumbdrive), whereas if I delete the 2.5GB partition first, I get an error when trying to run 'check'.

Now the issue is: The order of partitions is the 86MB, WinXP, Ubuntu, the 2.5GB partition, and the 357GB unused (see attached). It will not allow me to expand the Ubuntu partition into the 357GB unallocated because the 2.5GB is in the way. If I delete the 2.5GB partition, then I can expand Ubuntu (and move it towards the end leaving the proceeding section open to moving XP), but, if I delete the 2.5GB, then it causes the XP partition to give me an error when I try expanding it into the 357GB section (and no longer boot or allow System Recovery to do a 'check').

I don't know why deleting a 2.5GB partition affects XP with both trying to move the partition and booting XP, but it does.

My question is: how do I get around this issue?

I tried allocating the 357GB partition and rebooting System Rescue thinking it will change the drive order allowing me to move Ubuntu and XP, but it didn't work.

Let's try this. I created a 1G loop file and partitioned it with 3 primary and 1 extended partition. We then select the extended partition and select "Resize"

Expand that out to the end of the drive:

Select the logical partition inside the extended partition and "Move/Resize" :

Slide the partition to the end :

Select the extended partition again -> Move/Resize :

Grab the left hand size and slide it across to the start of the logical partition :

Select the 3rd partition and move it :

Select the 2nd partition and resize it :

Voila :

Do not try and shrink any partition, only expand.

You will have to re-configure the bootloaders when you move stuff around. Testdisk is good for that. When it comes to the XP bootloader you're on your own, but I've certainly done it in the dim dark past.

I tinkered with this yesterday, but began losing track. I had to understand what a extended and logical partition was and didn't research it ahead of time; now I understand after reading.

I'll try again over the weekend. From what I can tell, you're placing stuff inside the extended to make room for more partitions. After you expand the other partitions into the free space, but this messes up the bootloaders (something I don't know anything about - but have a concept of why they'd get messed up). This process would be easier if I could just move the 2.5GB partition to the opposite side of the unallocated (or at least I believe it would be easier since I have plenty of flexibility after deleting it).

On mine, I don't understand what that 2.5GB partition is, however, it seems to be important enough because WinXP doesn't boot after I delete that partition; nor can I move the XP partition in System Recovery.

- Expand the extended partition to use all available space
- Move the 2.5G partition to the end of the expanded partition
- Shrink the expanded partition by nudging the start of it up against the 2.5G partition.

At this point you'll have moved the unallocated space from after the extended partition, to before it.

You can then move and resize the XP and Linux partitions to use that space as desired.

If you're lucky then the bootloader for XP is in the primary partition and as you're going to resize it and not move it, a repair is easier should that be required. As long as you're using something newer than lilo to boot linux, it won't care where you put it.


--- Quote ---- Expand the extended partition to use all available space
- Move the 2.5G partition to the end of the expanded partition
--- End quote ---

The only expanded is the 2.5G and that's already maximized. Did you mean the unallocated?


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