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 Forum index » House Training » Beginners Help ( Start Here)
some ?s before i format my hd
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deshlab


Joined: 23 Jul 2005
Posts: 82
Location: oldenburg, germany

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 16:45    Post subject:  some ?s before i format my hd  

hi,
today windows xp gave me a refreshingly unexpected monster crash (logon process broken, all repairs failed) and so i'm gonna take the opportunity and redo the harddrive Wink

if anyone could answer my (mostly puppy related) questions here, i'd be grinning - or maybe not...

- i'm going for a fat32 disk and probably give puppy it's own partition. if installed to harddrive, will it still run completely from ram or equally fast? and how much space would you plan for the partition (it's a 20GB hd)?

- my data backup is currently running. is there a way to backup the windows registry from within puppy (to access some settings stored there)?

- i'm not to sure about grub (installed in windows and the mbr. is it a problem, that i'll be unable to uninstall it prior to the formatting or will it be swiped as well?

- is it strongly advisable to install windows first after the formatting or would it be ok to format the disk using a livecd, partition it the way i plan and then install puppy in a secondary partition leaving room for windows in the first?


sorry for n00bness and especially for everything that may havebeen answered here already. i'm gonna continue reading some threads about similar issues now and if i find answers i'll update here, ok?

thanks!
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Bruce B


Joined: 18 May 2005
Posts: 11080
Location: The Peoples Republic of California

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 17:37    Post subject:  

> today windows xp gave me a refreshingly unexpected monster crash (logon process broken, all repairs failed) and so i'm gonna take the opportunity and redo the harddrive Wink

As a Linux activist I accept this a wonderful news and a great opportunity for you.


> if anyone could answer my (mostly puppy related) questions here, i'd be grinning - or maybe not...

I can answer any question. Sometimes my answers are correct. Answers are free, correct answers are 25 cents. If you can agree to these terms I will proceed.


> - i'm going for a fat32 disk and probably give puppy it's own partition. if installed to harddrive, will it still run completely from ram or equally fast? and how much space would you plan for the partition (it's a 20GB hd)?

On a hard drive option 2 install it does not run complete from RAM. On an option 1 install it doesn't run completely from ram either, but most of it does. Option 1 uses a combination of files in pup001 and files that were copied to RAM in the boot process. I will run completely from ram if you opt to not have a pup001 file, but this is hardly what you want.

As far as speed is concerned: An option 2 boots faster because it doesn't have to read usr_cram.fs and copy it to RAM and set it up. The running speed is about the same, except on an option 2 install when you launch a new application it has to read if from disk and copy it to ram. Disk read speed is much slower than RAM read speed. You won't notice it much, except when launching large apps. Even at that Puppy is not a slow operating system, on the contrary, its one of the faster OSes available for personal computing.

- my data backup is currently running. is there a way to backup the windows registry from within puppy (to access some settings stored there)?

I do not wish to answer this question because I don't know if XP is on an NTFS file system. The answer is proabably yes, but I do not advise people on NTFS if I can get out of doing it.

- i'm not to sure about grub (installed in windows and the mbr. is it a problem, that i'll be unable to uninstall it prior to the formatting or will it be swiped as well?

I'm not sure what you are saying. Widows setup will most likely rewrite the mbr. Does that help?

> - is it strongly advisable to install windows first after the formatting or would it be ok to format the disk using a livecd, partition it the way i plan and then install puppy in a secondary partition leaving room for windows in the first?

I think it is strongly advisable not to install windows at all. But if you must, I think you should give Windows hda1 and size the partition such that you have enough free space after hda1 to add other partitions as you please and anticipate you will need in the future.


> sorry for n00bness and especially for everything that may havebeen answered here already. i'm gonna continue reading some threads about similar issues now and if i find answers i'll update here, ok?

Nothing to apologize for IMO. I gave you plenty of answers. The question is: are they good answers? Smile
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deshlab


Joined: 23 Jul 2005
Posts: 82
Location: oldenburg, germany

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 18:18    Post subject:  

>On a hard drive option 2 install it does not run complete from RAM. On an option 1 install it doesn't run completely from ram either, but most of it does. Option 1 uses a combination of files in pup001 and files that were copied to RAM in the boot process. I will run completely from ram if you opt to not have a pup001 file, but this is hardly what you want.
>As far as speed is concerned: An option 2 boots faster because it doesn't have to read usr_cram.fs and copy it to RAM and set it up. The running speed is about the same, except on an option 2 install when you launch a new application it has to read if from disk and copy it to ram. Disk read speed is much slower than RAM read speed. You won't notice it much, except when launching large apps. Even at that Puppy is not a slow operating system, on the contrary, its one of the faster OSes available for personal computing.

so you say sacrificing some work speed for a faster boot up might be a good bargain. as i'll try sticking to smaller apps anyway i guess i'm convinced.

- my data backup is currently running. is there a way to backup the windows registry from within puppy (to access some settings stored there)?
>I do not wish to answer this question because I don't know if XP is on an NTFS file system. The answer is proabably yes, but I do not advise people on NTFS if I can get out of doing it.

yup, it's ntfs. my precise question would be: which files from my hd to i have to backup to extract registry settings later on. i just found the answer to that via google: "The Registry is located at 630 Washington Street which is on the right just past the traffic light." :-) or rather http://www.easydesksoftware.com/regfiles.htm

>I'm not sure what you are saying. Widows setup will most likely rewrite the mbr. Does that help?

not really. it will help if you tell me whether formatting the hard drive erases the mbr. if it did not i would have a hard disk with a still empty primary partition waiting for windows and an already filled partition accomodating puppy and an outdated boot loader poiting at completely different things...

>I think it is strongly advisable not to install windows at all. But if you must, I think you should give Windows hda1 and size the partition such that you have enough free space after hda1 to add other partitions as you please and anticipate you will need in the future.

i'd sure like to skip the m$ experience but it's a little too early for that. at least i have not the least interest in switching to vista. anyway, i plan to give hda1 to windows. my question is, can i skip this for the time being and put puppy in hda5 (swap in hda6) and work with these and add my xp later on at hda1? is this a)possible and b)advisable


> Answers are free, correct answers are 25 cents.

what kind of cents - american, canadian, australian? there are european cents too nowadays... must be some underground power expanding...

> are they good answers?

at least as good as my questions i'd say... :-) thanks again
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Bruce B


Joined: 18 May 2005
Posts: 11080
Location: The Peoples Republic of California

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 19:32    Post subject:  

> not really. it will help if you tell me whether formatting the hard drive erases the mbr. if it did not i would have a hard disk with a still empty primary partition waiting for windows and an already filled partition accomodating puppy and an outdated boot loader poiting at completely different things...

It would not erase the mbr, if it did you would not be able to access your hard disk at all. It would not change the mbr if you formatted it with the same format.

The mbr is a 512 byte file located on absolute sector 0. The mbr must contain accurate information about where the logical sector 0's are on your partitions ( and I think types of partitions)

I think you should not worry about the MBR because formatting a partition will not damage it, even it if updates it.

In the 9x series the registery was named user.dat and system.dat and located in the windows directory.

I think XP moved these files elseware. How do you know that a messed up registry is not the reason Windows won't boot?

> ip this for the time being and put puppy in hda5 (swap in hda6) and work with these and add my xp later on at hda1? is this a)possible and b)advisable

Yes of course you can contigent on an IF. IF you actually trust that XP will not mess with, damage or otherwise destroy hda5 and hda6 in the setup process.

Sometimes XP is sold without standard setup disks. Sometimes the setup restores the pc to the orginal configuration.

In the first place I don't think XP was conceived by nice people. I don't trust the software they write. Due to my mis-trust, I'd install XP then add the extra partitions. It doesn't take much time to run the basic setup, you can go back and configure it later.
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raffy

Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 4759
Location: Manila

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 19:39    Post subject: Do Windows first  

Since you plan to put Grub in MBR (as it is just logical given your plan to use Windows), install Windows _first_ as it has the habit of replacing what Linux puts there.

However, you could have the partitions prepared by Puppy before installing Windows, and might have a spare FAT32 partition for storing data read by Puppy from your old NTFS partition. If you plan to do this, then your primary partitions 1 and 2 are booked for FAT32. Note that at times, FAT32 have to be partitioned as FAT32 LBA (you will know if Windows gets error preparing your drive).

I guess you have to format partition 2 in DOS, then using Puppy (as some rescue CD), backup your data to partition 2, then install Windows to partition 1. In Puppy v. 1.04 Utilities - MUT you will find easy mounting of partitions.

Disclaimer: I have avoided handling WinXP, so I don't know how true it is that it wipes all partitions of the drive at install time. If that is possible, then that partition 2 will be useless Sad Use some other backup device.

Please drop by the link below for some supplemental discussion. You will also find there the option to install Puppy in WinXP.

_________________
Puppy user since Oct 2004. Want FreeOffice? Get the sfs (English only).
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deshlab


Joined: 23 Jul 2005
Posts: 82
Location: oldenburg, germany

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 20:37    Post subject:  

bruce

>It would not erase the mbr, if it did you would not be able to access your hard disk at all. It would not change the mbr if you formatted it with the same format. I think you should not worry about the MBR because formatting a partition will not damage it, even it if updates it.

hmm, that's rather what i did not want to read... my concern is not that the mbr might get damaged, but on the contrary that it would retain it's current state including my current grub settings. as i pointed out, i would have liked to install puppy before windows (due to the fact that my xp cd is quite a few miles on the autobahn away).

>I think XP moved these files elseware. How do you know that a messed up registry is not the reason Windows won't boot?

as far as i understand the error which brought the mighty machine down is very probably some registry trouble. i wouldn't touch that with a ten foot pole anyway if it wasn't for a few complex programm settings (coordinates, color schemes etc) that would be troublesome to recreate from scratch.

>Yes of course you can contigent on an IF. IF you actually trust that XP will not mess with, damage or otherwise destroy hda5 and hda6 in the setup process. Sometimes XP is sold without standard setup disks. Sometimes the setup restores the pc to the orginal configuration.

the general tenor seems to be, that xp's installation might screw up all former effort, so i'll have to get the cd first then do:
- format and partition the drive (hda1,2;Fat32 3; 5,6;ext2/swap)
- install winxp in primary (check if partition table still looks as planned)
- install puppy in the secondary
- unpack my backups (and install grub?)
- get some sleep


>In the first place I don't think XP was conceived by nice people.

aww, if they can bring up love for something as small and undistinctive as a banknote, they can't be such bad people...


raffy

>Since you plan to put Grub in MBR (as it is just logical given your plan to use Windows), install Windows _first_ as it has the habit of blanking your MBR (for its own use, I guess).

will do, sir :-)

>However, you could have the partitions prepared by Puppy before installing Windows, and might have a spare FAT32 partition for storing data read by Puppy from your old NTFS partition. If you plan to do this, then your primary partitions 1 and 2 are booked for FAT32. Note that at times, FAT32 have to be partitioned as FAT32 LBA (you will know if Windows gets error preparing your drive).
> guess you have to format partition 2 in DOS, then using Puppy (as some rescue CD), backup your data to partition 2, then install Windows to partition 1. In Puppy v. 1.04 Utilities - MUT you will find easy mounting of partitions.
>Please drop by the link below for some supplemental discussion.

i have already been studying the page you put together. good work there, despite my linuxnewbieness i felt like i understood nearly all of it (except the 'none' partition type of hda3...) . i even have writen much of it down by hand as my printer isn't accessible from puppy.

i think nearly all my questions have been answered now, there's even a bit of a grin... one last thing:

what size would you recommend for hda5 and -6 partitions? (my system: 20GB hd, 256mb ram, 1400mhz)
is about 500megs for each good/enough/too much? all large media and stuff would be placed on my fat32 (or 'none'?) partition anyway, wouldn't it?

thanks again to all of you and for now good night

Edit (05-08-25): as all questions have been answered i didn't want to bump this, therefor the edit.
again, big Thanks to everybody, i'm presumably gonna do the thing this weekend..

@rarsa: yup, the second windows partition is planned with the backup idea in mind. i understood from other sources that this is the common setup for a partitioned windows system (hda1 for windows and installed programms, hda2 for standalones, downloads, etc.)

Last edited by deshlab on Thu 25 Aug 2005, 09:27; edited 1 time in total
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Bruce B


Joined: 18 May 2005
Posts: 11080
Location: The Peoples Republic of California

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 20:48    Post subject:  

> - format and partition the drive (hda1,2;Fat32 3; 5,6;ext2/swap)

I would just partition and format hda1 as primary for C: leaving lots of free space.

After I installed XP I would do the rest of the partitioning. But then I don't know what partitioning software you are using. So I can't say more.
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raffy

Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 4759
Location: Manila

PostPosted: Tue 23 Aug 2005, 21:12    Post subject: Such patience discussing...  

I really admire your patience in discussing, Bruce Smile

Please, let me just clarify this: the "none" partition means it is a primary partition acting as a "placeholder" of one or many other virtual partitions. /dev/hda5 and /dev/hda6 are example virtual (or logical partitions). You have them because you put them in a placeholder (also called extended partition).

You can skip doing a placeholder. Just create all primary partitions, like /dev/hda1, /dev/hda2, /dev/hda3, and /dev/hda4 {period}. No more hda5 or hda6 if you have no placeholder in one of those four.
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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Wed 24 Aug 2005, 00:50    Post subject:  

I'm late to the conversation, Sad partitioning is one of my favorite topics. It seems that you got all the good answers:

Here are some explanations regarding the last questions:
Quote:
except the 'none' partition type of hda3
PC Hard disks interfaces were born with a severe handicap, They can only handle 4 primary partitions. To solve that, an extended partition (one per disk) can be created which can contain logical partitions.

Windows can only be installed to a primary partition. Linux can be installed to a logical partition.

Windows will be able to 'see' the logical partitions.

Now my turn to ask a question: If you are planning to install windows to a FAT32 partition, why do you want a secondary FAT32 partition? The only good reason I can think of right now is to be able to backup your data by backing up the whole partition.

I have a FAT32 shared partition but that's just because my XP partition is NTFS. If you 'over partition' your disk you'll end up wasting space in some places and lacking in others.

Given your HW specifications, here is a good partition schema:
Code:

hda1   Primary   FAT32 (XP and shared data)
hda2   Extended (rest of the HDD not used by XP)
  hda5 Logical  swap 500 MB  (swap)
  hda6 Logical  ext3   2 GB  (Puppy linux)
  Free space to play

or

hda1   Primary   FAT32 (XP)
hda2   Extended
  hda5 Logical  swap 500 MB  (swap)
  hda6 Logical  ext3   2 GB  (Puppy linux)
  hda7 Logical  FAT32 (shared data)

This is: Leave enough space for puppy to grow and leave some free space. You'll see that eventually you may want to experiment with puppy without 'endangering' your primary puppy installation or maybe configure puppy unleashed or maybe even try other distros (Yes, I said it, I know you'll be back to the kennel Wink )

For normal work you shouldn't need more than 500 MB swap, If you get to the point of requiring more I would suggest getting more RAM or suffer endless hours of disk trashing.

My option two shows the second FAT32 after the Puppy partition so you can resize it if you ever need to create another partition for the ludic purposes I've already explained. (Yes you can resize partitions without loosing data)
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