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gogobebe2
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 7:26 pm    Post subject: Beginner's Installation (I changed the title) Reply with quote

Hey, I am 13 years old. I want to learn linux and how it works. I am up to step 4 in Gentoo Hand book:http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/handbook/handbook-amd64.xml?part=1&chap=4 and I don't know how big each partiton and everything should be. I am really new to linux. I have a 320.1 GB hardrive and 6 gb of ram. Thanks if someone could tell me how to do this because I am sooo confused on how to partition.

Much appriciated :D


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 7:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to Gentoo! I hope you're having fun with it.

The page you linked tells you exactly how big you should make each partition. The boot partition will be 32M, the swap partition 512M, and the root partition will take up the remaining space.

If you have questions on specific parts of that page, quote the passage you're having trouble with and we'll see if we can help you out.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Partitioning is like dividing up a room into smaller pieces. Your "room" is 320GB. When a Disk comes from the factory, the partition equals the entire disk. Using the room example, the room is one big room. Partitioning allows the one big room to be split into smaller rooms. The maximum partition count on any disks is 4. If I wanted equal partion sizes on your 320 GB disk you would end up with 4 partitions of roughly 80GB a piece. Most linux users come in 2 varieties

  1. Those who use an entire disk at install.
  2. Those who have a version of Windows on the disk already

Which of those 2 are you :?:
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

audiodef wrote:
Welcome to Gentoo! I hope you're having fun with it.

The page you linked tells you exactly how big you should make each partition. The boot partition will be 32M, the swap partition 512M, and the root partition will take up the remaining space.

If you have questions on specific parts of that page, quote the passage you're having trouble with and we'll see if we can help you out.


To expand on the books example, you will not use these sizes. The swap partition size should equal your RAM Amount. The boot Partition is anywhere from 32M to 64M depending on how may kernels you will boot, and some users divide the remaining space in half in order to creat the root partition and a user partition.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eyoung100 wrote:
Partitioning is like dividing up a room into smaller pieces. Your "room" is 320GB. When a Disk comes from the factory, the partition equals the entire disk. Using the room example, the room is one big room. Partitioning allows the one big room to be split into smaller rooms. The maximum partition count on any disks is 4. If I wanted equal partion sizes on your 320 GB disk you would end up with 4 partitions of roughly 80GB a piece. Most linux users come in 2 varieties

  1. Those who use an entire disk at install.
  2. Those who have a version of Windows on the disk already

Which of those 2 are you :?:

I am using the entire disk at install.
P.S, thanks so much for taking time to help me :wink:
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i suggest you use virtualbox to learn gentoo before using it on a serious system. have fun bud ;-) 32 megs is tiny for boot, i use around 160 megs and boot can hold several kernels on my machine. most linux distributions have boot as a subdirectory of root / swap is like a pagefile on windows. you will need at least a root / and swap, /boot is optional but i suggest you do it.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Using the Information you provided:
From the Install CD:
Code:
cfdisk
sda1 --> 160 MB --> Mount: /boot
sda2 --> 312 GB --> Mount: /
sda3 --> 6 GB --> swap

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eyoung100 wrote:
Using the Information you provided:
From the Install CD:
Code:
cfdisk
sda1 --> 160 MB --> Mount: /boot
sda2 --> 312 GB --> Mount: /
sda3 --> 6 GB --> swap

I am in the cfdisk menu and I deleted all the other stuff and now I clicked new. So is sda1 primary, sda2 logical and sda 3?
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

6 GB of swap with 6 GB RAM is severe overkill, unless you need to hibernate. I'd not create a swap partition at all, you can always use a swap file should there be need for it (I doubt).
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jaglover wrote:
6 GB of swap with 6 GB RAM is severe overkill, unless you need to hibernate. I'd not create a swap partition at all, you can always use a swap file should there be need for it (I doubt).

K thanks, I still don't know what I am supposed to do. I typed cfdisk and it took me to a menu. I deleted sda5, sda6 and sda7 which were already there, then I selected "New" and it askes me for Primary or Logical. Now what?
:?: :?: :?: :?:
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Remember I said you are allowed to create 4 Primary Partitions. Since cfdisk should now read Unpartitioned Space, 32000 MBs, choose New and then Primary since you will only need 3-4
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

primary has 4 partitions it can make, if you are used to windows sda1 = c sda2 = d sda3 = e extended/logical will create partitions past original limitations, for if you have more than that required.

6gb is overkill, 2gb should suffice. swap file? do you got links for this? id much rather file swap rather than partition wasted space to it.

id do primary primary primary if its gentoo only. id make boot sda1& swap sda2 & root sda3 as the handbook does.

ill look at the hand book in a second and if it lacks this primary / logical information ill file bug reports as logical will put a drive off @ like sda5 or higher.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gogobebe2,

Welcome to Gentoo.

A potted history of partitions ...
When hard drives were small, less than 32Mb (really MB) late 1980's there were no partitions.
When the first 40Mb HDD came out, partitions were invented, so that MSDOS could use the entire hard drive.
As there was some space left at the end of the first block on the disk, the partition table was squeezed in there.
There was enough space for a partition table to hold four partitions.
The partition table had to go here as the BIOS can only read the first block on the hard drive.

These four partitions are now known as Primary partitions.

Hard drives kept getting bigger and at 128Mb, the partition table had to be extended again.
The concept of the Extended Partition was introduced.
It was now possible to define one Primary Partition as Extended. This only reserves space on the hard drive for Logical Partitions, which are created inside the Extended Partition.

This gives you the partition scheme today, where the rules are :-
4 Primary Partitions maximum
3 Primary Partitions and one Extended Partition
If you have an Extended Partition you can create Logical Partitions inside it.

Today, the MSDOS Partition table cannot even describe all the space on some hard drives but thats not an issue for you right now.
Make three Primary partitions for /boot, <swap> and root (/)
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 10:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@666threesixes666

Here's an example from real life. I was building openoffice in a box with 2 GB of RAM and no swap. I had conky installed and happened to see the RAM usage got too close to 2 GB, I opened a root terminal, typed
Code:
dd if=/dev/zero of=/swap bs=1024 count=1M
swapon /swap

Openoffice compiled successfully using freshly added swap file. Indeed, swap support must be enabled in kernel.
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why are we talking about MS-DOS partition tables?

As far as I can tell, cfdisk does not understand GPT partition tables, so if you're going to learn something then I strongly recommend that you use something relevant to today. Go with parted or something else that specifically says it supports GPT partitions.

GPT has all the advantages and none of the disadvantages. No need to know about primary or extended partitions, and the maximum number of partitions is so large that it doesn't matter in any practical system I can imagine.

I was an fdisk advocate up until my current machine, when NeddySeagoon pointed out that my 3T drives couldn't use the old partition tables because they were too big, and then when he described how monumentally obsolete the old tables are, I vowed to never use a DOS partition table again.

The only excuses IMO are that you're using old hardware that for some reason doesn't support GPT, or if you're dual booting with an obsolete Windows.
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm really sorry but I still don't know what to do lol. I am soo sorry I don't understand, this is the first time I have ever installed ANY operating system. Also thanks for helping but I don't know the commands, I understand why you partiton but what are sectors? I still don't know how to do it. What commands to type and stuff.
Ok I typed this:
# fdisk /dev/sda
Command (m for help): p
Command (m for help): d
Command (m for help): 1
Command (m for help): n
Select (default p): p
Partition number (1-4, default 1): 1
First sector (2048-625140334, default 2048):
What are sectors? Idk what to do here.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 4:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

gogobebe2 wrote:
this is the first time I have ever installed ANY operating system.


oh man, gentoo is a bit more difficult of a linux install. you might want to head over to ubuntu, or debian. get your bearings on how to install those, and build up some linux command line skills then come back. those for the most part are "next next next next next done" installs

fdisk is pro on linux, on windows/dos fdisk is similar to linux's cfdisk.
cfdisk is still pretty pro.
parted is pro.
gparted is novice friendly.

you could gparted your disk from a live rescue cd. i suggest you research unetbootin to make usb install media. partitioning is still in the easy steps, before kernel configuration and compiling. you can always install ubuntu to your base system, and then install virtual box, then install gentoo into virtualbox.

to really speed things up... install hexchat irc, then go to join freenode network & /j #gentoo
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 7:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

First of all: the hint about using irc to speed things up is a good one.

I'd recommend to stay with Gentoo if you want to learn something, are willing to invest some time and are ok with a "computer-not-working-out-of-the-box"-kind situation.

I'd recommend to start with gpt partition table because that's the future. This can be done via parted or gparted or with gdisk (emerge gptfdisk if you don't have this - it's possible to install it on live media).

With GPT there's no limit to number of "primary partitions" that is reachable while creating a sane system (128 partitions would be theoretical maximum).

Unless you want to boot via UEFI (which may introduce other problems) you'll need 4 partitions:

  • 1st: a "bios boot partition", 1M in size, Type: EF02
  • 2nd: a boot partition, I typically use about 512 MB which may be a litte over the top but allows me for example to but a small rescue image there
  • 3rd: a swap partition: recommended size differs: when I started it was about size of RAM*2, later size of RAM, now sometimes no swap at all. I recommend to create a swap partition of at least the size of your ram nonetheless. This will allow you to use hibernate if you want to later. Disk space is also very cheap (even with SSDs). Most of the time I don't really need it, but when I do it's always better to have it, because your system may disbehave otherwise or OOM-Kill kills some processes (from my experience most likely the ones you would deem most important).
  • 4th: root partition: here goes all the rest of the space, in earlier days if was recommended to break that up into even more subpartitions (e.g. var, home, usr), but this tends to lead to other problems (except maybe home, but then you'll have to choose how large both partitions need to be and from my experience: you'll always choose the wrong numbers).
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

gogobebe2
As far as I understood, all you need is just install a system. For the first attempt it will be enough, if you can just boot into your system. Don't care about swap, boot, primary, logical partitions. All these smart guys who advised you how to make a partitioning, are right. But you do not listen to them. It is not necessary to have a bunch of partitions.
For the first installation it will be enough to have only one partition. Run cfdisk and create one primary partition. You can expand this partition to all available size (320Gb) or can create it smaller (for example 20Gb or 30Gb, both enough to install system). Write you partition layout changes and exit cfdisk. Now you can create filesystem on this partition (assuming it is /dev/sda1, you can check it by running "blkid" command). Run "mkfs.ext4 /dev/sda1". It will create filesystem. Once you have filesystem created, run these commands:
Code:
mkdir /mnt/gentoo
mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/gentoo

Now you can access your newly created partition and start system installation. Follow handbook from chapter "5.a. Installing a Stage Tarball"

At the next installation stages you will meet a much more complex tasks than simply partitioning. So, may be it is a good advice to start not with Gentoo. As it was suggested above, something like Ubuntu or Debian. I would suggest you some of LinuxMint distros. You will get your system in 20 minutes and start to learn linux.

If you really decided to go with Gentoo, keep in mind: installation takes much more than 20 minutes. At minimum it will take 6-7 hours (if you have nor any issues) and it may take several days if some troubles will occurs.

Any way good luck!
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 10:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

gogobebe2:

I just want to suggest one thing which I don't think anybody else has mentioned, all the linux distribution have a directory called home, inside of which will be various subdirectories which will contain all your photos, videos, music etc. like the 'My Documents' folder in windows. It also contains your preferences for the various programs you install.
It can be worth putting that, if nothing else, on a seperate partition. That way if you decide to switch distributions down the road (loads of people "distro hop" all the time) or for some reason have to reinstall gentoo you can just format the / (the main system) partition without losing all your stuff.
There are various ways people partition their drives for different reasons and there's nothing wrong with having just one.

You have jumped in at the deep end by choosing Gentoo but I have to say I wish I'd picked it up years ago. Hope you stick with it.


you may find this video usefulas a supplement to the guide (I did): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJwwcw56d6c

EDIT: I just saw in the comments that you'd already found the vid. lol
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gogobebe2,

Nobody answered your question on sectors ...

A sector is the smallest addressable part of a disk drive, or more generally a block device. Sectors on hard drives less than 1Tbyte are 512 bytes.
On hard drives bigger than about 2Tb, sectors are 4kb. On drives in between, it can be either.

A block device is so called because you have to read one block, even if you only want to get one byte.
There are also character devices, like printers (a bad example now) and keyboards, where you can ouput or read individual characters.

The command
Code:
ls -l /dev
will show the difference.
Code:
brw-rw----  1 root disk        8,   0 Oct 10 18:08 sda
the initial b indicates a block device.
Code:
crw-rw-rw-  1 root root        1,   8 Oct 10 18:08 random
the inital c indicates a charater device.

Early hard drives, used an addressing scheme call Cylinder, Head and Sector. Modern hard drives only pretend to do this but its still there.
A hard drive is made up of a number of 'platters' - plates is you like, stacked one above the other on the same spindle, so that they rotate together.
Each surface of each platter has a read/write head. So a HDD with 4 platters will have 8 heads. The heads can be moved in and out over the surface of the platter.
In this scheme, a cylinder is one of many concentric rings of the hard drive where data is stored. However, thats not enough to locate some data. You also need to know which head can read the data of interest. Our example drive has eight heads.
Now you have the heads on the correct cylinder, you know which head can read the data ... but thats still not enough.
Each data track is further broken down into sectors of 512 bytes, so you also need to know the sector number on the track.

This begs the question of how does the drive know when it is reading the right track and sector.
Low level formatting, writes address and data marks, so the drive can tell what the address of any block of data is.
This is why all of a disk cannot be used for user data. The formatting takes up some of the disk space.

If you have a scrap floppy drive, you can take the cover off and see the working parts. A floppy is a single platter with a head each side.
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gogobebe2
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

creaker wrote:
gogobebe2
As far as I understood, all you need is just install a system. For the first attempt it will be enough, if you can just boot into your system. Don't care about swap, boot, primary, logical partitions. All these smart guys who advised you how to make a partitioning, are right. But you do not listen to them. It is not necessary to have a bunch of partitions.
For the first installation it will be enough to have only one partition. Run cfdisk and create one primary partition. You can expand this partition to all available size (320Gb) or can create it smaller (for example 20Gb or 30Gb, both enough to install system). Write you partition layout changes and exit cfdisk. Now you can create filesystem on this partition (assuming it is /dev/sda1, you can check it by running "blkid" command). Run "mkfs.ext4 /dev/sda1". It will create filesystem. Once you have filesystem created, run these commands:
Code:
mkdir /mnt/gentoo
mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/gentoo

Now you can access your newly created partition and start system installation. Follow handbook from chapter "5.a. Installing a Stage Tarball"

At the next installation stages you will meet a much more complex tasks than simply partitioning. So, may be it is a good advice to start not with Gentoo. As it was suggested above, something like Ubuntu or Debian. I would suggest you some of LinuxMint distros. You will get your system in 20 minutes and start to learn linux.

If you really decided to go with Gentoo, keep in mind: installation takes much more than 20 minutes. At minimum it will take 6-7 hours (if you have nor any issues) and it may take several days if some troubles will occurs.

Any way good luck!

Thanks so much to you and everyone that has helped me. I was trying to install gentoo to learn how linux works because I read somewhere that gentoo is good for learning. But from what I've read in this forum post, I should start at an easier distro.... So I was wondering, is arch simple and do any of you think it would be ok for a beginner to try? Again thanks a lot for helping me so much! Really appriciate it!!!!! THANK YOU! :D :) :D :) :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :!: :!: :!: :!: :!: :!:
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 3:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've never gotten around to arch, but my other favorite distro right now is xubuntu. If you want a simple, easy success story then that's what I'd recommend. If you have fairly mainstream hardware you can get it up and running in under 10 minutes, especially if it's on a VM.

Here's something you might want to try if you have a 64-bit processor:


  1. Install Xubuntu, because it's incredibly easy.
  2. Put maybe a 25g or 50g partition for Xubuntu. That's plenty, I get by with 8g sometimes.
  3. Put the rest of your disk as storage for VMs.


What this lets you do is get up and running on Linux right away, almost zero effort compared to Gentoo.

When you get the hang of it, install kvm or virtualbox. These are virtualization engines. You can install entire computer virtual machines on the big part of your hard disk.

Not sure if you understand virtual machines yet, but if your hardware is adequate then you're running one or more virtual computers inside of your existing computer. What this would let you do is try various distributions without losing your regular environment, you can have your normal computing life and then play with things that might break without taking any risks.

This is important because you can learn what works best for you with almost no risk. You can get a VM just right, make a backup of it and then try something that might break your system with almost zero risk. If it fails and you can't fix it, you just restore the backup and you're done, 5 minutes.

Now, the reason for the small partition for the host (your real operating system) is that, if your storage for the virtual machines are on the other partition, you can install another distribution over the top of your Ubuntu operating system, install KVM or VirtualBox on that one, and probably just start using your VMs again. I've done it several times. You just give the installer the small partition to do what it wants with, and leave the rest alone.

I use LVM2 as a way to resize my partitions on the fly, but that's probably a little bit too much to bite off in one chunk.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 5:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

arch is just as ugly of an install as gentoo.... listen to ^^^^ i fully endorse you running xubuntu, then virtualizing gentoo, arch, slackware, fedora, & if you like windows 7. xubuntu is very painless and works well. xubuntu was my primary install media for a while, until i found out my laptop doesnt like its video modules. it has hexchat (or maybe xchat) for an irc client. irc so you can chat to people that will tell you gentoo tips and tricks. i wanted to get you on the right track, to make things painless at first, then learn at your own pace from there on. don't give up, its worth the effort in the end.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 6:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

666threesixes666 wrote:
arch is just as ugly of an install as gentoo.... listen to ^^^^ i fully endorse you running xubuntu, then virtualizing gentoo, arch, slackware, fedora, & if you like windows 7. xubuntu is very painless and works well. xubuntu was my primary install media for a while, until i found out my laptop doesnt like its video modules. it has hexchat (or maybe xchat) for an irc client. irc so you can chat to people that will tell you gentoo tips and tricks. i wanted to get you on the right track, to make things painless at first, then learn at your own pace from there on. don't give up, its worth the effort in the end.

Thanks so much for helping me on my endevours :) What about Debian? Debian looks nice I am am very keen to try it.
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