Partitioning a hard drive

Thomas Stivers stivers_t at
Mon Nov 25 10:34:55 EST 2002

I would also suggest a separate partition for /usr/local, you may not
understand this now, but /usr/local is where most programs you compile
yourself install. Making a partition for it makes upgrading and switching
distros easier. Good luck.

On 11/25/02  4:01 AM -0800, Ralph W. Reid wrote:
> Glenn Ervin staggered into view and mumbled:
> >
> >
> >I was just reading on a how-to page about getting ready for installing
> >Linux.
> >It mentions partitioning a hard drive, and I wanted to get some feed back on
> >whether any of you wish you had done it differently.
> >I have a second hard drive, which I intend on dedicating totally to Linux,
> >drive D, which is 8 GB in size.
> >>From what I read, it seems that I want at least 3 primary partitions.
> >Unless I am mistaken, I want one to be no more than 80 MB, and one no more
> >than 500 MB.
> >* Should I have 4 primary partitions?
> >P.S., I still have not decided which distro I am going to use, and I am
> >about to get to that part of the documentation.  I am considering Emacspeak
> >for the speech part.
> I installed Slackware 8.0 on a system earlier this year, and made one
> of the partitions a little smaller than I probably should have.  The
> documentation indicated that installing all of the software would
> require about 2 GB as I recall, so I set up the boot partition with
> about 2 GB of space.  Unfortunately, this did not leave me much room
> for installing large packages in the future, so I have probably set
> myself up for a lot of extra hard drive repartitioning at some point
> in the future.
> My talking box uses Slackware 8.0 with Speakup--a nice, smooth running
> set up.  I set up the boot partition on this system to be about 3.5
> GB, so I have a little room for expansion.
> Both systems have 3 partitions on them:
> 1.  Boot partition--contains all of the system software and extra
> utilities.  I considered setting up a separate partition for /tmp,
> but these systems do not get huge quantities of multiple users
> playing...uhm...working all at once, so I decided that leaving it on
> the boot partition would be okay for now.
> 2.  /home--user accounts, ftp directory trees, and archiving.  I made these partitions large because I know that given enough time, I will probably
> produce a lot of data.  If the root partition gets too full on either
> system, I suppose I could set up some symbolic links to hidden
> directories on these partitions if I need to, but that would be a
> temporary fix at best--best to repartition the drive if things get
> that full.
> 3.  swap partition--system swap area.  The documentation I read
> indicated that I should make a swap partition twice the size of main
> memory, up to 128 MB.  Both of these systems contain 64 MB of RAM,
> and I was pretty sure that little if anything would be done on either of them to force large amounts of swapping.  I just wanted to get the numbers
> close to what was suggested while recognizing that the exact values
> were not too critical, so I wound up with 169 MB of swap on one
> system, and 120 MB of swap on the other.  The system with 169 MB of
> swap space might be used for some simple graphics work later on, so I
> felt comfortable making the swap space a little larger.  Anyone who
> is considering setting up swap spaces much larger than this might
> want to think about how much time might be required to transfer all
> of the data between main memory and the swap partition on the hard
> drive--if lots of swapping is anticipated, perhaps installing some
> more RAM would be a better solution.
> I hope this rambling helps a little.  Have a _great_ day!
> -- 
> Ralph.  N6BNO.  Wisdom comes from central processing, not from I/O.
> rreid at
> Opinions herein are either mine or they are flame bait.
> SLOPE = (y2 - y1) / (x2 - x1)
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Thomas Stivers
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