[ubuntu-uk] Removing XP partition

Neil Greenwood neil.greenwood.lug at gmail.com
Sun Oct 12 21:57:54 BST 2008

2008/10/11 Dianne Reuby <pramclub at yahoo.co.uk>:
> I'm ready to remove my old XP partition - I need the space to extend my
> Ubuntu backup.
> I have two drives, XP and Ubuntu backup is on one, and Ubuntu root,
> home, swap is on the other. These drives are quite old, only 30Gb each.
> In Gparted, the XP partition is flagged as boot, lba - if I just delete
> it, will this cause a boot (or GRUB) problem?

It may depend if the other disk is also flagged as bootable. It
probably won't make a difference but it might be wise to make a backup
of the MBR (master boot record) from the disk before you delete the
partition. This is the part of the disk with the program that runs
when you boot from that disk. You can do this by opening a terminal
and typing the following command:
  sudo dd if=/dev/sda of=backup.mbr bs=512 count=1

You might need to change the '/dev/sda' to whatever the drive is
called in Gparted. It might be hda instead of sda. The backup will be
called 'backup.mbr' and stored in your home directory - you can change
the name on the command line, including specifying the full path to
another directory.

If you need to restore, you'll need a CD/DVD that will boot to a
desktop, e.g. an Ubuntu live CD. You'll also need access to the
directory in which you stored the MBR backup. Then type the following
command to restore the MBR:
  dd if=backup.mbr of=/dev/sda
You won't need the bs or count arguments on this command line, since
the backup file is the right size. If the CD you used is not an Ubuntu
CD, you might find that the correct disk name is hda instead.

Reply if you need more information.

> My plan once I've done a new backup is to move /swap to the backup
> drive, and have root and /home on the other drive.

Sounds like a reasonable plan.

Hope this helps.


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