Problem replacing a failed hard disk

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Rodney
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Problem replacing a failed hard disk

Post by Rodney » Mon Dec 22, 2008 3:38 am

I have an older computer on which I had installed Ubuntu, a form of Linux. Yesterday, the hard drive failed. I had an older hard drive on the shelf I had taken out of an old computer. I swapped it with the failed one (both Western Digital Pata). Using a Windows boot disk,after changing the BIOS to boot from a floppy, the computer booted up and I could write to the hard disk using the DOS commands copy A:*.* :C and do a DIR on C and it was copied. I then changed the BIOS to boot off the CD and inserted the Ubuntu V8.04 disk into the CD drive to try to reinstall Ubuntu. It started off fine but on step 4 I get the message "No root file system is defined, Please correct this from partitioning menu. I have not found a partitioning menu anywhere. Would using FDisk to partion the hard drive work? As you can see I am a novice at this so any help, no matter how basic, will be appreciated. Thanks

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evahle
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hard drive

Post by evahle » Mon Dec 22, 2008 7:34 am

Hi Rodney. It's been a long time since I've used Fdisk, but I believe your assumtion is correct. Put your floppy back in and run Fdisk. Then partition the drive in part or in whole as you wish.

Hope this helps.

evahle :smile:

psycho
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Post by psycho » Mon Dec 22, 2008 8:19 am

Yeah, but if he could use the drive (i.e. copy files to C:), it would have to be partitioned already. Maybe it wants a non FAT32 file system (NTFS?). Or, it might want a FAT32 if it has an NTFS... Been a long time since I messed with linux.

Kevin

SETEC_Astronomy
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Post by SETEC_Astronomy » Mon Dec 22, 2008 10:58 am

The error from Ubuntu is common. It simply means you never created an ext3 partition with the mount point of "/". Ubuntu makes this really easy for anyone, provided your new (old) drive is functional. If you're running the LiveCD which I suspect you are and the drive has ABSOLUTELY NO WANTED INFORMATION then when prompted to partition select the "guided: use entire disk" option. WARNING: That option WILL DESTROY ALL EXISTING DATA on your drive. If you chose to manually partition the drives for a dual boot setup then make sure you create a "Swap" partition equal in size to the amount of RAM you have. Now create a root partition using any available space you choose, give it a mount point of / and you're done. It's always best to put the Swap partition first. I've been installing Ubuntu for years and both types of install CD (Alt and Live) both give you the option of how to format and partition your drives.

Rodney
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Post by Rodney » Mon Dec 22, 2008 11:44 am

I think I jumped from the frying pan into the fire. Since I wanted a larger capacity disk, I went out and bought a 320 GB as it was on sale for $79. Ubuntu installed on it just fine but now it won't boot from the hard disk, I get "ERROR 18" which I think means the partition the boot record resides on exceeds the size the BIOS is able to handle on boot. Now I have to figure out how to repartion downward in size, i.e. set up a smaller boot partition. I am to green at this to know how to do that but I will persue the Ubuntu forums as I'm sure I'm not the first to make that mistake. I can not find a copy of Fdisk in any of my old disks so have to locate one.

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Post by SETEC_Astronomy » Mon Dec 22, 2008 1:14 pm

That's a fairly easy fix. Boot up the LiveCD and goto System -> Administration -> Partition Editor (GParted) and it will allow you to resize a partition. With GParted open select the device and then the partition you want to resize and click Resize/Move up in the taskbar. If you want to get more out of your drive once you're done create a new partition and make it's mountpoint /home and your user directory will now have that space available to it for the storage of movies, pics, music, documents, etc... I'm happy to walk you through it if you need/want the help.

Rodney
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Post by Rodney » Tue Dec 30, 2008 7:19 am

I want to thank you all for your help. I solved my problem a little differently as I was to impatient to wait for all your good advice. I found an old floppy that had come with an old hard drive and used it to partition my big disk into two small partitions and then loaded Ubunto successfully. Now I can use gparted (part of the Ubuntu free programs) if I need to repartition the disk. Now, I'd like to find a good source for detailed instructions on how to use gparted, my web search has given me some info but I'd like a little more detailed instructions, especially in repartitioning hard drives already in use without destroying or losing data. Thanks again to all who gave me help.

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MrAl
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Post by MrAl » Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:27 am

Hi Rodney,


I just want to caution you when you repartition with data on the
disk that you wont want to loose. There are things that can go
wrong that will cause all or much of the data to be lost on the
disk. It's best to back up ALL information before repartitioning.
Remember the three rules of computer storage:
1. Backup.
2. Backup.
3. Backup.

It's a very hard lesson to learn if you dont learn it early on.

One of the things that can go wrong is as the disk is being
repartitioned the power goes out, and the program looses
track of where it was just before that so much of the data
if not all is lost.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

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reloadron
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Re: Problem replacing a failed hard disk

Post by reloadron » Tue Feb 17, 2009 7:09 am

Is there no way to keep spam out of these forums?

Ron

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