I have the following disk setup:

  • 200 GB SSD with windows 10 on it
  • 1 TB HDD with two 460 GB NTFS data partitions.

I want to format the 1st data partition to install linux on 100 GB of freed space and the remaining 360 GB dedicate back to NTFS. So on the HDD I need to have Linux and 2 NTFS partitions, all while 2nd NTFS partition stays in place at the end of the HDD.

How do I properly do it as I can only have 4 primary partitions? Should I just install linux on one partition without dedicated efi, swap, root and home partitions (if it is even possible)?

  • my guess would be virtual partition then you will have virtually all the partition you ever dreamt of. Have you try something so far ? What you're asking is possible if it"s what you don't know but without information we can't help you that much. Though be careful resizing partion though relatively reliable could fail and take a huge amout of time depending of the fragmentation and size available on the partition.I couldn't emphases enough Do a full backup before – Kiwy Apr 23 '18 at 12:03
  • @Kiwy By virtual partition you mean extended one? – Virgileo Apr 23 '18 at 12:13
  • @virgilieo yes extended one sorry. – Kiwy Apr 23 '18 at 12:18

The 4 primary partition limit applies only to disks partitioned with MBR. GPT, does not have this limitation. I strongly recommend you to change the partitioning scheme of your data partition from MBR to GPT if you need more that 4 partitions. Warning: backup your data before trying the conversion (there are multiple articles on how to accomplish this either using Windows 10 - diskpart - or Linux). Check this: http://www.thewindowsclub.com/convert-mbr-to-gpt-disk

If you go ahead and stay with MBR, you'll have to limit yourself to 4 primary partitions in your data disk or 3 primary + 1 extended. Since all Linux partitions will be on the same disk (no performance benefits), I would go with this very simple partitioning layout: 1 partition for / (and everything else), and 1 partition for swap. This would leave you with exactly 4 primary partitions (2 for Linux, and 2 for NTFS). Or you may take a look on how to create extended partitions in MBR with Linux fdisk.

  • Yeah but he/she must have a mobo that supports it. – MathCubes Dec 5 '18 at 17:36

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