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I needed to remove all Microsoft partitions because I want to do a fresh install of Windows 10. I found a 1GiB large ext4 partition (/dev/nvme0n1p1) at the beginning of my SSD, which I am unsure about since my Linux system has a separate partition which is mounted in /etc/fstab.

When mounting the /dev/nvme0n1p1 partition, I observed that there are the usual efi, extlinux, grub2 and loader folders. Also, it contains several vmlinuz-*.img files.

I assume, it's an EFI partition from former Linux installations. Since the partition is not mounted in my Linux system, which is currently the only one, I am assuming I can delete it. Is that correct?

If that's the case, my 'real' EFI partition will be sandwitched between the Windows and Linux partition. Is that a problem? I know it does not be first, however, I'm worried about it being in the middle.

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  • An ESP - efi system partition must be FAT32. If converted to ext4 then not usable as an ESP. Windows & Linux normally share one ESP and you can only have one per drive/device. Windows wants lots of extra partitions in an order on drive, but ESP should not matter. docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-hardware/manufacture/desktop/…
    – oldfred
    Dec 29 '20 at 20:16
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As you note, if it is an EFI partition from a former Linux install, you can certainly delete it.

To answer your second question, NO, it does not matter if your "real" EFI partition is in the middle, or the end, or the beginning, of all your other partitions.

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