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My root partition is getting to full, so I want to increase it's size. I know gparted can extend partition space with free space after a partition. However I only have available space in front of my partition. like this:

[available space][root][other partition]

Is it possible/safe to extend root with the available space in front of it?

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I couldn't find the answer to this question on here. So I decided just to try it and answer my own question.

Is it safe?

I don't know. messing with / doesn't feel safe. So make sure you make a backup just in case.

Is it possible?

yes it is. It worked fine for me. I used the instructions on gparted.org to create a live usb. Booted from it. Removed my swap and then extended / to the space in front of it.

The only thing I forgot was to remove the line containing my swap UUID from /etc/fstab which caused some booting issues. Luckily I decided to ponder for a moment about possible causes before reinstalling an OS over my root partition. Maybe it is smart to do this step before you use gparted.

# comment out/remove this line
# UUID=<MY_UUID> swap           swap    defaults,noatime 0 2

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