This is how my hard drive (where I have Xubuntu 12.10) is formatted currently, based on a recent GParted screenshot:

GParted Screenshot

I want to expand sda6 (4) to take up the free 11.72 GiB unallocated space. But I can't do it. This is what I did and gathered so far:

  • I can't add another primary partition as I have 4 already. I didn't know that prior to starting up GParted and right-clicking the unallocated 11.72 GiB space. :/

  • /dev/sda5 is swap.

  • /dev/sda2 and /dev/sda3 are Windows partitions and need to remain as they are.

I am a bit clueless on how to enhance /sda6 now, I have definitely not enough basic knowledge on how to proceed. :( I don't even know if I have to keep the swap partition but that thought is moot anyway as I can't create another primary partition. Help! I'd appreciate it a lot. :)

I'd even be willing a tutorial which could help me get forward via the terminal.

1 Answer 1


Your question doesn't explicitly say what you want to do, but I guess you want to use that spare 11GB of space to expand /dev/sda6. You won't be able to do this while you are running Linux from the sda6 partition - the usual solution is to use a LiveCD, perhaps SystemRescueCD, to run GParted.

The best way to do this is:

  • Resize/Move your extended partition, sda4, so that it includes that 11GB of space
  • Move sda5 so that it comes before the free space in the extended partition (i.e. by changing the "free space preceding" value in the Move window to 0)
  • Resize sda6 so that it uses up all the free space.


  • Resize/Move your extended partition, sda4, so that it includes that 11GB of space
  • Create a new logical partition, sda7, using that 11GB of space, and mount that as the folder where you need most space (likely as /home).
  • Your guess is right. Sorry I thought that was clear from my post but re-reading you are right. I can't do anything to neither sda4 nor sda6, every entry in the context menu is greyed out. Ok, technically speaking I could still click on "Manage Flags" and "Information" but I can't resize/move them.
    – henry
    Feb 3, 2013 at 11:45
  • 1
    My best guess is that you're trying to do this from the Linux instance running on /dev/sda6, which won't work - you can't move these things around the disk while they're in use. I've updated my answer.
    – rkday
    Feb 3, 2013 at 11:57
  • Holy crap. The machine is now unbootable as it enter the grub rescue mode. What now?
    – henry
    Feb 3, 2013 at 14:25
  • That depends on exactly what you did in GParted and what the final disk layout was: help.ubuntu.com/community/Grub2/… may prove helpful.
    – rkday
    Feb 3, 2013 at 16:17
  • I know its too late to comment now but still I would like to do. You moved the whole linux partition and so it failed to boot. You might have used some way to recover but when I face any booting issue I boot from my live Ubuntu 12.10 CD and run command to re-install GRUB (boot-loader).
    – Ravi
    Dec 15, 2013 at 9:18

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