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I ran out of space in my on the drive only to find that there was another unformatted partition in the system that is available. I now want to resize the current partition to take in the empty partition without losing data. Any ideas?

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    The eternal reminder of how to not lose data... Make a full and complete backup of your existing partiton before you attempt anything of this nature... – Peter.O Feb 8 '11 at 20:59
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    There are some options, but it would help if you gave us your current partition layout. What is the output of fdisk -l /dev/sda (or whatever your disk's device is called) – jsbillings Feb 8 '11 at 21:00
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boot from live Linux distro (you can use Ubuntu install disk) and use gparted

But always something can go wrong, so it is advisable to make a backup.

The other option is to format the unused partition and mount it and use it (depending on the size) as /home or /usr

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LVM is the way to go. Turn your whole spindles into PV's and migrate from legacy partition-based model to LVM model. RedHat has some good documentation on LVM, check it out.

  • How does LVM address the issue of not losing data when modifying partitions? – Peter.O Feb 9 '11 at 7:16
  • @fred.bear: LVM makes it a lot less likely that you'll accidentally delete or overwrite a filesystem, because its basic operations are creating a volume on free space and deleting a volume, rather than creating a volume on whatever was there before. – Gilles Feb 9 '11 at 22:47
  • @Peter.O That's a very complicated solution even if it's a good pratice to use it. – Kiwy Jan 17 '14 at 12:53
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Try this live CD: PartedMagic

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to find that there was another unformatted partition

Are you sure that this isn't your swap-partition? Beside from that I would recommend LVM as mentioned before by slashdot.

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I've resized my partition successfully without the loss of any data using the method described here, which generally is about deleting the current partition and creating a new one with the same start and a greater end.

But that is probably not the recommended way, especially when the partition to be resized is in between other partitions, because, in my case I had to remove all my partitions (primary storage and swap) and had to recreate them all.

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