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I am using Windows Vista on my machine.

I want to install Fedora. What all partitions should I have before starting to install? Are there any precautions etc that should be taken? I do not want to mess up my Windows.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

When you will install Fedora, you can use the Partition Wizard that comes with it. It's easy to use and should not mess up your Windows installation but in fact will create a dual boot.

I have installed Fedora 11 alongside Windows 7 and all works perfectly. I had a 100GB partition for Windows and around 50GB free space left. I created a boot (ext3) + root (ext4) + swap partition in the free space and started the installation. Fedora detected the correct Windows 7 partition and booting Win7 works without problems

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so you created normal (NTFS) partitions and then installed Fedora... and then Fedora recognised those partitions itself? – Lazer Feb 20 '10 at 17:12
Yes. It also should be easier with newer Fedora version. I install Fedora Core 2 – r0ca Feb 20 '10 at 17:19
okay.. one last thing... I have ~30GB. How should I divide it into the three partitions - boot (ext3) + root (ext4) + swap partition ? – Lazer Feb 20 '10 at 17:22
For linux it's way enough. So yes – r0ca Feb 20 '10 at 17:29
How should I divide it into the three partitions - boot (ext3) + root (ext4) + swap partition? – Lazer Feb 20 '10 at 17:33

You should have 1 for Vista and at least 1 for Fedora. Most people would recommend separate partitions for /, /boot, and /home at minimum though. So you will need between 1 and 4 extra partitions.

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Do I need to make those partitions before installing Fedora? – Lazer Feb 20 '10 at 17:12
no, you just need the space available – MDMarra Feb 20 '10 at 19:46

If you absolutely want to avoid any possibility of messing up your existing operating system installation, and don't mind a minor performance hit, you might want to consider installing Sun's VirtualBox and install Fedora within the virtual machine. Installing the Guest Additions is also a good idea.

If you're unhappy with your virtual OS, simply delete it and start over! Or, if you have enough HDD space, experiment with other OSes.

I guess I'm suggesting this as an alternative to creating partitions on your hard drive because I too would not want to mess things up by mistake. Yes, there are a thousand How-Tos on the internet. I just prefer to keep one OS on the hard drive that will be my workhorse, and virtualize any other OSes I might need.

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