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I have a functioning 64-bit Windows 8/Ubuntu dual boot system with 2 hard drive partitions. I have a 620GB Partition for Windows, followed by 30GB of unallocated space, and then 28GB Ubuntu Logical Drive partition.

I would like to incorporate that unallocated space into the Ubuntu partition but because it precedes it in the partition the windows disk manager won't let me extend it backwards.

How can I move the Ubuntu partition so that the unallocated space is after it.

If possible, I'd like to do this from entirely from Windows.

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2 Answers 2

I don't think the Windows disk management utility will let you move partitions. I'd suggest a third party tool like EaseUS Partition Master. It's free and will run in Windows. It does require a reboot after you specify your changes, during which time EaseUS will rearrange the partitions however you've specified.

http://download.cnet.com/EaseUS-Partition-Master-Home-Edition/3000-2248_4-10863346.html

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DON'T USE WINDOWS UTILITIES TO MODIFY LINUX PARTITIONS! The tools that Microsoft provides don't understand Linux filesystems, so at best they'll refuse to work, and at worst they'll cause data corruption. Third-party utilities like EaseUS or Partition Wizard might work, but I'd be wary of them simply because I'm not familiar with them or their capabilities.

The safest way to make use of that space in Linux is to create a new partition in that space and then copy some of your Linux files into that area. For instance, you could copy your Linux /home directory contents there and then mount it at /home. This page provides detailed instructions on how to do this. A Web search will turn up many more pages with such instructions, too.

If you want to keep everything for Ubuntu in one partition, you can do so, but it's a bit riskier, since you'll need to increase the Ubuntu partition's size by adjusting the partition's start point. This involves a lot of changes to the filesystem data structures, and will probably involve moving a lot of data. Bugs, I/O errors, power failures, and other problems can all wreak havoc with such operations. Most people who attempt such operations have no problems, but some end up losing data. Therefore, backing up everything important is worthwhile if you attempt this route. The basic procedure is to boot using an emergency system (the Ubuntu installer in its "try before installing" mode will work, as will emergency discs like Parted Magic or System Rescue CD. You should then launch GParted and use it to move and resize your partitions. If I'm correctly interpreting your description, you'll probably need to first adjust the size of the extended partition that holds your logical partition and then move/resize the Linux partition. When you're done, it's possible you'll need to re-install your boot loader, but if you're lucky that won't be necessary.

One caveat: You referred to Linux as residing in an "Ubuntu Logical Drive partition." I'm interpreting that to mean a logical partition, which is a conventional partition in the MBR partition scheme. It's possible, though, that you mean you've got a Linux LVM configuration and that Linux resides in a logical volume within that setup. If this is the case, then the best way to proceed is to create a new partition and add it to your volume group. You can then either expand your Ubuntu logical volume or create a new logical volume, as you see fit. If you're not sure which setup you've got, try posting the output of the following command, typed within Linux:

df -h

That will provide the information needed to determine if you're using a conventional partition setup or an LVM setup.

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