Here is my situation. I'm currently in the process of attempting to triple-boot (or technically quad-boot I guess) my pc with Windows 7, Ubuntu 10.04 LTS, and Mac OS X Leopard. And I have my pc booting into DOS and from there I load Grub4DOS.

I partitioned my hard drive like this.

[DOS 100mb] [Windows7 200gb] [Ubuntu 50gb] [unpartitioned 4gb] [Leopard 50gb]

My problem, or at least the first problem I have encountered, is that I need to create a swap space for Ubuntu. When I try to do that in gParted with the unpartitioned 4gb, it tells me I can't have more than 4 primary partitions.

So after getting that message, I put in my Ubuntu disk because I figured I could do it during the installation. Well, Ubuntu lists the unused 4gb as "unusable."

I don't understand why gParted won't let me create a swap space partition because it shouldn't be a primary partition, right? And I don't understand why the Ubuntu installation cannot use the unused 4gb to make a swap space either.

Any help would be fantastic.


I assume that both DOS, Windows7, Ubuntu and Leopard are primary partitions in this setup:

You can only have 4 primary partitions for every physical disk. You can work around this problem by creating an extended partition (which is a primary partition which can be used for secondary partitions), which then again contains a swap-partition.

Achieving this will probably prove to be difficult without having to move data around (e.g. you need to remove one of the existing partitions and create en extended one).

Note: Every harddrive can only have one extended partition.

| improve this answer | |
  • I think I understand what you're saying. It shouldn't be too difficult to create the extended partition because the Ubuntu and Leopard partitions are still blank. I haven't actually installed them yet. I hadn't gotten that far. – Thomas B. Aug 28 '10 at 22:59
  • That was a breeze! Took all of 5 minutes. You rock man! – Thomas B. Aug 28 '10 at 23:07

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