lately I have been working a lot on my desktop computer, 3 months, leaving behind my laptop. I've been using Ubuntu Karmic Koala a lot, working with many applications and installing lots of useful software. When the new year will begin I will have to hit the road again and leave behing my desktop. That's a pity since I'm enjoying my setup a lot. So I was wondering if is it there a way to transfer all my Linux setup on my laptop, with all the same settings (except hardware of course) and applications (libraries, development tools...). I thought of just copying the partition with clonezilla but I even asked myself if this will actually work. Then there is the not so secondary problem that I'd have to shrink the partition. So, do you have advice on this?

Happy new year to all :D


If you've mostly been using the built in package management to install applications, I would suggest simply dumping the list of packages installed on your desktop and installing them on your laptop. You should then be able to just copy over your $HOME folder, and your apps should have all their settings back.

This question on stackoverflow has a couple of ways of doing just that.

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In fact, it will work. You might have some problems installing GRUB though. You might have to load from Ubuntu CD and enter magic grub command after copying partition.

As for resizing, as far as I know most of Linux partitions support resizing. You just have to get tools for your particular one and read man.

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  • And what are those magic resizing tools? Will Gparted Work? – user19203 Dec 26 '09 at 16:03
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    If you set up your partitions with LVM, you can easily resize them from the command line (google LVM admin). If not, you could try Ubuntu's partitioner as the first option (let Ubuntu handle it), or Gparted should work. Just back up your important stuff in case it doesn't. If you want to make sure all is working correctly, use something like VirtualBox to create a VM and test it there first. – Joe Internet Dec 26 '09 at 16:21
  • In addition, there's CLI tool for every filesystem. resize2fs can handle ext2 and ext3 ones. It is in e2fsprogs package. – vava Dec 27 '09 at 1:21

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