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Partitioning - one of the hardest steps in a Linux installation

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If you happen to use a Microsoft operating system you are most likely to be familiar with finding your partitions using drive letters, such as C: and D:. When you pop in your brand new Ubuntu CD and start the installation, you will notice that there are no C and D drives, but instead lots of letter and number combinations. Do you feel lost? Let’s work it out.

First of all it is important to grasp the idea behind partitions. Standard computers usually only have one partition on the hard-drive which is called C: in Windows. A partition is simply a way of grouping information on your drive into chunks. If you only see one drive in Windows, you probably have a partition which spans the entire disk.

When looking at the drive and partitions in Linux, it will look somewhat different. There is first of all no concept of drive letters, but instead device names and mount points.

A Linux system has a root file-system called / and there other file-systems may be added, such as a /home for user files, similar to Documents and Settings in Windows.

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