New XBMC Linux partition setup (Linux vs Windows)
#1
Hi!

Bought the ASRock ION 330 and have tried different installations (Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, XBMC Live, Ubuntu + XBMC).
Conclusion led me to install a "XBMCbuntu" version (I'm making a guide for ASRock ION 330 HTPC setup)

Since the ASRock ION 330 came with a 2.5” HDD 320GB HD I'm wondering what is the best way to partition my disk?

I have a Windows Network (AD 2003 domain) which primarly servers my services and media files already + ReadyNAS 4TB with CIFS activated.

Suggestion 1:
20 GB: Linux Partitions, XBMC.
300 GB: Windows partition, Storage (NTFS)

Suggestion 2:
320 GB: Linux Partitions, XBMC, Storage.
  • Is it anything I need to consider having mixed Windows and Linux paritions?
  • Can Linux (XBMC) access the other NTFS partition?
  • Can Linux share out the other NTFS partition (like a Windows Workstation)?
  • Recommandations pro vs cons?

Thanks in advance!
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#2
I know for xp its best to install windows first prior to linux.

Quote:"Unfortunately XP isn't so adaptive at handling existing partitions during installation. It detects the two Ubuntu partitions and marks then C: and E: accordingly. The remaining unpartitioned space which is available for XP will be marked as F:.

For the operating system and the vast majority of Windows applications which have properly-coded installation scripts, this is not a problem. Some older applications will assume that C: is the system partition and may bring up errors. There are ways of changing the drive letter assignation of the system partition, but in this scenario it's strongly discouraged. "
http://apcmag.com/how_to_dual_boot_linux...htm?page=4
Motherboard P5N7A-VM, E8400 C2D 3.0 processor. NVIDIA 9300 graphics card. OpenELEC Stable - Generic x86_64 Version:3.2.4
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#3
Well in short: If you're not planning to run windows on the box, there's no point in having a windows filesystem on the box. You would loose security, speed and reliability if going NTFS/FAT. Also note that 20GB is way too much for the system. My HTPC setup takes roughly 2GB for the system, the rest is storage.
Always read the XBMC online-manual, FAQ and search the forum before posting.
Do not e-mail XBMC-Team members directly asking for support. Read/follow the forum rules.
For troubleshooting and bug reporting please make sure you read this first.
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#4
I was not planning on running Windows on this box. But I just got an idea to install Linux Mint on the other partition.
  • Would this cause problems?
  • Does Linux provide a dual boot option?
  • Can you set the dual boot to go default to each other?

Also, I think I remember that XBMC Live made many "wierd" paritions when I installed XBMC on my box last time. Any reason for this.

New suggestions:
5 GB - XBMC
225 GB - Linux Mint + Storage


Thanks again for good answers!
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#5
  • Would this cause problems? no
  • Does Linux provide a dual boot option? yes (grub, the bootloader has)
  • Can you set the dual boot to go default to each other? yes

I'd go for this:
4-6GB for the main xbmc installation, ext3 filesystem
2-4GB of swapspace (max the double amount of RAM), shared between both linux distros
4-6GB for mint, ext3
rest storage, ext3 with "largefile" flag

This is a bit out of xbmc in general. I suggest reading the Ubuntu wiki for all things linux which is a nice start for linux beginners.
Always read the XBMC online-manual, FAQ and search the forum before posting.
Do not e-mail XBMC-Team members directly asking for support. Read/follow the forum rules.
For troubleshooting and bug reporting please make sure you read this first.
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#6
Thanks again Haggy, you'we been a great help today.

Yes, I should have read alot more about Linux/Ubuntu.
It's just that I wanted to get my HTPC box up running with as less effort as possible. I thought XBMC Live would provide all I needed, but found out I wanted to "tweak" is a little more than I planned.

Tried to read about different distros, KDE, Gnome, Linux commands and so on, started on friday - way too much information! Smile

Anyways, I'm going to give it a try with all the good feedback I have now.

PS: Does Linux allocate more RAM then Windows on 4GB? (Windows 3,3 GB Software / 0,7 GB Hardware). Have installed 4 GB, so if I follow your example I need to make a 8 GB swapdrive.

Thanks again, great support!
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#7
cyberpark Wrote:Thanks again Haggy, you'we been a great help today.

Yes, I should have read alot more about Linux/Ubuntu.
It's just that I wanted to get my HTPC box up running with as less effort as possible. I thought XBMC Live would provide all I needed, but found out I wanted to "tweak" is a little more than I planned.

Tried to read about different distros, KDE, Gnome, Linux commands and so on, started on friday - way too much information! Smile

Anyways, I'm going to give it a try with all the good feedback I have now.

PS: Does Linux allocate more RAM then Windows on 4GB? (Windows 3,3 GB Software / 0,7 GB Hardware). Have installed 4 GB, so if I follow your example I need to make a 8 GB swapdrive.

Thanks again, great support!

Thanks for the flowers Smile

Just be tolerant to yourself. If you're not used to Linux a lot of stuff looks weird and complicated at first sight. Reading is the key (as always) - but especially Linux has such a great community documentation for virtually any wish or problem.

Enough of the praisings. Regarding your last question: Linux allocates RAM quite different to windows. It tries to use every bit of available RAM by caching as much data as possible for quick access. So it's perfectly normal if a Linux system shows 99% memory eaten. Your swap partition however should not exceed 4GB. The hint with twice the size of RAM is rather old when machines had less than 2GB RAM. Nowadays make it as big as your RAM if you have 4 or even more. Also please do yourself the favor and stick to a 32bit distro as xbmc has known problems on 64bit. You could use a PAE-enabled kernel to fully use all available ram (not just 3.5gb), but IMHO that's not worth it (and PAE MAY slow things down).
Always read the XBMC online-manual, FAQ and search the forum before posting.
Do not e-mail XBMC-Team members directly asking for support. Read/follow the forum rules.
For troubleshooting and bug reporting please make sure you read this first.
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#8
go linux and don't go back! XBMC runs amazing and it truly is the best media center for the buck (hardware) on the market.

Make sure you stay out of windows, it's better for humanity!
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#9
One benefit I can think of with having a small windows partition and storage on NTFS is when using external scrappers like EMM and MIP
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#10
>>X<< Wrote:One benefit I can think of with having a small windows partition and storage on NTFS is when using external scrappers like EMM and MIP

why do you use scrappers like that? Language specific stuff? I find that TMDB and TVDB are both absolutely amazing. Both could use more work on their API but I believe they are working on it. And more importantly is why do these external scrapers need NTFS file system?
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#11
ulchm Wrote:why do you use scrappers like that? Language specific stuff? I find that TMDB and TVDB are both absolutely amazing. Both could use more work on their API but I believe they are working on it. And more importantly is why do these external scrapers need NTFS file system?

External scrappers also use TMDB and TVDB

You have more control over artwork and info etc and everything is stored locally with the movie so if your media is on a server and there's more than one xbmc client it saves you setting up scrapping everything twice

As for NTFS I'll think your find windows won't read and write to ext3 without a little tweak
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#12
Haggy Wrote:I'd go for this:
4-6GB for the main xbmc installation, ext3 filesystem
2-4GB of swapspace (max the double amount of RAM), shared between both linux distros
4-6GB for mint, ext3
rest storage, ext3 with "largefile" flag

Hi again, first "showstopper".. Mount Points!
What should I fill in on mount points here? My setup now is:
  • 6 GB: XBMC (ext3)
  • 4 GB: Swap
  • 10 GB: Mint (ext3)
  • 300 GB: Storage (ext3, Largefile)

Can I choose whatever I want? Is it like "Driveletters" in Windows? like C:/D:/E: and so on....
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#13
>>X<< Wrote:External scrappers also use TMDB and TVDB

You have more control over artwork and info etc and everything is stored locally with the movie so if your media is on a server and there's more than one xbmc client it saves you setting up scrapping everything twice

As for NTFS I'll think your find windows won't read and write to ext3 without a little tweak


Gotcha makes more sense now. We probably shouldn't get into decentralizing XBMC too much in this thread though!
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#14
cyberpark Wrote:Can I choose whatever I want? Is it like "Driveletters" in Windows? like C:/D:/E: and so on....

Drive letters don't really exist in the linux world. You can mount drives wherever you want in any folder etc. I often times use /media/ and make my mounts in there.

Hope that helps!
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#15
cyberpark Wrote:Hi again, first "showstopper".. Mount Points!
What should I fill in on mount points here? My setup now is:
  • 6 GB: XBMC (ext3)
  • 4 GB: Swap
  • 10 GB: Mint (ext3)
  • 300 GB: Storage (ext3, Largefile)

Can I choose whatever I want? Is it like "Driveletters" in Windows? like C:/D:/E: and so on....

6gb xbmc would be your new root filesystem (/). swap has no mountpoint. 10gb mint is also root (/), but from a mint viewpoint. don't mount it in your xbmc installation. i'd mount storage into /mnt/storage, but that's personal preference.
Always read the XBMC online-manual, FAQ and search the forum before posting.
Do not e-mail XBMC-Team members directly asking for support. Read/follow the forum rules.
For troubleshooting and bug reporting please make sure you read this first.
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