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If yes, then how to do it? (In linux(Ubuntu) and in Windows). I know some usage of fdisk? So if it is possible using fdisk, any information would be much appreciated?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Apr 9 '11 at 22:19

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Do you want data on either filesystem to persist? I've seen people do some goofy tricks to get their Windows pagefile.sys to be stored on the same partition as their Linux swap file; delete the 'other one' at boot up. Or do you want to access identical data from both systems? Or are you just trying to avoid creating a new extended partition on a drive to store two smaller partitions within it? –  sarnold Apr 9 '11 at 22:13

5 Answers 5

I think that maybe for your goal(coexisting Windows and Ubuntu in a single partition) could be useful install Windows on an NTFS partition and then install Ubuntu from the Windows operating system with Wubi.

Using Wubi you can install Ubuntu Linux like an application of your windows main OS, hence you don't need to create two partition.

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You could in theory have multiple filesystems on a single partition, but you'll probably have trouble actually mounting the second filesystem. Mounting tools typically only mount partitions, thus your second filesystem (that starts half way through a partition) would not be accessible.

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In theory, one might be able to concoct some scheme where one filesystem writes data starting at the beginning of the partition and the other starts at the end but the myriad problems which would arise from such a setup have pretty well deterred anyone from developing such a system.

You can certainly set up a virtual file system that lives inside a file on a parent filesystem but it would not be a true "bare-metal" filesystem and from the outside the partition would appear to only have one filesystem. Such virtual volumes are used in many places from the Windows pagefile.sys to encrypted drive containers in TrueCrypt.

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I would recommend against two OSes in one partition. All OS want to have the boot partition installed on the Native file type (Windows on NTFS, Linux on ext3 [or other Linux based Filesystem]). There are several dependencies in the OS that assume require this that it is not really worth the effort, except in very special circumstances.

If you want to install Ubuntu, run Parted Magic on your drive and you repartition your drive to make room for an Ubuntu partition.

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You can create a (virtually unlimited) number of file systems on a single partition when using ZFS. The main issue in your case is there would be no way to directly access it from Windows.

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