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Is there a way to create a data partition and transfer your current user data to it if you didn't select the option at installation? Thanks
If you have room on your hard disk you can create a new partition, format it to whatever file system you require, then, after it's mounted, you can copy data from the old partition, to the one you just created.
I use Fedora 15 KDE, and, there is an app called Disk Utility, which is a GUI that allows me to see my hard disk info, format partitions and mount and unmount the partitions. I personally would use a LiveCD called Parted Magic to do the partitioning and formatting. It's easier if you're not doing it from within your Linux install. I would then add the partition to /etc/fstab so it would be automatically mounted each time I boot up.
Certain distros have slightly different rules for setting up the mounting and unmounting process, due to advancements in the way they handle the boot sequence. Fedora uses systemd, and the mounting process is a bit different from Ubuntu which uses upstart. Then again, you can just mount the new partition temporarily from the terminal using the mount command.
So, yes it's possible. One just has to be careful when repartitioning the hard disk, and, if you want the new partition to be automatically mounted, putting the correct line into /etc/fstab.
We can help you more if you tell us what version of Ubuntu you're running, and how much space you have left on your hard disk. I don't have an Ubuntu install running at the moment, but, a couple of the other moderators and contributors do, so, if your patient, others will probably come along and give some more exact info on what gets put into Ubuntu's /etc/fstab.
Parted Magic boots up from the LiveCD and runs in memory and you can download the latest version here:
One must be careful though when adding the new partition, so as not to disturb the partitions that contain your current install.
Any other questions feel free to ask.
I am running Ubuntu 11.04. I have about 100 gigs left on my hard drive. Can i simply shrink my existing partition and use that as a blank space to create a new partition in? Also, once i have the new partition created and the data copied, can i then have ubuntu look for and save personal data in the new partition? Essentially i want the location of /home to be on the new partition. Thanks for the advice.
The best way to change the partitions is to use an Ubuntu install disk. Boot up into the Live environment and run 'GParted'. You'll want to shrink your current partition, but I wouldn't shrink it all the way to the current used size. If you have 100GB over, your best bet is to make the new one about 60-70GB. Then you can just transfer your data over to that. Basically, yes it's easy to do and won't take long.
Here are instructions to move your /home partition over to the new partition: http://embraceubuntu.com/2006/01/29/move-home-to-its-own-partition/