Prepare a computer for Linux or just organise files
Most hard disks supplied with Windows appear as just that, a single disk. Linux requires that the hard disk is split into several sections called partitions and sometimes this must be done before installation. Gparted is a utility for Linux and this download is a Live CD version so a working installation of Linux is not required.
There are also advantages to splitting disks in Windows. As the software supplied with Windows cannot resize partitions Gparted has a place for Windows users as well.
Reboot the computer with this disk in the drive and a special version of Linux runs. This is quite safe as it will only access the hard disks when told to do so. It should work with the hardware in the computer without any intervention but it is possible to change options to work with particularly old or new hardware.
It can detect and create all kinds of disk partitions: FAT16, FAT32 and NTFS for Windows, and ext2, ext3, linux-swap, reiser4 and reiserfs for Linux.
Partitions can be created, deleted, renamed and resized. Jobs are added to a queue and only performed when asked. An attempt to resize a NTFS partition on a test computer did fail although the GParted website says this is possible.
As it is a working version of Linux, there are some other utilities including a simple text editor and a file manager. There is even a Tetris game for lighter moments.
Don't forget that even though this is a very simple program to use, working with the partitions of a disk is a risky business with a risk of destroying the data held on the disk. Always make a full backup before editing partitions.
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