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Old 05-12-2012, 06:51 PM   #1
simongee
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Question Questions about repartitioning

Hey Mobileread!
Long-time lurker, first time poster here...
I want to repartition my internal storage and got a couple of questions, hope u can help me

Before i start, i want to make clear that i read and learned alot about tweaking my T1 thanks to u guys.
So first off a big And another big thanks goes out especially to rupor. LOVE ur work!
Currently im running rupors AMR package with the apps2sd package on top.
The main reason why i want to repartition the internal storage is that i cant move many apps to sd (8gb external sd) with the android-feature and i hate the link2sd crap. Generally im very careful with my gadgets and before i do any changes i make double-sure that i dont make mistakes.
So here it goes:

1. I am not a linux guy. So at first i thought, nah, that repartitioning is not for me, but then i read this in rupors "backup and rescue thread" here: http://www.the-ebook.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=23354
Quote:
However, it is possible using commercial software to completely change the size of data and system partitions never typing Linux commands are not entered into the terminal and using the calculator. The whole process takes 5 to 10 minutes and does not require a doctoral degree in yuniksologii and skriptografii. Requires Paragon Partition Manager Pro 11, the common sense and possession of a mouse. In this device is pretty hard to kill ...
I dont speak russian, so i have to follow rupor with the "help" of google-translate... which often gives me headaches btw...
So rupor, if u read this, or somebody else can answer:
Can i use MiniTool Partition Manager or any other free tool to do the job?

2. When repartitioning with a tool, i have to be in recovery mode, right? The easiest way to get there was imo to run the @TestMode tool on the T1 and select "boot to recovery". Maybe im too stupid but i cant start the tool using rupors AMR. Its there, i see it in the android settings, but its not on the page 3, so i cant start it.

3. When repartitioning with a tool, I first shrink the READER partition, then I enlarge the data and system partition as i like, right?

4. Do I have to do a backup first using the method of the thread i mentioned? I dont care about anything on my internal storage, got all books on the sd card. Will the reader still work as before after the job or will the partitions be wiped? Can I install the Sony FW after the job and then re-root? And what about future Sony updates? Will I be able to install them after repartitioning or not?

So thats it i guess, any help is appreciated. I would really like to do it, i just dont feel like i know enough...
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Old 05-12-2012, 07:14 PM   #2
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1. I used Paragon Partition Manager 11 on Windows XP running in VirtualBox virtual machine. There 3 things to know - do not touch partitions at the beginning (recovery, uboot, e,t,c), you need enough free space on your READER partition and you have to work one partition at a time starting from the biggest one and making sure operation is committed before doing next one (tool allows you to commit multiple operations in sequence or batch mode - do not use it!)

All necessary partitions (but /system) could be done "in-place" with all data intact in about 5 minutes. If you want to change /system (which is not necessary) - it is ext4 - and tool (despite what is declared) cannot handle it properly, so you have to use tar to save data, delete and create partition and restore.

2. Yes - you have to be in recovery mode with my backup and recovery SD card

3. Yes - you reduce READER partition and than move and enlarge next one e.t. c. There is one additional step - enlarging "extended" partition to which (if my memory does not fail me) data and system are children. Unfortunately I did it some time ago and do not remember all the details - but it was not difficult.

4. I did backup first and had to recover once in the middle of procedure because I was trying to do something tool was not capable of doing. So do backup - it takes several minutes and is easy.
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Old 05-12-2012, 07:15 PM   #3
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do you wanna brick your reader with no way back?

have you read this: http://wiki.mobileread.com/w/index.p...ternal_storage ?

here's what I did: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...3&postcount=48

I guess, partitioning with external tool like paragon over usb connection as described by rupor is possible, but you should pay attention on proper alignment of the partitions.

that's why I used fdisk via recovery console, which enables one to work sector wise.

also you must not mess up the boot area of the device, including the kernel / initrd partitions (mmcblk2p1 and mmcblk2p2). otherwise there will be no way to access the device anymore. there's a guy on the forum who destroyed his reader this way. irreversibly.

read this thread entirely: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...=163137&page=2
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Old 05-12-2012, 07:17 PM   #4
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All tools I looked at produced after some date do proper partition alignment - in Paragon 11 it is default mode and could be set in options
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Old 05-12-2012, 07:22 PM   #5
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but which block size does it align to?

on the reader, it should be 64*512 Bytes if I remember correctly...
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Old 05-12-2012, 07:25 PM   #6
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For all PC hard drives smaller than 2TB default sector size is 512 bytes. Only after disks went over this size manufacturers agreed to switch to 4096 Bytes. Those tools know about it - I did verified it before and after each operation with calculator (tool provides enough information ) resulting numbers where divisible by 64 and some small amount of "unused" space was left before or after each "new" partition if necessary.

I do agree with you however - reading info you pointed is a MUST!

Last edited by rupor; 05-12-2012 at 09:52 PM.
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Old 05-13-2012, 06:46 AM   #7
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Improper alignment won't break anything.

The deal with alignment and flash memory is, that the partition alignment must match the block size of the flash memory, otherwise write access becomes very slow.

As long as the tool aligns to something divisible by 64, everything should be ok.
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Old 05-14-2012, 05:36 AM   #8
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don't try the linux instructions on how to partition. instructions aren't concise or comprehensive. you'd have to read a bunch of different posts in order to find your way, and in the end still probably mess up -.- true story lol.

aside from using the test mode app, you can boot into recovery mode by holding home + menu until the bar reaches the right.

i personally used acronis true image to repartition. back up the entire disk first. this makes it easier as you don't have to work with the limitations of not being able to resize the data partition since its ext3. my memory is blury but i think what i did was delete system and data, created a new blank ext3 partition with size of my choosing and then simply restored the data partition on top of the blank. then restored system to the remaining free space.
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Old 05-14-2012, 07:39 AM   #9
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Thank you for your answers!

@rupor
I downloaded Paragon Partition Manager 11 Free Edition. Is there any advantage using that tool over MiniTool Partition Manager?

@uboot
Quote:
do you wanna brick your reader with no way back?
Noo! That’s why i made this thread! And yes, I read all the threads u mentioned and check the wiki on a regular basis. Thanks for setting it up and keeping it nice and tidy btw
As I said, im a very careful type of guy when it comes to modding my stuff, so I ask first… If I get confident enough to do this I also plan on adding a how-to to the wiki, so other non-linux-guys can repartition their device, too…

So here is what I gathered from your posts and what my plan is now, please correct me if I screwed up somewhere:

0.1 delete all apps and stuff from internal.
0.2 do the disable-asec package from rupor to uninstall the app2sd android feature. (won’t need it after repartitioning)
0.3 use boroda’s recovery pack to go back to stock and unroot
0.4 do factory reset to clean up everything
0.5 install latest rupor AMR package


1. go to recovery using the rupors backup and recovery SD card. (copy files to sd card, reboot + holding home + menu until the bar reaches the right)
2. plug in usb, choose NOT to format if windows prompts me , install drivers (gserial.inf)
3. backup the whole internal memory using the tool rupor used in his thread (Roadkil's Disk Image)
4. shrink the READER partition

Now im not sure anymore:
5. enlarge the /data partition (I plan to have it around 500MB). I see no point in enlarging /system.
- rupor and multiprose posted something about /system and /data being connected in some way, or not being resizeable? So I can’t simply enlarge the partition like I would do with a fat32/ntfs partition?
Quote:
delete system and data, created a new blank ext3 partition with size of my choosing and then simply restored the data partition on top of the blank. then restored system to the remaining free space.
So that’s how to do it? If so, next question comes to my mind. Rupor’s tool backs up everything at once resulting in one image, right? So I can’t restore individual parts of it. So I do it like this:
5.(?) delete /data (and /system partition (I have to delete both?)).
6.(?) make new, bigger /data partition (ext4) (and new /system partition (ext2)) -> according to the picture from rupor i attached... I plan /data to be around 500MB and would not touch /system if I don't have to...
7.(?) restore image created in step 3
8. disconnect usb. remove sd card. reboot. done
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Old 05-14-2012, 09:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simongee View Post
Thank you for your answers!
@rupor
I downloaded Paragon Partition Manager 11 Free Edition. Is there any advantage using that tool over MiniTool Partition Manager?
I do not know - I simply had Partition Manager 11 (and not the free one) handly at the moment.
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Old 05-14-2012, 12:52 PM   #11
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the full image won't help you with repartitioning. it's for backup purposes only. additionally, you will have to dump each partition one by one...

don't touch the first 2 partitions (the primary ones)!

you don't have to resize system partition. leave it as it is. app get installed to data partition.

data partition and reader partition do not have to be restored. simply format data to ext4 and reader to fat32. and give them the right labels (READER and data). uppon boot, the reader will re-initialize them.

all other partitions (system, fonts, etc.) are kept untouched. backup them one by one and then restore them one by one.

so the steps are:
1.) backup extended partitions (logical drives, mmcblk2p4...mmcblk10)
2.) delete extended partitions
3.) recreate extended partitions with the first one shrunken by the size you wanna enlarge data partition
4.) restore extended partitions
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:48 PM   #12
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Paragon and Actronis could resize partitions without loosing data - no need to backup restore each individual one. Exception is /system which is ext4
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Old 05-14-2012, 05:38 PM   #13
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ok great thanks again guys, you're helping me alot
The only thing thats still a little unclear to me is how to backup and restore the individual partitions one by one.
Tbh i dont need any stuff thats on there, so why cant i just instead of the steps uboot listed:
Quote:
so the steps are:
1.) backup extended partitions (logical drives, mmcblk2p4...mmcblk10)
2.) delete extended partitions
3.) recreate extended partitions with the first one shrunken by the size you wanna enlarge data partition
4.) restore extended partitions
just skip 1.), do 2.) and 3.) and flash your new 1.04 sd rescue after that? or boroda’s recovery pack? Not possible?

And i still have to decide which tool to use, since i dont have a paid partition tool, i was looking for a free one.
MiniTool Partition Wizard Home Edition 7.1 was my favourite, but i also got Paragon Partition Manager 11 Free Edition now.
Both should do the job, right? Any opinions?
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Old 05-15-2012, 06:00 AM   #14
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surely you can use the sd rescue package, but why?

have you ever used a partitioning tool to move / resize / backup / restore partitions?
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Old 05-15-2012, 08:06 AM   #15
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Quote:
surely you can use the sd rescue package, but why?
well as I said, i got a bit confused by your answer and was looking for an alternative, let me explain. You said
Quote:
the full image won't help you with repartitioning. it's for backup purposes only. additionally, you will have to dump each partition one by one...
(I knew how to do the full backup, but was not sure how to dump each partition by itself.) but then you said
Quote:
data partition and reader partition do not have to be restored. uppon boot, the reader will re-initialize them. all other partitions (system, fonts, etc.) are kept untouched. backup them one by one and then restore them one by one.
I was thinking well, I would only touch /data and READER. And upon reboot they would be re-initialized by the reader. So whats the point of doing any backup at all? Wouldn't it be easier to just delete - recreate - label - reboot? why backing up and restoring partitions i didnt even touch? On top of that I was going to start from a clean state anyway (cleanup/unroot->root->repartition) without any data on it i would lose. Thats why the rescue-packages came to my mind. They contain everything what has to be on the reader at that point.

Quote:
have you ever used a partitioning tool to move / resize / backup / restore partitions?
Yes i have, but I said I'm nor a linux-guy. I used it to resize/move/create partitions on my external hdd and on my laptop. But the only filesystems I worked with are ntfs/fat/fat32. I never had to backup/restore a partition, I just copy/pasted the content...
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