Tag Archives: computers

Adding a second internal SSD drive to a system

Having done a memory upgrade to my HP EliteDesk 705 G2 SFF system, it was time to add more storage. It came with a 256GB SSD, and I added the 512GB that I had taken from an old laptop. Since I was leaving the original drive in place and simply adding a drive, the process was much simpler than in the drive replacements I have done. The whole thing would have been trivial if I had put the new drive in an external USB 3 adapter. USB 3 is fast, but imposing the USB/SATA conversion would add some overhead, so I decided to open up the machine and make another SATA connection. There was a free SATA power connector inside, but I had to add an extension cable to reach any plausible place to put a new drive. Fortunately, there was a free SATA data cable already present. I put the new drive into a 2.5″/3.5″ mount, but there were no holes to screw it into the obvious place. This is a problem I have faced before, and I used the same remedy: Duct tape.
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Downsizing a disk

I have an old laptop which I do not use often. I had installed a 512GB SSD on it, but decided to replace it with a 256GB SSD so I could use the larger drive on a more modern system. Once again, I planned to used Macrium Reflect Free to clone the drive. This is a lot harder when you want to clone a larger drive to a smaller one. I had to delete my Linux partitions and shrink the Windows one with gparted on my Linux boot repair disk. My total space in use was well under 256GB but Macrium still objected. Examination revealed that I had forgotten to shrink the extended partition in which my Linux partitions had resided. So I fixed that. Still no joy. There was a big (>256GB) gap between the end of the extended partition and the last Windows partition. So I moved that partition inward to leave all the free space at the end. This finally satisfied Macrium Reflect Free and it was able to clone the drive.

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A Computer Memory Upgrade

Having experienced resourse limitations on an HP EliteDesk 705 G2 SFF I decided to add more memory to it. It has four slots for memory and came with two 4GB memory modules. I ordered two 8GB modules from Crucial, where you can search for upgrades compatible with your particular computer model. These arrived and I proceeded to install them, hoping for a 24GB system. This proved to be trickier than I had expected. Continue reading

Duct tape disk

Following up on Installing Debian Linux I decided to replace that machines’s hard drive by a 500GB SSD. This went quite smoothly. The only hitch was that the 3.5″ SSD mounting bracket for the 2.5″ SSD did not have any any screw holes to match those in the space left behind by the old 3.5″ drive. So I ended up securing it with duct tape!

I also had to reinstall Debian. The free edition of Macrium did not have an obvious way to transfer the Debian partition from its external USB drive to the new internal SSD, even though there was plenty of space. I expect this can be done, but I did not have the knowledge. I could have left Debian on the USB drive, but the new SSD had space for it and I have too many USD devices hanging off that machine anyway.

Adding new disk partitions to a Linux system

The default Ubuntu installation process places all of the files in a single disk partition. However, it may be desirable to use multiple partitions. In particular you might want to have /home in its own partition and have yet another partition for the swap area. This way you could install another Linux distribution and have it share the swap area and /home, so you can save swap space and share your data files between the distributions. I have done this successfully on another system. In that case I created the multiple partitions when installing the distributions. For the Ubuntu installer it is the “something else” option when you choose how you are going to use your disk. It is fussier than following the defaults, but easier than the Slackware disk partitioning I used to do.

What if you followed the default Ubuntu install process and want to create additional partitions after the fact? That is what I wanted to do before I ended up Rebuilding a Linux System.

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Installing Debian Linux

After Rebuilding a Linux System I decided to see if I could add another distribution to it. I was short of space on the hard drive, but I had a 250GB SSD. Unfortunately, on opening up the computer I could not see an easy way to connect the drive internally. I did, nowever, have an external SSD case with a USB 3.0 connection, so I put the drive in there and connected it to a USB 3.0 port on the computer. Then I booted from the netinst iso for Debian 11. I set the root (/) partition on the new USB ssd, but used the same swap and /home partitions I had created for Ubuntu. I could not see any reason not to use the same swap partition and I am guessing that since Ubuntu and Debian are quite similar it will possible to share /home. We will see….
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A Linux System that booted slowly

Rebuilding a Linux System went well, but afterwards I realized that my new system was taking forever to boot. [SOLVED] Slow Boot w/errors suggested some ways to proceed. A first step was to edit /boot/grub/grub.cfg, replacing GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash" by GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="", to show all the messages in the boot process, and also get a quick look at where it might be hung up. Fine with me, I like to see all those messages. Also, the command systemd-analyze blame shows how much time each step was taking. The offender appeared to be on or just after mounting the root (/) partition.

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Rebuilding a Linux System

I meant this to be “Reconfiguring a Linux System,” but that is not how it turned out. I had followed the default Ubuntu installation process when I set up this system. I wanted to change it so that the swap area and /home would be in separate disk partitions, as decribed in these articles in How to Geek and Make Tech Easier. The first step in this process is to create the new partitions using GParted, which I have used before. GParted always gives dire warnings about the need to back up your files before using it. I have always heeded these warnings, but this was the first time the reason for them was brought home to me.

“Failure is always an option.”-Adam Savage