Ubuntu – Extend partition on freed space: resize OR move&resize OR create new partition

gpartedpartitioning

I have Windows and Ubuntu partitions on my computer, and what I want is to use some space taken from a Windows partition for my file partition on Ubuntu.

I booted a USB-live Ubuntu, opened Gparted, and here is a picture of my partitions:
my partitions

/dev/sda7 is the system partition of my Ubuntu.
I would like to use the freed space (38.19GB) for the /dev/sda8 partition. I see three options:

1) extend /dev/sda7 to the left to occupy the non-allocated space, shrink it by the same amount (38.19GB) to the right, then extend /dev/sda8 to the left by the same amount.

OR

2) move /dev/sda7 to the left to occupy the non-allocated space, then extend /dev/sda8 to the left to recover the 38.19GB. PROBLEM: When doing it in Gparted (without confirming), I get a warning message saying that I could probably be unable to boot on my Ubuntu (which is on /dev/sda7) if I move it.

OR

3) Do not touch /dev/sda7 and /dev/sda8 but create a new partition at the non-allocated space, which I would use as additional partition when /dev/sda8 is full.

Which of these three options should I use?

Which one is advised or not, and why?

By "advised" I mean safe for my Ubuntu system and data (I want to have my usual Ubuntu exactly as before after rebooting, but with more space available for my files).

In option 1, would the extension to the left of my system partition /dev/sda7 be a problem? (in terms of booting, performance, or other…)
Option 2 is probably not advised because I would end up with a non-bootable Ubuntu, but I mention it in case the other options have more drawbacks.

EDITS:

  • I backed up my files, but not my Ubuntu system, and I am worried about Gparted not recommending to move partition /dev/sda7 (Ubuntu system) in option 2. Any explanation on the risks when moving this partition would be appreciated.

  • My plan is to remove /dev/sda5 in the future.

Best Answer

  • Make sure that you have a good backup of your important Ubuntu files, as this procedure can corrupt or loose data.

    Keep these things in mind:

    • always start the entire procedure with issuing a swapoff on any mounted swap partitions, and end the entire procedure with issuing a swapon on that same swap partition

    • a move is done by pointing the mouse pointer at the center of a partition and dragging it left/right with the hand cursor

    • a resize is done by dragging the left/right side of a partition to the left/right with the directional arrow cursor

    • if any partition can't be moved/resized graphically, you may have to manually enter the specific required numeric data (don't do this unless I instruct you to)

    • you begin any move/resize by right-clicking on the partition in the lower part of the main window, and selecting the desired action from the popup menu, then finishing that action in the new move/resize window

    Do the following...

    Note: if the procedure doesn't work exactly as I outline, STOP immediately and DO NOT continue.

    • boot the a Ubuntu Live DVD/USB
    • start gparted
    • move sda7 partition all the way left
    • move sda8 partition all the way left
    • resize sda8 right side all the way to the right

    If it looks good, click the Apply button.

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