Dual-boot Mandriva/XP - trying to create a USB backup disk for both
Greetings, all. Having successfully installed from the Mandriva One 2009.1 CD a week ago, I now have WinXP and Mandriva Linux 2009 Spring working dual-boot on the home PC. One thing I'd very much like to do is a backup, which I normally do on XP to a Maxtor Onetouch III (80GB)USB drive, and as it has plenty of spare room I thought "Why not use it for both?" According to LQ's HCL, the Maxtor should be compatible. I'm now wondering whether in fact it's possible.
Using the Mandriva Control Centre, I shrunk the Maxtor's NTFS partition to 37GB and then tried to set up the other 37GB for linux. I decided on journalised FS:ext3 as this is the file system in the linux partition, but there was a further question to answer: what mount point should it be? Several options, but I settled on /var/www as that appeared to have nothing else on it, and I can change it later (I hope) if there's a better place for it. Anyway, it got formatted and I answered "yes" to "Save the /etc/fstab mods?".
Result: the linux system sees (with Dolphin) both partitions. The NTFS one is OK, folders and files are accessible and it can be safely unloaded. The ext3 one, although it comes up on screen, cannot be safely unloaded. The error message is: org.freedesktop.HAL.Device.Volume not mounted by HAL. Device to unmount is not in /media/hal-mtab so is not mounted by HAL". True enough, /media seems to be empty.
FWIW, over on XP I find that although I can still read and write to its resized partition I can't now safely unload the disc there either - I get a "Please try later" message.
So, is what I'm trying to do possible, and if so what steps have I left out or done wrong? I'd happily Read The Famous Manual, only there doesn't appear to be one (and searching on LQ and elsewhere hasn't turned up anything on this subject yet).
I suppose the easy way out would be to just buy another USB disc (but that would mean spending money . . . )