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i have dived into the waters of linux 3 days ago when i installed kubuntu 6.06. so far i really like it. after some initial torubles here and there i managed to get everything working. more or less.
anyway i'd like to know is writing and reading on a fat32 partition 100% safe on linux? this because i have one 120gb ide drive, which was once a ntfs file system, on which i store all my REALLY important data. i know linux can read ntfs, read and write on fat32, so i used partition magic to convert it to fat32. i'd like to know how good is the support for fat32? there are no risks of damaging the drive or anything? sorry if i sound silly but the drive contains some really important data and i need some reassurance, after one guy told me that other file systems than ext2, ext3 don't work so well in linux, frequent crashes and such.
Distribution: Ubuntu, Debian, Various using VMWare
If your data is crucially important, make sure that you have a good backup strategy for it. For example, regularly burn it to DVD. No filesystem is 100% safe, and no disk is 100% fail-proof.
As for "frequent crashes", I assume that Linux itself has been installed on an Ext3 partition. As long as your FAT32 partition is only for data, you will not have any problems at all with stability.
Out of curiosity, how are you accessing the FAT32 partition? As long as you don't have your /home partition on a FAT32 partition, you won't have any problems. One thing to look at is security. IIRC, FAT32 does not have any permissions, so every file will be world readable. This may or may not be OK in your situation.
Presumably, you are dual-booting, and using the FAT32 partition so you can access your data from both Linux and Windows. If not, you should really use a native Linux partition, such as Ext3. In the event of a crash, you are less likely to lose data from an ext3 partition than from FAT32.
i didn't mean any partition is 100% safe as if no crashes can or will occur, i meant that as in linux has absolutely no problems working with a fat32 partition. i see now, they work normally with each other, that's the important thing.
yes kubuntu was installed on a ext3 partition, and the home partition was installed on ext3 as well. this was done precisely because someone advised me linux doesn't work that well with fat32. i didn't know that about file permissions and fat32..
yes, i am dual-booting with xp. i installed some drivers which make it possible to read and write on ext3 partition. so maybe i should convert it to ext3. though i don't know if partition magic can do that..