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As a note, I read the other threads and thus far none of their problems seem to be identical to mine. So I will elaborate.
I was using Ubuntu 5 and when I would plug in my external hard drive (USB 2.0) everything worked fine. It mounted automatically and I could use it as one would expect. I recently upgraded to 6.06 but I am having trouble that I cannot describe. Let me explain some symptoms.
jessica@jessica-laptop:/media$ fdisk -l
Disk /dev/sda: 160.0 GB, 160041885696 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 19457 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
This doesn't look like a partition table
Probably you selected the wrong device.
Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 ? 1 19457 156288321 7 HPFS/NTFS
The top part is right, it's a 160GB drive, etc. The second part though seems to be giving me a pretty odd form of an error. I haven't ever seen this before and haven't found any threads with this problem.
Also, I used GParted to see what it thought about the situation.
It also recognizes a /dev/sda1 partition on the 160GB drive, but has an "!" next to sda1 and it doesn't give me any further information about the specific partition. In information, it basically just says that it can't read from it and "Did you install the correct plugin for this file system?"
So right now it seems that it recognizes the harddrive but not the partition. I haven't done anything to modify it, and it still works fine in windows XP, so I don't think this is a problem with the drive. I tried modifying my fstab and mounting it, but then I get this:
jessica@jessica-laptop:/etc$ sudo mount -a
mount: special device /dev/sda1 does not exist
You have a 160GB drive. Fat32 cannot support a partition larger than 132 some odd GB.
My dad had a 160GB internal hard drive under Windows 98, and he couldn't use all of it because of that problem.
Keep it NTFS. Just install the NTFS drivers and you should be fine.
If you want to try something that MIGHT work (emphasis on the might part):
Install KwickDisk (my spelling may be incorrect on that). It mounts stuff that I find really hard to mount since I'm not that good at editing /etc/fstab by hand. It might work, it might not. I'm sorry I don't know of a Gnome equivalent, but there isn't a Kubuntu forum and so there are both Gnome and KDE users in this forum so I have to try and do my best to support both.
DO NOT FORMAT AS FAT32!!! Unless you want to have part of your drive unusable or have multiple partitions, both of which would be bad (IMHO).
I really don't think the NTFS filesystem is the problem. Before posting, I had an internal drive with an NTFS partition and it works fine. Just in case, I installed some drivers for NTFS and they really made no difference. The guide offered by Ubuntu on ntfs-3g didn't make much difference and the ntfsprogs' ntfsmount gave the error:
jessica@jessica-laptop:~$ ntfsmount /dev/sda1 /media/sda1 -o fmask=0111,dmask=0
The device /dev/sda1 doesn't exist
So I'm pretty confident even as a FAT32 I would be having this trouble. I just have no clue why. Should I go back to Ubuntu 5? I really don't know why the new version would do this, though.
Later I will look into KwickDisk or some equivalent. In fact I'm going to see what other mounting or diagnostic tools I can find that might at least offer some explanation. Thanks for the help so far.
I tried with it both in FSTAB and not in it. I took it out because one guide I read said that FSTAB is used for static hard drives, and mine is external and not always going to be plugged in. So in my case I would want to use a nautilus macro to mount it (for ntfs-3g support). In my case the mount fails that way, too. Let me add it in, try it, and cat it for you.
Also, take note that my first post I did a sudo mount -a... It wouldn't complain about sda1 unless it was in fstab. Let me know if there is something wrong with the way I entered it.
[Edit:] Just as a note, the last line for the /dev/sda1 was added by me during my attempt to fix the problem. So I manually entered that in. /dev/sda1 does NOT exist, but /dev/sda does. The error during mount that says sda1 does not exist is correct, but other applications seem to realize that I do have the 160GB drive connected (as shown above).
Are you sure you're using sudo mount /dev/sda1, not just sudo mount /dev/sda?
On your fdisk -l you used /dev/sda, not /dev/sda1. That's why I ask.
Yeah definitely... I was using sudo mount -a... Which yeilds same result as sudo mount /dev/sda1
Anyway, as long as /dev/sda1 does not exist, it can't be mounted, which I realize now is my problem. In order to mount the drive at all it must exist in /dev/. At that point I have a macro for nautilus to mount the drive using ntfs-3g... but I can't get to that point.
FSTAB is really going to do the same thing as the macro, except for static drives. But really, either way... It's not working. I also checked up on my Ubuntu preferences and all of the options are set to automatically mount and read from the drive (which worked in the old version of Ubuntu).
I am at least learning a lot from this experience... Much more than if I gave up and reinstalled 5 (which I might still do). I'm going to keep studying this document you linked me to, but it seems drastically different than Ubuntu.
Gentoo is a dramatically different experience from Ubuntu. Gentoo is closer to build-your-own distro than most other distros. For that I enjoy it greatly.
Just another idea...
I know that mount loves to complain at me if /mnt/sda1 does not exist. I'd check to see if that exists, since I've gotten several errors complaining that the mount point does not exist - all of which are fixed by a simple
lsauron@the-dark-tower $ sudo mkdir /mnt/sda1
I know this isn't helping all that much, but I'm learning as I go as well. I really hope you find a solution!
mount checks for the mount directory to exist before it even checks if the device exists, so no... Or else it would give me that error.
And just FYI, I'm certain it does exist, anyway.
But anyway, I'd say if I don't figure this out by the end of the week or so I'll just to a clean install of the previous Ubuntu version. I'm really not that sad about it, really... I at least know for sure that'd fix my problem.