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Old 05-23-2005, 10:36 AM   #1
Registered: Nov 2003
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Accessing a local windows 2000/xp filesystem from linux and vice versa

Hi there --

I am installing Fedora Core 2 and then plan on installing Windows 2000 or XP on a single harddrive. The system will then be configured with Partition Magic to enable dual-boot capability.

I would like to be able to access files on the Windows partition from Linux and be able to the same for Linux from Windows.

My thinking was to install the Samba server and client on the workstation. I am not sure what the correct configuration would be if I went this route. Can someone enlighten me on this?

Also, if there is a better way to accomplish the the above, please let me know. Thanks.
Old 05-23-2005, 11:23 AM   #2
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(1) your question is very little FC2-specific, so it would probably be better off in general
(2) I assume you have your own reasons for picking FC2 over FC3
(3) it's not perfectly clear from your post what you want, but my best guess is this:

You have a single machine. You want to be able to run both FC2 and msdos on it, though only one at a time. You want each OS to take advantage of the filesystems they provide, but only to such an extent that when running one, you can have full rw access to the files of the other.

if any of these assumptions are incorrect, please tell us which.

if they are correct, then samba is not the solution: (afaik) sambda is for communicating with linux and windows running at the same time (most likely on seperate boxen).

the obvious solution would be to find out which file systems are supported under both OSes and pick the ones `most native' to each OS for that OS.

read-only(*) ntfs
read-write: fat
read-write: ext2 ext3 reiserFS (and a gazillion more, but these three are by far the most common)

read-?: reiser fs (I think)
read-write (i think): ext2
read-write (more `native'): ntfs, fat
iirc, windows won't install on anything except ntfs and fat (and afai'm told, fat is crap).

(*) technically speaking, the ntfs driver *can* write, but only on top of existing files, and it can't change the size (last time I checked).

so far, my experience with reiserFS is that it is blindingly fast for small files (i.e. most files) and fine for large files too.

my best guess for a solution:
ext2 for linux, fat for windows--but I urge you to check into matters yourself. ext2 is getting dated (though not bad), and fat... well, see above.

hth --Jonas
Old 05-23-2005, 12:29 PM   #3
Registered: Nov 2003
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Thanks for your reply. I was doing some additional planning and I believe this is what I'll do:

Create an additional partition, after the initial Windows install, that is formatted with the FAT32 filesystem.
Modify the fstab file in Linux to mount the partition on boot.

My only question is what would the correct syntax be within the fstab file?
Old 05-23-2005, 12:48 PM   #4
Registered: Nov 2004
Location: Canada
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Here is my advice

To have full read/write access in both directions do the following:
- Install XP in a fat32 partition (if you install it in a NTFS it will be read only)
- Install linux in another fat32 partition

XP will automatically recognize the linux partition as drive D:

For linux to mount the XP partition at boot time do the following

Create a mount point folder

mkdir /media/windows
mkdir /mnt/windows
Then try with the following command:
mount /dev/hda1 /media/windows/
If you can access your partition the next step will mount it whenever you boot your computer

Open '/etc/fstab' in an editor and add these lines to the END of the file:

/dev/hda1 /media/windows auto defaults,users 0 0

If you decide to install windows in a NTFS partition, you can follow the instructions here
Old 05-23-2005, 03:43 PM   #5
Registered: Apr 2004
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I doubt you can install Linux onto a FAT32 partition, since it doesn't support permissions and executable bits.
Old 05-23-2005, 09:55 PM   #6
Registered: Nov 2004
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He can

He can install on a FAT32. I did not say it is advisable.

I personally prefer to have WindowsXP in NTFS, linux in ext3 and have a shared FAT32 partition where both can read and write.
Old 05-24-2005, 08:46 AM   #7
Registered: Apr 2004
Location: Germany
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You can install it but nothing will run since permissions, executable bits and symlinks aren't supported and I doubt anything will run without these features


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