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JuliaHenson 07-16-2009 03:54 PM

Which file sys structure is best re formatting an external USB flash drive
Dear Sirs,
I have a Pentium 4 CPU, 2.40 Ghz, 2 GB RAM, 250GB and 40GB hard drives. I have a dual-boot system, using WinXP & Linux.
I use Ubuntu Intrepid ibex, Version 8.10 Oct 2008.
I have not updated to 9.04 because the info I read talks about some difficulties and the young man who had loaded Linux for me, said that he would be here to upgrade me, which told me that it required a pro. However, he never showed.
I have the book "The Official Ubuntu Book, 3rd Edition", but there is no discussion about the "file system structure".
My searches were "FAT 32", "file system structure", "formatting", "format HD".
I did find a listing by Larry Webb on 8/19/08 at 10:54 a.m. in "uncategorized", that indicated that his Linux was passing information to a Windows system.

Linux cannot serve my needs, so I need to update WinXP, which led to the suggestion that I backup my data, which led me to the decision (somewhat 'round about) to buy a Transcend 25M USB external flash drive for the data.
Reading the material for the flash drive led me to question the file system structures. Right now, I know that Linux uses a default of ext3. My system is NTFS and the flash drive is FAT 32.

I have the opportunity (I presume) of formatting the disk to the optimum file structure before I use it. Should I? Or does Linux ext3 work with either one seamlessly and it is of no concern?
I will probably re-format the 2nd USB flash drive with NTFS for the WinXP data, just in case that information is pertinent.

I have not formatted anything since my car accident, so I have no idea if I can even follow what to do. I also can't find out what HDs were used. I tried using "hwinfo --partition", but the message said it was not installed. The GNOME Commander tells me that the Linux area has 13.6 GB available and that WinXP data has 133GB available. I think that he partitioned the 250GB drive and both systems are on one disk, just in case this info is needed. I was unsuccessful in getting this info from either Linux or Windows Explorer.

If possible, can you tell me whether I should re-format the USB external flash drive to be used with Linux data and if so, which file system structure would be best - or if I should just leave everything as is and proceed to copy my data?

I'm sorry this is so long - I generally try to keep a posting fairly small - but I couldn't figure out how to describe my question without the detail.

Thank you very much,

linus72 07-16-2009 04:03 PM

Hello again
I believe there are now drivers available for windows to communcate with Linux filesystems, mostly ext2 I believe(I could be wrong)

Best option if you wanna move files between Linux and windows, is either just a fat32 usb
or a 2 partition usb with 1st partition fat32, bootable, with syslinux installed
2nd partition would be either ext2, or ext3
ext3 is much better than fat32 for data purposes, but harder to recover data too I believe

ext3 is a journaling filesystem, better to protect against data corruption than either ext2 or fat32

Not sure, but never saw a NTFS formatted usb?

Also, I just installed Ultimate-Edition-2.2 which is based on ubuntu-9.04
and I have not had any problems

But, I have heard trying to upgrade from 8.10 sometimes leaves pkg's not working

So, if you want 9.04 you should re-install(easy)
and you just install to same partition as 8.10, thus deleting it
so backup 8.10 files before installing
and we'll help

JuliaHenson 07-16-2009 04:50 PM

cont: file sys structure
Hi again!
re: "there are now drivers available for windows to communicate with Linux..." Well, the GNOME Commander allows me to easily transfer files between the WinXP data area and the Linux data area, so maybe Luis installed something.

re: "Best option if you wanna move files... is either a FAT32 USB or..." Well, if that is the case, then I'll just leave the USB as it is for both WinXP and Linux, since I know nothing about any of this!

Regarding installing the 9.04: I can't seem to get the information I need to know where Linux is! When I go into WinXP, Explorer lists the Drives issued, but I see nothing of the Linux programs or the data. I can see the Linux data only when in Linux and I get no info on which HD it's on.
So, anyway, I should be able to backup the data to the flash drive while in Linux, then do the upgrade. Maybe I better wait for that until I get Windows up and running - I don't want to lose the ability to access the Linux files I have until I can operate successfully again with Windows. That means starting from scratch, almost - he didn't install even the SP2 disk for XP, let alone any programs.

I purchased 2 of the USB 320GB flash drives. I plan to use one for the Linux data, as I continue to be able to use it through the years. (But I sure wish I could find out if the 40GB HD is being used). Then I will use the other flash drive for the Windows data.

I believe that Linux 'mounted' the flash drive correctly already and that it is, therefore, available for immediate use. I'll find that out as soon as I try to copy the data, won't I?


JuliaHenson 10-16-2009 03:52 PM

file systems between Linux and Windows
Dear Sirs,
Since Luis has changed my entire system, my requirements are different and...
My Transcend drives using FAT 32 were used successfully for backing up both the Linux ext3 files and the Windows NTFS files.

I have forgotten how to close a thread.
Thank you very much,

JuliaHenson 10-16-2009 04:08 PM

Mark as solved
Dear Sirs,
I consider this thread closed for me, as my the FAT32 Transcend drives gave me no difficulty in receiving and my having access to both the Windows XP, NTFS files and the ext3 Linux files.

Thank you,
Julia Henson

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