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Old 04-15-2002, 09:26 AM   #1
Registered: Apr 2002
Distribution: SuSe/Redhat
Posts: 94

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Compiling RH kernel for NTFS support

Having switched my home desktop distribution from SuSe to Red hat, I've noticed that I can no longer mount my data drives which are formatted NTFS for win2k.

I have gathered that I need to recompile the kernel, but am not having much luck finding out what is entailed in doing this or what I need to add to enable me to get this functionality enabled.
Old 04-15-2002, 12:31 PM   #2
Registered: Apr 2001
Location: chicago, IL
Distribution: debian, redhat
Posts: 280

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compiling kernels is very easy, i am surprised the is no ntfs module, but comoiling a kernel is something one should not miss!
check out:

also a small how to is -> here

when you do a make xconfig look for the filesystems box and select NTFS - note in order to do this you will need to have 'expermental/incomplete ' options enabled also.

Last edited by pbharris; 04-15-2002 at 12:36 PM.
Old 04-16-2002, 06:58 AM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Apr 2002
Location: London
Distribution: SuSE
Posts: 2

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It's not as difficult as most people think it is.

You start with a good look at the URL indicated in the other post (if you want my advice, print it out and spend a lot of time studying it);
then you go to

and download the latest kernel - or whatever kernel you think you need. I've been using 2.4.18 for some time and it works quite fine.

Traditionally, the sources are kept in /usr/src, so save it there. Be aware that it will untar in a subdirectory called linux. You might already have one there , or a symlink, so make sure you move it before uncompressing.
The usual practice seems to be to move the uncompressed directory to something like linux-2.4.xx and then symlink it to "linux" - this way you can have as many source trees as you want and always point the symlink to the latest - or the one you currently use.

You'll need to collect some information about your system before actually recompiling the kernel. Basically, the output of lspci and lsmod should be enough, plus the knowledge of what filesystems you use, and stuff like that.
At that point just cd to linux and execute make menuconfig (do this as root, makes your life easier).

What else? Ah, yes, make it as modular as you can - but remember that a few things must be compiled-in: support for whatever filesystem you have in / and for whatever controller you use for your boot disk; and for ELF executables, at the very least.
Old 04-17-2002, 09:44 PM   #4
Registered: Jan 2002
Location: Stevens Point, WI
Distribution: Mandrake 10.0 (P4 2.8 w/ HT, Radeon 9700 Pro, 80 GB/120GB HDDs)
Posts: 242

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Ok, I have a really stupid (at least the people who know the answer will think this) question. What is the difference between FAT and NTFS? And what is the difference between NTFS and EXT2 or even EXT3? I know that FAT is Win9x and NTFS is Win2k and XP, and obviously EXT2/EXT3 is linux native.... but what's the real difference??
Old 04-18-2002, 02:23 AM   #5
Registered: Apr 2002
Location: The District
Distribution: FreeBSD, OBSD maybe Gentoo and Winblech XP
Posts: 291

Rep: Reputation: 30
NTFS= NT File System


Lately I'm interested in the reiser fs

Red Hat does have read only support for NTFS
Compile the kernel as such
cd /usr/src/linux
make xconfig # goto filesystems check the read only NTFS #module or built in your choice
make clean && make dep && make bzImage && make modules
# yawn
# {have cuppa cuppa}

cp ./arch/i386/boot/bzImage /boot//vmlinuz-yourkernname
cp /boot/
make modules_install
mkinitrd /boot/initrd-yourkernname # I am having trouble w/this
# command on my RH 7.2 box. Returns: All your
# loopback devices are busy!! If anyone knows why
#please tell me

boot to kernel test then recofigure grub if it is suitable
Old 04-19-2002, 04:15 AM   #6
Registered: Apr 2002
Distribution: SuSe/Redhat
Posts: 94

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
Thanks for the info guys, much appreciated, apols for taking so long to reply, been exiled away from net access for a few days.

I will give this a shot over the weekend, do feel like I havent cut my teeth properly on linux yet without having taken this step
Old 04-19-2002, 05:07 AM   #7
Registered: Dec 2001
Location: Kent in UK
Distribution: Fedora 2
Posts: 170

Rep: Reputation: 30
Here is the script I use to compile kernels.
If your kernel is in /usr/src/linux
will put the net kernel in /boot/vmlinuz
rebuild_kernel fred
would also put it in /boot but name it fred
Hope this is of use. I always find nothing is more helpful
than an example

# recompiles the kernel
if [ -n "$1" ]
echo target set to $target
sleep 2
cd /usr/include
rm -rf linux
rm -rf asm
ln -s /usr/src/linux/include/linux linux
ln -s /usr/src/linux/include/asm-i386 asm
ln -s /usr/src/linux/include/scsi scsi
cd /usr/src/linux
make dep
if [ -z "$2" ]; then
make clean
echo "no make clean today"
sleep 2
make bzImage
cp /usr/src/linux/arch/i386/boot/bzImage $target
make modules
make modules_install
depmod -a


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