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Old 08-22-2018, 04:59 PM   #1
weephatz
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Dual boot Ubuntu/Kali to share a storage drive?


Hi,

I'm new to this forum and relatively new to Linux too, so apologies if this post is in the wrong place and hello

I've just ordered an Entroware laptop which is coming preinstalled with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.

The laptop has 2 drives, a 500g storage drive and a smaller primary drive for the OS.

I am planning on dual booting this with Kali, splitting the primary drive 50/50.

I'm wondering is it possible to share the storage drive between the 2 distros, so that files created on Ubuntu can be accessed by Kali and vice versa? Is this something that will happen naturally? Do the 2 distros use the same FS type? Can I put the /home for each distro in the same storage drive? Should I be partitioning the storage between the distros?

I appreciate that this is maybe a lengthy topic, I'm not looking to be spoonfed on this, but I'm having trouble finding help via search engines. So if anyone could even point me in the direction of a guide I'd be grateful.

Thanks in advance for any help.
 
Old 08-22-2018, 05:24 PM   #2
weephatz
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Update re: shared home

From what I have just read, a single shared /home can be problematic.
With that in mind, I would be happy with a separate home for each distro, each on the storage drive.
So I think that reduces my question to.. is that possible? Will they be able to read/write from the other distros /home?
 
Old 08-22-2018, 05:47 PM   #3
flshope
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I have implemented dual booting with file sharing exactly once. So I am not an expert. I followed the instructions at

https://www.garron.me/en/linux/dual-...s-distros.html

to implement file sharing, and they worked as expected. However, it is important to read and understand what he is telling you and modify the commands for your situation.

One bit of hard-earned advice: At some point in implementing file sharing, you will need to run chown and chmod on all the files that are to be shared. If the shared files happen to contain links to the boot drives, chown and chmod (if run recursively) may follow the links and screw up the permissions set up for the operating system files. I made this mistake and one of my OSs became unbootable and the other was marginally bootable. Read the man pages for chown and chmod. If you run them recursively, that is,

Code:
chown -R --preserve-root ...
chmod -R --preserve-root ...
be sure to use the "--preserve-root" option. [N.b.: the commands above are incomplete -- you will need to figure out the complete command for your situation.]

As you create new files in the directories that are shared, you will need to run chown and chmod to make the new files sharable. If you don't do this for each new file, you will need to run them recursively now and then -- and this is where you can mess up your machine.
 
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Old 08-22-2018, 06:11 PM   #4
weephatz
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Thanks

I'll give this guide a go when I get the laptop.
The files I want to share between distros would be pdfs, text documents and python scripts. I'm too new to Linux to be scripting anything touching a boot drive or the underlying OS in general, except basic file creation/manipulation in /home, so hopefully that won't be problematic. I will study the man pages first though.
 
Old 08-22-2018, 06:39 PM   #5
frankbell
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I second what weephatz said about a shared /home; there's too much of a chance of conflicts among the dot-configuration files in ~/.

There is nothing, though, to prevent whichever OS is running from accessing partitions on the second drive for file storage and retrieval. I do it all the time with external USB drives.
 
Old 08-22-2018, 06:42 PM   #6
syg00
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I'm an advocate of not sharing /home - and I have more than one Linux on every machine I own.
I'm all in favour of having a /data drive that multiple systems can safely share.

Hmmm ... new user ... kali ...
Generally a bad combination - you will likely not get much sympathy when (not if) you screw something up. We all screw things up, that just happens, but kali is not a distro for new users and most of us don't use it as a day-to-day system.
 
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Old 08-22-2018, 06:49 PM   #7
Ztcoracat
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Hi & Welcome to LQ-

When you go to install Kali along side of Ubuntu Kali will most likely take over the boot first.
So, when you are creating the partitions for Kali check to see if Ubuntu already has the boot flag.
IF you can't boot into Ubuntu after Kali is installed all you would need to do is update grub.
Code:
sudo update-grub
Make sure the right drive is selected. Most installers default to /dev/sda/. Your second storage drive would be /dev/sdb/.

Kali Linux is based on Debian and Ubuntu is based on Debian so yes, the two use the same fs type.

Yes you can share the storage drive with both distributions. However, if you are going to put the /home directory on the storage drive and not the drive that the os will be installed to that may be an issue. -::-I've never tried it.-::-
*SEE the link below.*

When you are booted into Kali you will be able to see and mnt the Ubuntu partition and vice versa.

Note that it is "not a good idea to share all of the HOME partition with different distributions or releases" as this may lead to conflicting configuration settings from differing application versions.

https://askubuntu.com/questions/2830...rate-partition
 
Old 08-22-2018, 07:22 PM   #8
Ztcoracat
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I completely agree with sygOO-

If you do not have digital forensics training and penetration testing experience; Kali Linux could very well be difficult to operate for you if you don't know what you are doing.

-::-Running another os while you are studying the Penetration Testing Manual would be a better choice.-::-

https://www.google.com/search?client....0.LdI3VAaqYtw

Kali Linux Revealed:

https://www.google.com/search?client....0.bYuD6CUha1M
 
Old 08-22-2018, 07:25 PM   #9
weephatz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syg00 View Post
I'm an advocate of not sharing /home - and I have more than one Linux on every machine I own.
I'm all in favour of having a /data drive that multiple systems can safely share.

Hmmm ... new user ... kali ...
Generally a bad combination - you will likely not get much sympathy when (not if) you screw something up. We all screw things up, that just happens, but kali is not a distro for new users and most of us don't use it as a day-to-day system.
Thanks syg00. After I posted the question, I found another thread that suggested a communal /data drive with symlinks to the respective /home partitions.
To be honest, I'm not really sure what that entails and how the end result would function, but that is something I can read up on.

In terms of new user and Kali, I appreciate the warning. I've heard about the Kali support approach, it's one of the reasons I came here when I couldn't find help on Google, rather than Kali's forum
I'm a network engineer by trade, my employer wants me to upskill on security, hence the Kali partition. It certainly won't be my daily distro, that is where the Ubuntu comes in. So I'm used to Linux jumpboxes in terms of navigation, file permissions/management etc, but the underlying OS structure and partitioning is something that has always alluded me. That's something I hope to rectify with this new laptop.
 
Old 08-22-2018, 07:38 PM   #10
syg00
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There is no need for linking. I prefer to keep things distinct - you can only work on the data from one system at a time, so create the shared partition and simply mount that on the system in use - that can be added to /etc/fstab to get it mounted at boot.
Linux has a help system called man - so (from a terminal) man fstab will give you the doco. Use q (for quit) to get out of man. Now you're on your way ... good luck
 
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