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Old 03-16-2006, 04:11 PM   #1
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How to access an EXT3 HDD from the Windows

Hi, I'm a novice LINUX user.

In my desktop computer, I installed both the LINUX and the Windows, and the HDD containing LINUX is formatted as the EXT3 format.

Of course, when I booted in the Windows mode, this LINUX HDD is not recognized. But are there any methods that I can use to access this HDD in the Windows mode? I would like to edit some data files stored in this HDD.

Thanks a lot!
Old 03-16-2006, 04:13 PM   #2
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I believe there are some third party add on programs that can read ext3 from windows. But this is generally not advised as windows can really bork your system.

Generally the method is to create a shared FAT32 partition that can be read by both linux and windows.
Old 03-16-2006, 04:21 PM   #3
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there is a driver you can install in windows that allows you to see the ext3 i've used it and haven't had problems with it. i know reiserfs is only readable as NTFS is only readable from linux. as stated before the easiest is to have a shared partition that is fat32.

the driver i use is found here
Old 03-16-2006, 04:46 PM   #4
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There is a tool which behaves much like Windows explorer, call explore2fs. Available from

They don't recommend using it to write to linux partitions, however I've used it heavily that way without a hitch.

--- rod.
Old 03-16-2006, 04:47 PM   #5
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For regular file transfers a fat32 transfer partition is more practical, as has already been pointed out.

If you occasionally need to get a file from an ext2 or ext3 partition while you're using Windows and don't want to re-boot to Linux just to copy it to the fat32 partition, you can use Explore2fs from It will give you read-only access to your Linux partitions.
Old 03-27-2006, 09:19 AM   #6
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I can now read the EXT3 partition, Thanks very much for your helps!


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