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Old 12-13-2003, 05:06 PM   #1
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How well is FAT32 handled?

Hey I'm seriously considering switching over to linux and I heard that it will support FAT32 partition which is good because I would be dual booting with XP (got to have my games). My question does Linux handle read and write from FAT32 flawlessly.
Currently I have my 40gig hard drive as ntfs for xp and my 30gig with Mandrake 9.2 on it but thats just not working out so well as I want to have the same Mozilla inboxes and passwords in Windows and Linux and I want be able to access my music, movies, and picture in both. Currently XP doesn't even recognize my linux drive in My Computer (it there in system device though) and Linux can just read (and not too well) from my XP drive.
I was thinking setting my 30gig up as primary and partitioning it in two, one ntsf, the other Linux (ext3 and swap) and then having my 40gig as secondary in FAT32 and just using it as a data dump for the two OS's. Would this work out well?
Old 12-13-2003, 05:28 PM   #2
Registered: Mar 2003
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That should be fine. fat32 support is fine in linux. Althought it does have the same limitations as in windows - ie no advanced permissions etc.
Old 12-13-2003, 05:46 PM   #3
Registered: Jul 2003
Distribution: Gentoo
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FAT32 is supported so well that you could call it flawless. I never heard of anyone who had problems with it. NTFS is another matter though.

You may need to set a umask in your fstab file which will set the FAT32 partition's default user, group and permission settings. It does not actually support permissions but linux will give any file and directory default permissions. You may need to alter them to be access them as a normal user (ie non-root).

As for shared information, I just configured mozilla to use the mail directory on my windows partition. This way I have access to all my email, no matter if I'm running linux or windows. You can also use the same partly downloaded files for edonkey/emule and xmule under linux. Works perfectly for me. This definately makes switching to linux easier.

And one more thing... you will probably never see your linux partition(s) in the windows explorer. Windows by itself is unable to read those. There have been drivers and/or programs that made it possible to access your linux partitions under windows but I'm not sure if any of those work on windows xp.

Good luck!
Old 12-13-2003, 06:38 PM   #4
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thanks for the good advice guys


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