Sunday, December 23, 2007

Mounting NTFS partitions with read-write access - My experience

Mounting a windows NTFS partition as read/write could be done through couple of utilities such as ntfsprogs or Ntfs-3g. I could not find Ntfs-3g debian binaries for my Ubuntu Dapper Drake. Its not there in the existing repositories as well. I had ntfsprogs listed in my repositories. So I went about trying to mount my windows ntfs partition as read/write using ntfsprogs.

I found this wiki - Unofficial Starter's Guide to Ubuntu Dapper Drake - very useful for configuring fstab such that the windows ntfs partitions are mounted automatically during bootup. Now would you want your primary partition to be mounted with read/write access all times. I may not want that. NTFS partitions are anyways are mounted automatically as read-only by Dapper Drake. Unless you have a reason to modify some file in the NTFS partition, you may not want to mount it as a read-write partition. I had reason to mount my primary windows partition with read-write access. I had to modify the boot.ini file for windows to boot properly.

Even after modifying my fstab as given in the starter's guide and rebooting the machine, it still did not mount the intended NTFS partition. So I tried, mounting it manually using ntfsmount. I found this page on ntfsmount useful.

Here is what I got when I tried mounting manually.
Couldn't mount device '/dev/sda1': Operation not supported
Windows did not shut down properly. Try to mount volume in windows, shut down and try again.
Mount failed.
Wow!!! How did ntfsmount every figure out that my Windows was not shut down properly.

But I don't know how to process further. The only way I can recover my windows without re-installing is to modify the boot.ini file.

I need to figure out how to work around this problem.

Feeling tired and bored. I am going to try and solve this problem over this week.

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