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Is it possible to format my hard drive so that it is accessible without actually deleting the files from it? The hard drive is using the NTFS filesystem. I'm using ...
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  1. #1
    ZmQ
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    Accessing Hard Drives


    Is it possible to format my hard drive so that it is accessible without actually deleting the files from it?

    The hard drive is using the NTFS filesystem.

    I'm using Ubuntu.

    I know I should've thought of this before I installed.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru anomie's Avatar
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    Probably not. Formatting a partition (i.e. creating a filesystem on it) necessarily means overwriting what is there.

    You can back the files up and restore them after creating the new filesystem, or you can try to shrink the partition NTFS if you want to go that way (which will mean another partition with the filesystem you want).

    You know you already can read NTFS from ubuntu, yes?

  3. #3
    ZmQ
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    Oh really? How would I go about that :o

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    Linux Guru anomie's Avatar
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    I don't run ubuntu (so hopefully someone will correct me if I'm wrong), but for many distros NTFS-read support is already built into the kernel.

    You can find out which partition NTFS is on by using something like
    Code:
    fdisk -l
    Once you've identified it, simply make a mount point for it and mount it.

  6. #5
    Linux User stokes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZmQ
    Oh really? How would I go about that :o
    To do that you need to edit your /etc/fstab in Ubuntu and add a line that tells it your NTFS drive (or partition) exists, and how your system should access it.

    Something like this would do:
    Code:
    /dev/hda1  /mnt/ntfs  ntfs  ro  0 0
    ... where /dev/hda1 is your NTFS drive. You would then be able to see the contents of the drive by using Konquerer (or whatever) to browse the /mnt/ntfs directory.

    NTFS partitons from Linux is read only btw, which is what the "ro" means.

    Edit: anomie just beat me to it. Both of these will work though, the difference is editing fstab will make your ntfs drive appear automatically each time you boot your system.
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  7. #6
    ZmQ
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    Thanks for the help.

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