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Occasional Contributor
wahsy
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎09-10-2010
0

Running My Passport Essential on Linux (Ubuntu)

Hi,

My WD external hard drive won't mount on Linux (Ubuntu), the operating system I use. The error message advises me to boot into Windows to attempt to rectify the problem. Unfortunately I am unable to do this because the bootmgr is missing. Please can you advise me how I might start my external drive within Linux?

With thanks

Chris

Staff
Nathan_H
Posts: 128
Registered: ‎08-23-2010

Re: Running My Passport Essential on Linux (Ubuntu)

[ Edited ]

The NTFS driver for Linux is complaining because the NTFS file system wasn't unmounted cleanly, and the only safe way to repair any problems that might have arose is to use Microsoft's tools to do so.  You can borrow a friend's computer and run the disk error checker to fix the problem too.

 

If you can't do that, then you can force the drive to mount by typing the following.  Make sure to replace the "X" in "sdX1" with the appropriate device name.  In Ubuntu 10.04 LTS and Ubuntu 10.10, you can find the device name by going to System > Administration > Disk Utility, clicking on your external drive, and noting the name under "Device".

 

 

sudo mount -t ntfs-3g /dev/sdX1 /mnt/ -o force

 

You can get to the data then by going to Places > Computer, then double-clicking on "File System" and then "mnt".

 

While this will let you read and write to the drive, I would recommend copying your files off of the drive, and then reformatting it.  This will write a clean file system to the drive.  You can use Disk Utility for that as well.

 

Let me know if that helped!

 

Occasional Contributor
wahsy
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎09-10-2010
0

Re: Running My Passport Essential on Linux (Ubuntu)

Hi Nathan_H,

I've just come across your reply to my question. Since posting it I have sought help from a local computer shop who has run the disc error checker for me. He reported that the disk is healthy and my data safe inside.But the same error message comes up when I attempt to connect the drive so maybe appropriate repairs were not made using Microsoft's tools.

 

I've just now attempted your second suggestion to try to force mount it. I found the device name in Disk Utility. Under Drive>Device, the code is /dev/sdb and under Volume>Device, the code is /dev/sdb1. I tried typing the former in place of the 'X' but without success. The output reported 'failed to access volume, no such file or directory.

 

Please could you tell me exactly what I should type in the terminal? (I am a complete beginner).

 

The other point to make is that I am running Ubuntu Netbook Edition which does not have a Places menu but instead a categories list of icons. So I am unsure where to find Computer>File System after I have done the typing in the terminal.

 

I very much appreciate your help

Chris

 

Staff
Nathan_H
Posts: 128
Registered: ‎08-23-2010
0

Re: Running My Passport Essential on Linux (Ubuntu)

Chris,

 

Thanks for the information.  Windows needs to boot twice on the drive--it's caught me by surprise too since my laptop dual-boots Windows XP although I never use it.  Based on the information you gave me, you'll need to run the following:

 

sudo mount -t ntfs-3g /dev/sdb1 /mnt/ -o force

This will make the drive's contents available at "/mnt".  I installed Ubuntu 10.04.1 LTS Netbook Edition to check out the interface there.  Once you open any of the folders under Files, you can click "File System" on the left sidebar and then go to the "mnt" directory, or press Ctrl-L (L is for 'location') and type in "/mnt" and press Enter.

 

If that doesn't work, copy the line you entered plus any messages from Terminal and paste them in here.  Use the "code" option in the editor, that looks like a clipboard with a C on it.

 

Good luck!
Nathan

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