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Thread: Can't write to external hard drive? please help

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    4

    Question Can't write to external hard drive? please help

    So I have an external hard drive (500gb WD passport) I use to move stuff between my computers (2 running windows, 1 ubuntu laptop) and since I hooked it up to ubuntu to listen to music I can't write anything to it, on neither ubuntu or windows. I believe it has something to do with ubuntu's security permissions. I need it to be able to read and write under both ubuntu and windows and go back and forth.
    any help is appreciated
    thanks in advance
    jonny

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    18

    Re: Can't write to external hard drive? please help

    i need help with this also
    i have a my passport 320gb

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    83

    Re: Can't write to external hard drive? please help

    By default, an external usb disk is going to be available in /media and will only allow root to write to it. The quick way to allow access is to create a subdirectory and then give yourself ownership of the directory and you should be good to go.

    So, I have an external drive I use for backups at /media/ext1tb. The ownership is root:root and permissions are rwxr-xr-x or 755. So, as my normal user, I can read, but not write. I then created a subdirectory called backup and gave myself ownership.
    Code:
    sudo mkdir /media/ext1tb/backup
    sudo chown username:groupname /media/ext1tb/backup
    At this time, I'm not aware of how to change the ownership rules to allow me to own the actual device, but this should get you going.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Wink Re: Can't write to external hard drive? please help

    1 - Go to Terminal, copy & paste this command: gksudo nautilus that will open Terminal as root

    2 - Navigate to your folder/file/drive, Right Click, select the Permissions tab

    3 - Change the Owner drop-down menu to your name, then change Folder Access to Create & Delete Files, then File Access to Read & Write, then Group to your name, Folder Access to Create & Delete Files, File Access to Read & Write then click Apply Permissions To Enclosed Files.

    You will now have full access to your folder/file/drive.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    5,767
    Distro
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: Can't write to external hard drive? please help

    Quote Originally Posted by scouser73 View Post
    1 - Go to Terminal, copy & paste this command: gksudo nautilus that will open Terminal as root

    2 - Navigate to your folder/file/drive, Right Click, select the Permissions tab

    3 - Change the Owner drop-down menu to your name, then change Folder Access to Create & Delete Files, then File Access to Read & Write, then Group to your name, Folder Access to Create & Delete Files, File Access to Read & Write then click Apply Permissions To Enclosed Files.

    You will now have full access to your folder/file/drive.
    This wont work. NTFS drives don't understand Linux permissions, the entire drive is granted the permissions you specifiy either in fstab or with the mount command.
    Cheesemill

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