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Which Filesystem Do You Use On Portable Media For Linux Systems? 569

Posted by timothy
from the hell-is-other-people's-file-permissions dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Most people use MS filesystems on Disk-On-Keys, and portable hard drives, as these are readable from most machines. But this way you lose the files' permission information, which many times is very inconvenient (you must agree that having Ubuntu asking you whether to execute or display every text file or image you open from a DOK is annoying). Using 'regular' Linux filesystems like ext keeps the permissions, but may require using the superuser when switching machines (as the UIDs are different). So do any of you have a creative solution for this problem?"
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Which Filesystem Do You Use On Portable Media For Linux Systems?

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  • ext3 (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Dice (109560) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @05:51PM (#29383403)

    I don't use OSes other than Linux, so the choice is simple. If I did have to interact with Windows or OS X I'd probably use FAT32.

  • Well, now ... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ScrewMaster (602015) * on Thursday September 10, 2009 @05:51PM (#29383407)

    So do any of you have a creative solution for this problem?

    Isn't the whole point of this "problem" that there shouldn't be a solution to the problem?

  • I just use (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Darkness404 (1287218) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @05:53PM (#29383427)
    I just use FAT32 because the main point of my USB drive is to transfer data between computers and provide a backup of my most important documents. To be perfectly honest I don't know why anyone would need permissions on a USB drive. Most programs on Linux are easy enough that with your .whatever directory in your home folder simply just copy that to your drive and paste it on the new machine. With APT and such most software is easily accessible (making portable binaries like on Windows needless). So why would you even need it?
  • uid issue (Score:4, Insightful)

    by james_shoemaker (12459) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @05:56PM (#29383469)

    Ever think of just making the uid's on your various machines match?

    James

  • DOK (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 10, 2009 @05:59PM (#29383503)

    What? Who on earth calls it a Disk on Key?

  • Re:Well, now ... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by rale, the (659351) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @06:11PM (#29383645)
    How does requiring the UID to match prove any more secure than requiring a username match, for a portable drive?  If I have the drive in my hand, I can plug it into any computer I want and access it as root anyway.
  • by mrcaseyj (902945) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @06:13PM (#29383667)
    C3ntaur wrote:

    I invite anyone who claims CO2 is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.

    I invite anyone who claims pure water is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.

  • Re:Poratibility (Score:4, Insightful)

    by eapache (1239018) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @06:17PM (#29383719) Homepage
    The Linux NTFS drivers are working well now. That's what I use on my shared partition.
  • Re:ext3 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by bluelip (123578) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @06:21PM (#29383757) Homepage Journal

    Or possibly get a stick that supports U3 on it. Put the windows drivers for reiser on the CD portion of the drive and format the storage are as reiser. Self-contained, multi-platform, permission preserving solution.

    One such example of reiser drivers for windows.
    http://rfsd.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]

  • by _Sprocket_ (42527) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @06:38PM (#29383957)

    I invite anyone who claims pudding is a pollutant to sit in $240 of it [youtube.com] for 10 minutes. Aaawww yeah.

  • by harry666t (1062422) <harry666t@gmail. c o m> on Thursday September 10, 2009 @06:42PM (#29384001)

    sofar wrote:

    >mrcaseyj wrote:
    >>
    >>> C3ntaur wrote:
    >>> I invite anyone who claims CO2 is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.
    >>
    >> I invite anyone who claims pure water is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.
    >
    > I invite anyone who claims pure oxygen is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes

    I invite anyone who claims pure vacuum is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.

  • Re:ext3 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DigDuality (918867) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @06:50PM (#29384111)
    umm, the defaults (fat32 formatted keys) work just fine in every distro automatically. Gnome and KDE are great at giving a way to automount in their file managers. What's the problem?
  • What about UDF? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by xororand (860319) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @07:07PM (#29384253)

    UDF doesn't have a 2 GB file size limit like FAT32 and seems to be well supported [wikipedia.org] by most operating systems. I don't really have any experience with it but I just formatted my USB stick with UDF just to see how it goes.
    mkudffs --media-type=hd --vid=MyDiskLabel /dev/disk/by-id/usb-LEXAR_JUMPDRIVE_ELITE
    It works fine in Linux.

  • Re:Poratibility (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 10, 2009 @07:22PM (#29384385)

    So you never burn a DVD from an image? You never film or watch an HD movie? I think you're a bit out of touch with what "most users" need nowadays.

  • Re:DOK (Score:3, Insightful)

    by spazdor (902907) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @07:40PM (#29384555)

    um, RDOK?

  • by sznupi (719324) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @07:56PM (#29384679) Homepage

    At least few distros I've tried does that (and a) I wasn't bothered enough yet to search more thoroughly than quick google search b) it wouldn't help much anyway, since that's apparently a default behaviour...a big problem when using flashdisks with alien machines)

    Namely, when moving files across volumes, only the modification date remained intact, with creation date being "reset" to the time of moving (essentialy it worked the same as copying and then deleting the original; and while that's what the OS is doing under the hood, it is not the intention of the user if he chooses "cut" instead of "copy")

    That's a destruction of very, very basic file attribute; almost falls under the category of destroying user data... (yes, file creation dates are not important to some of you, I get it...but they are to others)

  • Re:Poratibility (Score:2, Insightful)

    by jedidiah (1196) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @07:57PM (#29384685) Homepage

    If you think that "most users" do that sort of thing then it is YOU that is woefully out of touch with what users need today.

  • Re:Well, now ... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by node 3 (115640) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @08:19PM (#29384845)

    File permissions security isn't all that useful on removable media like it is on the boot drive (and other internal drives).

    If a drive is portable, you can bypass any security permissions by simply plugging it into a computer where you are root, or compiling your own kernel or filesystem driver to ignore permissions.

    The default behavior for external drives (esp. flash drives) should be to completely ignore ownership permissions, with the option to enforce them if you really want to. Anything more strict and you make things harder for you, but no harder for someone with their own box.

  • Re:ext3 (Score:4, Insightful)

    by raddan (519638) * on Thursday September 10, 2009 @08:48PM (#29384899)

    Threads like this remind me of why Linux will never make it as a mainstream OS.

    I converted two people in my office to Ubuntu recently. One is an accountant. The other is an attorney. Both of them were shocked at how reliable and low-maintenance Ubuntu was. Both of them wanted to know why no one else knows about this. The only thing they needed help with was installing the proprietary media codecs (and I should point out all I did was send them links). They installed Ubuntu themselves, and they regularly tell me how happy they are with their computers now.

    How many people have you converted to Linux recently?

  • Re:ext3 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by selven (1556643) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @09:18PM (#29385041)
    Now this is something I don't understand. How do these jokes cause any harm to Reiser's wife's children or family? Every time someone makes a joke about something that, for some reason, "shouldn't be taken lightly", there are people expressing their outrage about how it was wrong to make it. Everything is offensive to someone, we should all realize that being offended doesn't harm you in any way and you can just skip over to the next comment and let people who want to laugh about something do so.
  • Re:ext3 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mrchaotica (681592) * on Thursday September 10, 2009 @09:22PM (#29385055)

    This thread is not evidence of Linux being deficient compared to Windows; portable media doesn't usually have intact and correct permissions on Windows systems either! The difference here is that Linux users are pickier about the issue while Windows users, on average, don't care (if they even know about and understand the problem to begin with).

  • by xiando (770382) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @09:26PM (#29385095) Homepage Journal
    From the question,

    Using 'regular' Linux filesystems like ext keeps the permissions, but may require using the superuser when switching machines (as the UIDs are different).

    It sounds to me that the Question is not what filesystem to (ab)use, but how to make the files on the USB technology appear to belong to the same (ab)user on both/all boxen. Simply give yourself the same UID on both/all boxen and you are done.
    usermod -u 1000 youruser
    chown -R youruser:users /home/youruser

    man usermod and man chown for additional information.

  • Re:ext3 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Omnifarious (11933) * <eric-slashNO@SPAMomnifarious.org> on Thursday September 10, 2009 @10:57PM (#29385627) Homepage Journal

    It bothers me because it hurts innocent code. The code didn't do anything wrong. The software he wrote didn't murder anybody. But now the only thing anybody ever talks about when they talk about the code is murder. The code deserves better than that.

    That sounds like a joke, and it sort of is, but it also really isn't.

  • Re:uid issue (Score:3, Insightful)

    by dbIII (701233) on Thursday September 10, 2009 @11:03PM (#29385669)
    Permissions are irrelevant any when you can assume that whoever picks the thing up by accident or theft has root or Admin on their machine.
  • Re:ext3 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by X0563511 (793323) on Friday September 11, 2009 @12:57AM (#29386175) Homepage Journal

    Hah, using NTFS actually causes MORE problems for the Windows user?

    Format a usb drive NTFS, and put some files onto it. Now, attempt to use this drive on another windows machine.

    Notice anything funny about the file permissions? Heh, this is the same problem Linux has with UID/GIDs on removable media!

    Interesting how the 'correct' fix for both is to use an antiquated filesystem.

    I wonder if and when we will ever see an equivalent of FAT64, to get around file size issues.

  • Re:ext3 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by JWSmythe (446288) <jwsmytheNO@SPAMjwsmythe.com> on Friday September 11, 2009 @02:25AM (#29386529) Homepage Journal

    Everything is offensive to someone

    False equivalency. You've just equated Nazis and the KKK with Teletubbies in terms of offensiveness. Bravo.

        That really depends on who you ask. Ask a proud KKK member, and they'll probably say the Teletubbies. Well, after the blacks, jews, and ... well, anyone not white. I'd say ask a Nazi, but ... well ... all that's left are very old men and the "neo-nazi"'s.

        Not that I'm expressing any support or opposition for any of your selected choices. I'm just clarifying that it's all in the individuals perspective.

        As for the offense that you took towards his message, wouldn't your own statement be taking light to what the first two groups listed have done in the past? But who am I to say that a group with millions of deaths accounted towards them could be viewed wrong as a comparison to the Teletubbies, or to Hans Reiser?

        But, I shouldn't even be writing this, since you've clearly stepped into Godwin's law territory.

        [ducking from massive -100 Godwin Violation moderations]

  • Re:ext3 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Eskarel (565631) on Friday September 11, 2009 @02:33AM (#29386563)

    It was pretty mediocre code to begin with. Interesting, but not anywhere near as revolutionary in practice as people seem to think. Add to that the fact that Reiser was it's primary maintainer and core developer and it's probably not worth bothering with. Especially since SSD's are likely to change the design of file systems rather dramatically in the next few years.

    Plus, slashdot has a lot of karma to make up for all of their "just because they found his car with the seat ripped out and a huge spot of her blood in it doesn't mean he killed her, he's just misunderstood" crap they spouted when he was being tried, so a little criticism of him and his works even things out a bit.

  • Re:ext3 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bit01 (644603) on Friday September 11, 2009 @04:12AM (#29386973)

    I hear this bullshit often, and thats what it is, bullshit.

    You're the bullshitter. Get out into the real world. There are billions of people, thousands of languages, thousands of accounting standards. Many are not supported by windows, many are in the third world where the price of windows is a deal breaker, many are conforming to standards you've never heard of, many want software they control, many detest DRM and all it stands for, and many are thinking long term and not the short-term, blinkered thinking you're professing.

    M$ marketing and people sucked in by their propaganda like to claim Windows is the only possible alternative however it's just a dishonest attempt to create a self-fulfilling prophesy.

    In reality windows is only one of a number of alternatives, nothing lasts forever, and one size does not fit all.

    ---

    I never look at alternatives because I'm going to be running the same OS for the rest of eternity.

  • Re:ext3 (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Aim Here (765712) on Friday September 11, 2009 @06:19AM (#29387535)

    Innocent code? ReiserFS? You cannot be serious!

    I've trashed more than one Linux install (okay, two) by attempting to use reiser's own utilities to undelete some accidentally rmstarred files or other. Hang, draw and quarter the sonovabitch, that's what I say! Death's too good for him!

    Oh and apparently he killed someone. Maybe he should pay a fine for that too, or something.

  • by Waffle Iron (339739) on Friday September 11, 2009 @08:31AM (#29388099)

    That doesn't mean it isn't crappy. It especially isn't "in no way crappy", as the GP post asserted.

    There are plenty of abysmal widely used "standards" we are stuck with for no other reason than the fact that everybody uses them. FAT32 is one of them.

  • by Tetsujin (103070) on Friday September 11, 2009 @11:03AM (#29389473) Homepage Journal

    Not sure I'd use Reiser - I hear it's murder on your USB drive.

    It's easy to make fun of Reiser, the murderer, but don't forget, your laughs are at the expense of an innocent woman who was brutally murdered as well as two orphaned children.

    If one cannot laugh about the bad things in life, then the world becomes a very bleak place.

Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurence of the improbable. - H. L. Mencken

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