Mounting UFS drives - is this a unix holy war?

Gary W. Swearingen garys at
Fri Jul 14 16:35:51 UTC 2006

"gabrielle harrison and Paul van den Bergen" <gabpaul at> writes:

> I've got both FreeBSD and kubuntu machines running at the moment and  occasionally I've needed to mount a HDD from one
> machine on the other.

When I switched to FreeBSD in 2001 (I've been back 6 mo), my tests
convinced my that neither FreeBSD or Linux could reliably use the
other's partitions, so I wound up transfering files by tar'ing into
a raw partition from Linux and untar'ing in FreeBSD.  I hope things
have improved, but you might want to do a good diff test.

> I know they use different partition schemes.  so why is ther no obvious  mount type for them (fdisk is quite happy with
> all the official available  formats - er... except when I go to see exactly where to give an example,  I can't find
> it... *sheesh*)

All fdisk has to worry about is a single byte which specifies the
partition's format.  Mounting, reading, etc, is _much_ more complex.

> I know FreeBSD has a mount_ext2fs (not sure why it does not have ext3fs)  but linux does not seem to have a mount_ufs
> equivalent. is this right?

Like the guy said, "-t ufs", but unless maybe it's the default,
you'll also need "-ufstype=44bsd".

> ideally I want to set up 1 machine with 3 disks... 1 with root mount  points and shared swap and one each for /usr for
> FreeBSD and for kubuntu

Maybe, but I wouldn't want to share /var, at least.

My scheme has been to have one /u partition which has all my
personal stuff.  If that could be some format shared by Linux
and BSD it would be great (maybe one of the newer ones like
Reiser is supported by both OSes), but I've only switched OSes
twice, by tar'ing and untar'ing my stuff into an OS-specific
format.  Anyway, each OS has / of about 150 MB which is big 
enough for my /var and other root needs.  I have a script
which saves a compressed copy of / to some file in /u so I
can just back up /u .  My home directories (including a
copy of /root) are all under /u  (probably could have used
/home but like to keep it away from installer scripts).

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