USB Drive sometimes auto mounts as read-only

Niels Andersen niels.ejvind.andersen at
Sun Apr 27 19:50:41 UTC 2008

On Sun, Apr 27, 2008 at 5:23 AM, Pat Brown <pat.mysterywriter at>

> Ioannis Vranos wrote:
> > Niels Andersen wrote:
> >
> >> Since I don't think I will ever
> >> get all my necessary Windows applications to run under ubuntu, my other
> >> option
> >> is to install a Virtual Machine on the Windows XP system, so I can load
> >> ubuntu
> >> as a second OS, but I am not there yet.
> >>
> >
> >
> > Have a look at the following interesting stuff:
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> I somehow missed the original post. My USB memory stick sometimes does
> this. I haven't tried it since upgrading to 8.04 LTS, but if it does
> happen again what was the response from the list?

It was my USB drive, and here is my final post on the problem.  I wrote:
|| My USB Drive sometimes auto mounts as a read-only file system on Ubuntu
7.10 i386 desktop.
||  This does not happen frequently, but when it does, it means I can't
update any files on the drive.
||  How do I switch it to a read-write file system?  Is there something I
can do to keep it
|| from being mounted as read-only?

|| I have tried unmounting it and inserting it into another USB port, with
the same results.
||  I am going to reboot my desktop  to see if I can |  resolve this issue.
If that fails, I
|| intend to copy all the files off the USB drive, format it (as FAT32), and
then restore the files.

|The reboot did not resolve the issue.  Next, I will try copying the files
from the USB drive,
|reformat it, and then put the files back on.

The reformat worked. Looks like the USB drive became corrupted...again!

Before I reformatted the drive I copied all the files into a temporary
"Niels USB Drive", on my desktop.

Since the drive was corrupted, the drag and drop would freeze, soI had to
one sub-directory at a time.  The drag and drops still froze, and the copy
boxes never closed, so I had to check that the files were indeed copied
to the temporary directory and could be opened.

I had to log out a couple of times to clear the copy messages, and then
copying directories to the temporary directory.

Once the files were copied, I used fdisk -l to determine the drive name
Then used the Gnome Partition Editor, Gparted (previously installed), to
and format the USB drive as FAT32.  The USB drive needs to be readable by a
Windows XP machine, so FAT32 is mandatory.

Gparted is scary, because it is possible to inadvertently format the hard
instead of the USB drive (I have not, and never intend to confirm this

I like my drives to have names so after the drive had been formatted I used
mlabel to
label the drive:

$ sudo mlabel -i /dev/sdc1 ::Niels

The new label doesn't show up, so I unmounted and re-mounted the drive to
confirm that ubuntu could see the new label.

Lastly I copied the files back.

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