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Is it possible to create a FAT32 Parition in Ubuntu Persistent USB that is Windows-readable? If so how?

I created a FAT32 partition in the past and labelled it as '/windows', though this was unable to be read by Windows 7 and only accessible through the root user on Ubuntu - I eventually was able to read it through editing fstab, but just as before, on Windows 7 it said 'The drive 'x' must be formatted before it can be used.' or something along those lines. I have since formatted and am now in the process of deciding partitions and sizes, but I believe I created the '/windows' partition as Primary, 2GB, and as FAT32. Should it be logical, or within the '/home' partition?

On a separate note, which subdirectories of '/' should I create as a separate partition, and how large - especially for '/home' - is it necessary?

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By design, Windows can only read the first partition of a flash drive.

For your 'windows' partition to be visible from Windows, it should thus be the first partition on your flash drive. You should format it as FAT32 for maximum compatibility with Windows and Mac machines. Primary is fine.

This way, Windows won't see your Linux partitions, but it'll happily read and write data on the 'windows' partition.

After, you can create your Ubuntu root partition ("/"), your swap partition, and (if desired) your '/home' partition. These are the standard partitions for a well-behaved Linux install.*


*Some would say that a separate "/boot", "/var", or "/other" partition is desirable. I personally never saw the advantage of this, but in the end I guess it all comes down to personal preference.

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Thanks. So is there a need for a separate '/home' partition? –  Marco Scannadinari Mar 24 '12 at 19:49
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It can be of some use if, for instance, your system files become damaged and you need to reinstall. By having a separate home partition, only the root partition gets formatted and your data and most of your settings remain intact. –  SirCharlo Mar 25 '12 at 20:14
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