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I am new to Ubuntu, trying to share files between OS's dual boot XP, Ubuntu 12.04.

Are there programs to load on each OS to do this?

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The easiest way is having a third partition formated in FAT32 and mounting it automatically in /etc/fstab. This partition will be seen by Ubuntu and WindowsXP without problem, so you could use it to save all you need.

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NTFS or FAT32 partition should be recognized, but id not you can simply mount it with Partition manager. I've been working this way for several years with no problem...

On the other hand you'd might like to access Ubuntu files from XP. For this you need program either to mount linux (ext2,ext3 or ext4) partition as drive. Explore2fs, Ext2Fsd, DiskInternals Linux Reader... There are many! I had no problems with ext2 or ext3, but there were problems with reading ext4. Some programs might have problems writing to ext partition... Google it.

Ps: I also made a different partition for /home directory, so that reading from XP wouldn't harm root of linux... Just to stay in the safe zone ;)

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As I mentioned (also in folowing post), there is a program ext2read, BUT I had a problem with large files. Does not work 100%. After a few years of working this way I decided do use Windows as a virtual machine VirtualBox and Ubuntu as base OS. The beauty of this is that zou can run bouth systems at the same time. Perhaps zou should think about it too. – infotronika Apr 22 '13 at 9:27

Ubuntu will read/write all the information that you have in the Windows partition, because those partitions would be FAT or NTFS and both partitions are recognized by Ubuntu.

The problem is in Windows (as always). Windows can read/write the previously mentioned system formats, but it can not recognize extX (ext2, ext3 or ext4) partitions.

So, if you Ubuntu system is in a extX partition (must of the cases) it won't be recognized by Windows. But there is a work around to recognize extX file systems from Windows, just review the following post where you will find the necessary information:

How to read ext4 partitions in Windows?

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