I have everything currently installed on a 120GB SSD. I've recently installed a 2nd drive (480 ssd) which I've partitioned for about 90% personal use and 10% in case I add 'other' purposes. I@ve not yet stated a mount point in fstab.

I want to shift my complete home folder to this drive (its main partition).

I know the answer is 'google it', and I've done that but can't seem to get a definitive answer and nothing directly referring to 18.04.

Can someone please point me towards a good guide for doing this? Do I need to boot into a live distro?

Many thanks.


2 Answers 2


Please keep /home itself at the same disk that has your system files and ONLY move your personal directories. Move the directories in your /home to your new destination and alter ~./config/users-dirs.dirs to reflect this change.

Reason: in the case your 2nd disk does not mount your /home is not mounted leaving you with a broken system.

I have not yet stated a mount point in fstab.

You do need to do this first though. Have a look at ...

  • I keep /home inside / (root) but it is tiny as it only has user configuration files, mostly hidden. But all data is in a data partition. I primarily do this as I have multiple installs and want to access same data in all of them. But may want different user settings as I can then test changes without changing main working install. askubuntu.com/questions/1013677/… & askubuntu.com/questions/1058756/…
    – oldfred
    Commented Jan 20, 2020 at 14:18
  • That's what I do too. I have hmm 9 different installs now (at work; not just Ubuntu). So much easier to just mount a disk into a linux system with your own data.
    – Rinzwind
    Commented Jan 20, 2020 at 14:22
  • So if I were to mount the 2nd drive at /hdd for example, I'd move my Videos folder to XDG_VIDEOS_DIR="/hdd/Videos" (after creating that folder folder of course) ?
    – Roger06
    Commented Jan 20, 2020 at 15:28
  • @Roger06 yes. I would use /mnt/hdd/Videos (/mnt is for mounting internal disks, /media for external disks) OR use a dedicated directory (my system had a /discworld/ that has all my user dirs (Desktop, Videos etc) and holds all other stuff like backups and vbox containers.
    – Rinzwind
    Commented Jan 20, 2020 at 15:32
  • What have I done wrong? I've mounted the disk at /mnt/hdd. I've changed the line in my user-dirs.dirs for Videos to XDG_VIDEOS_DIR="/mnt/hdd/Videos". This is the folder I get when I click the 'Videos' link in the side bar of a Files window, but if I click the 'Videos' folder in the main panel of my home folder I still get the old one. I've rebooted. If I delete the 'old' one with the 'new' one show in the panel? Thanks
    – Roger06
    Commented Jan 23, 2020 at 18:15

Changing user-dirs.dirs seems to have no affect. I've also tested in a VM running Mint and it does not change the location of one of the folders. Is there something else that needs to run? Does fstab need another addition?


  • I can do it if I add the folder as a sym link to the one on the mounted drive - but that doesn't seem right.
    – Roger06
    Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 19:15
  • Well I've done it with sym links - doesn't seem quite right but it does the job.
    – Roger06
    Commented Feb 7, 2020 at 9:18

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