I am having issues getting usb drives to work correctly in Ubuntu and have read various bug reports of certain formats not working correctly in Ubuntu.

If I want to format a usb drive from inside Windows for maximum capability with Ubuntu, what format type and program should be used ?

Note: This pertains to usb drives as portable storage devices and not anything to do with making bootable media.

2 Answers 2


Ubuntu 14.04 should work with FAT32 and NTFS from the get-go. However, FAT32 has a max file limit of 4GB (any files larger than this can't be put on it).

If you install exfat-fuse on Ubuntu by typing sudo apt-get install exfat-fuse into the command line, Ubuntu should also mount the exFAT filesystem, which is similar to FAT32 except it does not impose the 4GB file limit.


NTFS format would be the best option.

You can format the usb drive using windows built in tool, which may be on the right click menu.

So right click on the USB drive and it should be as easy as selecting 'format' and choosing 'NTFS'.

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