How to Mount Windows Partitions in Ubuntu

If you are running a dual-boot of Ubuntu and Windows, sometimes you might fail to access a Windows partition (formatted with NTFS or FAT32 filesystem type), while using Ubuntu, after hibernating Windows (or when it’s not fully shutdown).

This is because, Linux cannot mount and open hibernated Windows partitions (the full discussion of this is beyond the ambit of this article).

In this article, we will simply show how to mount Windows partition in Ubuntu. We will explain a few useful methods of solving the above issue.

Mount Windows Using the File Manager

The first and safest way is to boot into Windows and fully shutdown the system. Once you have done that, power on the machine and select Ubuntu kernel from the grub menu to boot into Ubuntu.

After a successful logon, open your file manager, and from the left pane, find the partition you wish to mount (under Devices) and click on it. It should be automatically mounted and its contents will show up in the main pane.

Mounted Windows Partition
Mounted Windows Partition

Mount Windows Partition in Read Only Mode From Terminal

The second method is to manually mount the filesystem in read only mode. Usually, all mounted filesystems are located under the directory /media/$USERNAME/.

Ensure that you have a mount point in that directory for the Windows partition (in this example, $USERNAME=aaronkilik and the Windows partition is mounted to a directory called WIN_PART, a name which corresponds to the device label):

$ cd /media/aaronkilik/
$ ls -l
List Mounted Partitions
List Mounted Partitions

In case the mount point is missing, create it using the mkdir command as shown (if you get “permission denied” errors, use sudo command to gain root privileges):

$ sudo mkdir /media/aaronkilik/WIN_PART

To find the device name, list all block devices attached to the system using the lsblk utility.

$ lsblk
List Block Devices
List Block Devices

Then mount the partition (/dev/sdb1 in this case) in read-only mode to the above directory as shown.

$ sudo mount -t vfat -o ro /dev/sdb1 /media/aaronkilik/WIN_PART		#fat32
$ sudo mount -t ntfs-3g -o ro /dev/sdb1 /media/aaronkilik/WIN_PART	#ntfs

Now to get mount details (mount point, options etc..) of the device, run the mount command without any options and pipe its output to grep command.

$ mount | grep "sdb1" 
List Windows Partition
List Windows Partition

After successfully mounting the device, you can access files on your Windows partition using any applications in Ubuntu. But, remember that, because the device is mounted as read-only, you will not be able to write to the partition or modify any files.

Also note that if Windows is in a hibernated state, if you write to or modify files in the Windows partition from Ubuntu, all your changes will be lost after a reboot.

For more information, refer to the Ubuntu community help wiki: Mounting Windows Partitions.

That’s all! In this article, we have shown how to mount Windows partition in Ubuntu. Use the feedback form below to reach us for any questions if you face any unique challenges or for any comments.

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3 thoughts on “How to Mount Windows Partitions in Ubuntu”

  1. Even the moment you click on the drive you want to access under Devices it mounts in read-only. So how has this writing helped? Complete waste of time.

    • @Osbon,

      To mount a Windows partition in Ubuntu with read and write permissions, you can use this command.

      $ sudo mount -o rw -t ntfs /dev/sdb /mnt/WIN_PART
  2. The read-only mounting is not much of a help, most of the time we need full controlled mounting.

    And this article does not help much.

    Thanks anyway.


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