Main Content

Mount exFAT Formatted Drives In Ubuntu

ExFAT is an abbreviation for Extended File Allocation Table a file system intended for use in flash drives, exFAT main advantage over the more traditional FAT/FAT32 file system is that it can store a file larger than 4GB. With the increase in flash drive capacity FAT/FAT32 can be limiting. While exFAT sounds like the right solution it comes with inherit problems for users of Free Software such as Linux, you see exFAT is a file system created and patented by Microsoft meaning due to patents support for exFAT in Free Software is bound to be flaky.

ExFAT adoption is not a problem for the Windows platform: by Windows XP (SP2), Vista, and 7 are already support exFAT.

While not the best solution it is possible to mount exFAT formatted drives by using FUSE which is also an abbreviation for File system in Userspace, 🙁 .

Installation and Configuration

Before you can make use of Fuse-exFAT you need to first install python-software-properties which includes add-apt-repository.

  • This is required of you wish to continue with this tutorial, this package includes the tool needed to add the repository.
  • sudo apt-get install python-software-properties
  • Add the new PPA (http://pre.google.com/p/exfat/).
  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:relan/exfat
  • Update the system.
  • sudo apt-get update
  • Install Fuse-exFAT
  • sudo apt-get install fuse-exfat
  • Create a directory where we can mount the drive.
  • sudo mkdir /media/exfat
  • Mount the drive and specify the file system used by the flash drive.
  • mount -t exfat /dev/sdb1 /media/exfat
  • Display the newly mounted exFAT drive.
  • user@ubuntu:~$ df -H
    Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
    /dev/sda1        54G  1.8G   49G   4% /
    udev            186M  4.1k  186M   1% /dev
    tmpfs            78M  279k   78M   1% /run
    none            5.3M     0  5.3M   0% /run/lock
    none            194M     0  194M   0% /run/shm
    /dev/sdb1        2.1G  525k  2.1G   1% /media/exfat

There you have it, it might not be pretty but it works.

Comments

  1. Commented on
    Comment by AXiS

    Thank you jeebus.. what a pita but it got me working so I could copy some 8GB ISOs to an external drive I formatted with eXFAT for use in OS X.

    1. Commented on
      Comment by Luis Ventura

      Is that a reference to the Simpsons, any way I am glad it was helpful.

  2. Commented on
    Comment by Peter

    What a great post Luis , that come just in time.

    I have exactly the same answer described by AXis

    “so I could copy some 8GB ISOs to an external drive I formatted with eXFAT for use in OS X.”

    Look like we are several using Ubuntu in conjonction with OSX . I tried Ntfs first but without much result . Then checked exFAT and here it is !

    Thanks again for your post .

    1. Commented on
      Comment by Luis Ventura

      Amazing, I also happen to be moving ISOs larger than 4GB. Thank you for visiting the blog and commenting.

  3. Commented on
    Comment by Billy Moon

    “it might not be pretty but it works”

    I think it looks pretty ,~)

  4. Commented on
    Comment by Onej

    I got following notice:
    “E: Unable to locate package fuse-exfat”
    what to do now?
    tnx in advance

  5. Commented on
    Comment by Bence

    I am a totally beginner, knowing nothing.

    But it worked!

    1. Commented on
      Comment by luisventura

      Glad it worked, we are all beginners at some point.

  6. Commented on
    Comment by Gokul

    whats the meaning of this error??

    Executing: gpg –ignore-time-conflict –no-options –no-default-keyring –secret-keyring /tmp/tmp.PDF8RSPffM –trustdb-name /etc/apt/trustdb.gpg –keyring /etc/apt/trusted.gpg –primary-keyring /etc/apt/trusted.gpg –keyserver hkp://keyserver.ubuntu.com:80/ –recv tag:launchpad.net:2008:redacted
    gpg: “tag:launchpad.net:2008:redacted” not a key ID: skipping

Comments are closed.