Ext2 for USB flash drives [SOLVED]

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Rademes
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Ext2 for USB flash drives [SOLVED]

Post by Rademes »

Good day!
As you know, FAT32 file system has maximum file size limitation - 4GB. Nowadays, with new USB flash drives with capacity more than 32GB, I started to search an alternative filesystem for my USB flash drives. exFAT is not a choice, because it is proprietary and does not supported in Linux. So I decided to try Ext2.
So the question is, can Ext2 filesystem be safely used on USB flash drives?
P.S. I do not use Windows, so I do not need Windows compatible filesystem.
Last edited by Rademes on Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

Laurent85
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Re: Ext2 for USB flash drives

Post by Laurent85 »

f2fs is a better alternative, it was designed for flash memory.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F2FS

Install f2fs-tools to be able to format to f2fs using the command line or gparted:

Code: Select all

apt install f2fs-tools
Last edited by Laurent85 on Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:12 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Mute Ant
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Re: Ext2 for USB flash drives

Post by Mute Ant »

"...can an ext2 filesystem safely be used on a USB flash drive..." Yes.
[-] You don't get the benefits of 'journalling' introduced with ext3.
[-] You don't get the benefits of 'extents' introduced with ext4.
...but that's okay...
[+] The flash controller 'journals' into its own workspace. If data gets to the store, it's safe.
[+] 'extents' are irrelevant for SSD stores. The data is kept where the USB controller wants it, not where Linux wants it.
[+] FAT or EXT offer the best chance of data-recovery after an 'accident', just because they are old and stable.
While you're waiting, read the free novel we sent you. It's a Spanish story about a guy named "manual".

benali72
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Re: Ext2 for USB flash drives

Post by benali72 »

>>>> So the question is, can Ext2 filesystem be safely used on USB flash drives?

Yes.

But as Mute Ant states, you could get more benefits with a different filesystem choice.

>>>> exFAT is not a choice, because it is proprietary and does not supported in Linux.

I don't believe that is correct. You can install the packages exfat-fuse and exfat-utils via the Synaptic Package Manager for full support of exFat formatted pen drives in Mint.

Personally I prefer exFat because it can be used across Linux, Windows, and Apple. It's universal and simple, and can store HUGE files way past the old file size limits. But it is limited in some ways -- no journaling, no compression, no encryption.

Excellent background article "What File System Should I use for My Pen Drive" found here -- www.howtogeek.com/73178/what-file-syste ... usb-drive/

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I2k4
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Re: Ext2 for USB flash drives

Post by I2k4 »

Rademes wrote:
Sun Aug 26, 2018 11:29 am
Good day!
...
P.S. I do not use Windows, so I do not need Windows compatible filesystem.
I personally format storage drives as NTFS not only for Windows but Android devices with "On The Go" functionality - using good cross-platform ENCFS encryption (that is not state of the art, but good enough for the average jerk hacker-thief) where there's a concern for security. I've found Mint Linux accesses and executes media from NTFS storage perfectly. Obviously a personal use case, but don't underestimate the inconvenience of having a very restrictive storage format in unexpected circumstances.
TRUST BUT VERIFY any advice from anybody, including me. M19.1 XFCE (Dell 1520). Dual booting M19.1 XFCE / W7 (Acer netbook) and M19.1 XFCE / W7 (Lenovo desktop). All 32 bit Windows systems are running 64 bit Mint.

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Rademes
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Re: Ext2 for USB flash drives

Post by Rademes »

Thank You for very fast response and extensive answers. I haven`t said, that I am planning to use Ext2 formatted USB flash drives mainly for backups, such as Timeshift RSYNC backups and Clonezilla Live created system backups. Also as I said, I do not use Windows any-more.
So, after reading your posts, I have decided to use Ext2. Thank you again.

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