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New Needed to reliably write USB NTFS from Debian Etch.
It took an entire day to get everything worked out and procedures written up. I could write a long detail list of all the problems encountered but that would probably send poor Greg into hysterics.

In any case, ntfs-3g wanted a kernel 2.6.20 or later and Debian Etch comes with 2.6.18. I found references for later kernels on a Debian backport server but that server was apparently off-line. I downloaded from www.kernel.org.

It would have prevented hundreds of man-hours of frustration and heavy Internet traffic had the kernel guys taken care of just a few little details. At 2.6.20 they moved the SATA/PATA stuff to a new location while leaving the old stuff in place in the .config, and with inadequate notes.

Now that wouldn't have caused so much trouble, except they left SATA/PATA disabled and all drivers disabled!

Many guys couldn't reboot their systems at all and they were not getting good answers in the discussion groups either. I always keep the original 2.6.18 "kitchen sink" kernel for emergencies so I was in a much better position.

I also noted the .config that comes with each version and subversion I tried is radically different, apparently just whatever a developer happened to have on his system at the time. That's kinda sloppy.

I first tried the "latest stable" kernel, but it didn't make an installable .deb file for some reason. I succeeded with (compiled with --initrd - the old method making the initrd separately didn't seem to work any more).

That would have been sufficient to the task but I tried again with which worked fine too (once I fixed up the .config).

All better now, external USB drive mounts, reads, writes, and umounts without problems or complaints - however this job is now in no way profitable.
New Scary insight into the internals of kernel releases.
Makes me glad I wait for the kernel versions to come through the normal distro upgrades, though I do understand why you couldn't do that.

Are you willing and brave enough to post a fuller story with more technical detail somewhere it will get noticed? Sounds like a mess that needs The Right People to fix.


Is it enough to love
Is it enough to breathe
Somebody rip my heart out
And leave me here to bleed
Is it enough to die
Somebody save my life
I'd rather be Anything but Ordinary

-- "Anything but Ordinary" by Avril Lavigne.

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· [link|http://staticsan.livejournal.com/|blog] ·
· [link|http://yceran.org/|website] ·

     Needed to reliably write USB NTFS from Debian Etch. - (Andrew Grygus) - (1)
         Scary insight into the internals of kernel releases. - (static)

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