Mounting partitions at startup with /etc/fstab

One thing that is helpful for me is knowing how to set up /etc/fstab to mount partitions at boot. I dual-boot my laptop with Win7 and Linux and have another NTFS "Data" partition accessible from both operating systems. I've also set up partitions for two separate Linux installs, and a shared 4GB swap for them.

Below is a screenshot of my hard drive partitions in GParted (available in the repos).

Note: If using a newer Windows computer (Win7 or newer) it's recommended that the Windows "Disk Management" utility is used to shrink the Windows partition (if neccessary). GParted could then be used to manage the resulting unallocated space.


I made the directories I needed for mount points in /mnt

sudo mkdir /mnt/sda1 /mnt/win7 /mnt/sda3 /mnt/data_partition /mnt/arch8

...and then ran "sudo blkid" to get the UUID's and added them to my /etc/fstab

When the /etc/fstab is ready run "sudo mount -a" in the terminal to check for errors.

# /etc/fstab: static file system information.
# Use 'blkid' to print the universally unique identifier for a
# device; this may be used with UUID= as a more robust way to name devices
# that works even if disks are added and removed. See fstab(5).
# <file system> <mount point>  <type>  <options>  <dump>  <pass>
# / was on /dev/sda6 during installation
UUID=f5e0d5b1-f810-4c51-80e2-c936f53f1444 /     ext4     rw,relatime,data=ordered     0       1
# swap on /dev/sda7
UUID=abc5a013-c49e-49ac-8a26-91891196fe50 none     swap     defaults     0       0
# /dev/sda1
UUID=2AC27AD5C27AA4AB /mnt/sda1     ntfs    defaults,nls=utf8,umask=227     0       1
# /dev/sda2
# UUID=7262BFB062BF7785 /mnt/win7     ntfs    defaults,nls=utf8,umask=007,gid=46 0       1
UUID=7262BFB062BF7785 /mnt/win7     ntfs    defaults,nls=utf8,umask=227     0       1
# /dev/sda3 WIN7 RECOVERY
UUID=A4EA7D4EEA7D1E2C /mnt/sda3     ntfs    defaults,nls=utf8,umask=227     0       1
# /dev/sda5
UUID=3C4BB450261FC881  /mnt/data_partition     ntfs-3g    uid=1000,gid=100,umask=0022    0       0
# Arch8 /dev/sda8
UUID=f89bdc83-0e81-4a4b-96a4-03c2b33c8f1c /mnt/arch8     ext4     defaults     0       0

The mount options in the first line for the NTFS "DATA" partition work for the main user
(with user id = 1000, group id = 100).

Also - when mounting directories on ext file systems (e.g. for data partitions) you can use "chown" to change ownership on the directory to your user like "sudo chown -R <username>/path/to/dir" (for single user).

sudo chown -R <username>: /path/to/dir

(Using the "<username>: " changes both the owner and group permissions to the owner's.)

Other /etc/fstab guides:

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