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debernardis's Avatar
Posts: 2,123 | Thanked: 1,990 times | Joined on Dec 2006 @ Sicily
#1
Is there a way I can mount under windows (xp, vista) an ext3 filesystem enclosed in a loopback file?

Thanks all for any hint
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terrencegf's Avatar
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#2
I'm guessing a "loopback file" is the same thing as a "disk image"? (E.g. .iso or .img?) If so, then you need two pieces.

First you need a way to access ext2/ext3 filesystems in Windows. This can be accomplished using Ext2 IFS for Windows. See the FAQ regarding ext3 support.

Second, you need a way to mount the disk image (loopback file) as a virtual drive. This can be accomplished using a free tool like Daemon Tools, or a commercial product like Nero ImageDrive. Also, there is an unsupported tool for XP from Micro$oft called Virtual CD Control Panel (which I have never tried).

Once you install support for ext2/ext3 in Windows, you'll probably have to reboot. Then fire up Daemon Tools (for example), select the loopback file, and mount it as a new drive (E: for example). Now you should be able to read files from the new virtual drive.

P.S. Even though Ext2 IFS for Windows supports writing to a ext2/ext3 filesystem, you might not be able to write to a virtual drive (i.e. your loopback file).
 
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#3
Thanks, terrencegf, for that howto. I can't thank you with the Thanks! Button because this is in the "Off Topic" forum.
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debernardis's Avatar
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#4
Thanks a lot, Terrencegf, though my first tests with ext2ifs and daemon tools didn't achieve success. :-(
 
terrencegf's Avatar
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#5
I tried daemon tools and also failed mounting the ext2/3 image. Doing a little more research, I found something that DID work for me.

FileDisk (Scroll to the bottom of the page).

Basically, this is a little utility that lets you mount a image file as a new drive (e.g. "G:"). You still need to install the Ext2 IFS support since filedisk doesn't install any file system drivers.

Read the install instructions for filedisk carefully. You have to (1) copy a file to the Windows "drivers" folder, (2) add some entries to the registry, and (3) reboot. Then you use the examples to mount a image file as a new drive letter. This worked for me for a ext3 image I created in Fedora. And I was even able to write files to the newly mounted image.

If this doesn't work for you, let me know and maybe you can give specifics of the "loopback file" you are trying to mount.
 
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#6
<hits the non-existent "Thanks!" button again>
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#7
I suggest you try Virtual CloneDrive. It's free, no-hassle, supported software. Works like a charm.
I tried a few of the products suggested above, with varying levels of success.
You might also be interested in ISO Master. Linux version is free, Windows is demo.

Last edited by jpramlak; 2009-03-10 at 20:18.
 
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#8
<hits the non-existent "Thanks!" button again>
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terrencegf's Avatar
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#9
Originally Posted by jpramlak View Post
I suggest you try Virtual CloneDrive. It's free, no-hassle, supported software. Works like a charm.
VirtualCloneDrive is very similar to Nero ImageDrive. I tried it with an ext3 image file created in Fedora, but it didn't work. I think there is some issue with these types of programs and ext3 image files. So far the only solution I got to function correctly was FileDisk.
 
debernardis's Avatar
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#10
Thanks terrencegf, I'm now experimenting with a prepakaged version of filedisk, which can be found in http://www.jeffothy.com/weblog/filedisk-iso-mounter/

Basically, I want to be able to open a file-encapsulated ext3 fs in the easiest way for a vanilla-style windows user. This will need some efforts for repackaging various tools and possibly for putting them together in a portable app.


EDIT: Diskinternals linux reader might be the solution.
http://www.diskinternals.com/linux-reader/
Use the "mount image" command - will give read access to an ext3 image file . The mapdrive utility from the same vendor did not work in my hands.

Last edited by debernardis; 2009-03-18 at 07:16.
 
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