Right, my scenario is that I have a Linux system set up and I was thinking about maybe setting up a Windows 10 dual boot, for reasons.

The problem is that I like gaming, and I have a hard drive formatted to ext4 I've been using on Linux to play games, most of these games are in fact Windows native games being run through Wine or Proton.

I know Windows 10 can read ext4 with third party software (like ext2fsd), but can I get Windows to execute these games, for example by having a steam library on the ext4 partition and running games off of it?

2 Answers 2


If it's an *.exe file stored on the ext4 partition then of course Windows can run it, unless the file is not meant for that architecture. But it'll be better to store on a Windows native file system

If it's a Linux ELF file then you can run it under WSL only in case it's a CLI executable, or a light GUI app (after installing an X server on Windows)

  • This sounds like the answer I needed, I want to test it before I accept it though to be sure.
    – Cestarian
    Apr 21, 2019 at 2:54
  • I have an update on this, I have not found any reasonable software that can read/write ext4 partitions for windows 10. ext2fsd got the job done on windows 7 but it does not seem to work as intended on the 10. I wonder if WSL can fill in this gap...
    – Cestarian
    Jun 12, 2019 at 12:03
  • How to read ext4 partitions on Windows?
    – phuclv
    Jun 12, 2019 at 15:23
  • indeed I tried just about everything recommended in there.
    – Cestarian
    Jun 12, 2019 at 15:51
  • I believe it should work fine. But if there are any issues you need to ask a different question
    – phuclv
    Jun 12, 2019 at 16:06

What works/worked for me with the various games (QuakeWorld thru Quake3, Return to CW, the Unreal series, etc) is to install native binaries on both OSes and then on the Linux side symlink the Windows side user-directories into the Linux user-directory location(s). Binaries native in each OS, config and downloaded maps, etc. shared without pain.

Same technique can work for sharing things like Firefox and Thunderbird profiles on a dual boot system.

  • Yeah that is the ideal approach, however I already have my disk formatted to ext4 and it's full, formatting it to ntfs so I can use it normally with windows again is too much of a pain. I wasn't intending on using windows again, but I'm experiencing an annoying (and serious) issue that I'm wondering if it would go away when I'm on windows instead.
    – Cestarian
    Apr 21, 2019 at 2:56

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