Is there any way to run Ubuntu from USB stick with a FAT32 casper-rw persistence partition? If I use an Ext2 casper-rw partition everything works fine. However, if I switch to FAT32, the system gives the following error during boot:

(initramfs) aufs mount failed

I guess this happens because aufs cannot handle FAT32. Is there any way to work around this so that I am able to access the persistence partition from Windows too?

2 Answers 2


Just for reference, one can achieve Gabriel goal (have access to the persistent data from the live as from any host OS) using at least one of these two ways:

A - Make a Data partition

  1. Make your persistent partition just big enough for the applications you'll add or update.
  2. Then create a third, Fat32 partition for all your upcoming persistent data.
  3. Use any tool that makes your third (Data) partition apears first for Windows, so that it let you use it easily. RMPrepUSB does this in half a minute, following their tutorial : point « 4a. Use RMPrepUSB » alone does the job well (2).

After what you can use this Data partition to store/read your files from either the live system and any host OS (Android included which is nice :). I also symlink my live system's user $HOME/{Documents,Images,and so on} from the Data partition. This way I don't even have to think about where to put or find them :)

B - Add read/write support to the Windows host for ext partitions

With either of these tools: Explorer2fs (read), Ext2 IFS (read/write) Accessing a Linux Ext2 or Ext3 partiton from Windows or Ext2FSd (read/write Ext2/3/4). But this method requires the partition to be the first or you'll get stucked by (1)

(1) Windows is unable to use partition #2+ on a USB removable media. (2) If you know how to swap the partitions order for Windows under *nix, you might want to share it :)


No, aufs handles FAT32 perfectly.

Check out Slax Linux

You must have done something wrong. Need more details to diagnostic. E.g. how did you switch persistence partition from Ext2 to FAT32, in details?

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