I am studying how to make a dual boot system with win 8.1 and fedora 20 (since I know it is kind of tricky) and have found lots of informations and step-by-step solutions. I guess that is not my problem anymore. Either way, I was thinking on how it will work for me to deal with both systems and I thought it would be nice to have a personal data partition shared by both systems.

Is there a way to make my /home partition of fedora accessible on Win 8.1 as a data partition? Or do I have to have a different partition for personal data for both systems (other than the system partitions as /home)?

Thank you for your time :)


Short answer: It can be done, but it would break a lot and have performance issues.

Reason: In addition to your personal files a lot of other data is kept in your home folder e.g. configuration files. If you would go with NTFS partition for home then this would not enable you to use appropriate permission on files. Using ext4 on Windows 8 is not well supported.

Suggestion: Create a dual boot where Windows can use its native NTFS and Fedora its ext4 filesystem. Add an additional NTFS partition where you keep your personal files. Let's call it data partition. To make it more consistent I would propose using (soft)links from your home folder to the the partition in both operating systems. I will assume that you have mounted the data partition under /data in Fedora and assigned drive letter E: to it in Windows. In addition that you have folder called Pictures on the data partition that you would like to share.

Creating soft links from command line in Fedora:

ln -s /home/[your_username]/Pictures /data/Pictures    

Creating soft link (called Junction) to same folder in Windows Command Prompt:

mklink /j C:\Users\[your_username]\Pictures E:\Pictures    

For both cases make sure that the first folder would not already exist.

Hope this helps you to get the desired effect of same files under both home directories with the benefit of stable operating systems.

  • That was exactly the sort of answer I was hoping to get :D Really thank you for sharing this knowledge :) – Bruno Moutinho Nov 18 '14 at 22:49

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