Ubuntu 6.06 accessing usb drives

I have written earlier about challenges of setting up Samba for a typical, mixed home network environment. One particular irritating bug was related to backing up/synchronizing files from my Vista workstation and Windows XP based laptop to a same, shared disk in the Ubuntu (6.06 LTS Server release) file & web server. Since I am a Scandinavian user, which means many non-ASCII characters in my file names, it has been pain to get all operating systems to read and display file names correctly. Setting up Samba to use UTF-8 in the smb.conf has been one important step. I used these parameters in my /etc/samba/smb.conf:

dos charset = CP850
unix charset = UTF-8
display charset = UTF-8

But one problem remained in how Ubuntu handled file names in the disk, which is a removable, USB-linked data storage. I finally seem to have solved the issue by tweaking /etc/fstab file; I have now this line for the USB disk:

/dev/sdb1       /musicdrive     vfat    rw,user,iocharset=utf8,umask=000,uid=113,gid=65534      0       0

The “iocharset” part seems to have done the trick.

Author: frans

Professor of Information Studies and Interactive Media, esp. Digital Culture and Game Studies in the University of Tampere, Finland.

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