NTFSPROGS(8) System Manager's Manual NTFSPROGS(8)
libntfs-gnomevfs - Module for GNOME VFS that allows access to NTFS
The GNOME virtual filesystem (VFS) provides universal access to differ-
ent filesystems. The libntfs-gnomevfs module enables GNOME VFS aware
clients to seamlessly utilize the NTFS library libntfs.
So you can access an NTFS filesystem without needing to use the NTFS
utilities themselves (at least in theory anyway). In practice this is
probably more useful for programs and programmers to make using libntfs
easier, more generic, and to allow easier debugging of libntfs.
To be able to follow these examples you will need to have installed the
test utilities from the gnome-vfs-2.4.x package. The easiest way to do
this is to download and compile the gnome-vfs-2 package, e.g. download
Then run ./configure followed by make and make install (as root). This
will install it into /usr/local so it should not conflict with your
existing installation from rpm or deb packages which will be in /usr.
Note you may also need to add /usr/local/lib to /etc/ld.so.conf and
then run ldconfig (as root) to let your system see the installed gnome-
Then run ./configure followed by make and make install (as root) in the
main ntfsprogs directory to build and install the libntfs-gnomevfs mod-
ule and libntfs library which is used by the module.
Copying a file from an NTFS partition
To copy the file autoexec.bat from the main directory of an NTFS parti-
tion (/dev/hda1) to the /tmp directory on your system you could run:
To copy a file from a directory inside the NTFS partition you would
just specify the full path. So for example to copy the file win.ini
from the Windows directory you would run:
Shell access to an NTFS partition
For debugging it is most useful to be able to do various things to the
NTFS partition while it is being operated upon by libntfs. This is
achieved using the test-shell utility (from the gnome-vfs-2.4.x pack-
age) by running: /path/to/gnome-vfs-2.4.x/test/test-shell
This drops you into the GNOME VFS shell from where you can now cd into
the NTFS partition (/dev/hda1) by typing: cd file:///dev/hda1#libntfs:/
You are now in the root directory of the NTFS partition. The first
thing you will probably want to do is to type "ls" to display the
You could then change directories using the "cd" command, e.g. to enter
the Windows directory you would type: cd Windows
You can then open files, seek inside files, read from files (write is
not enabled at present), etc thus exercising large portions of the NTFS
Use the "help" command while in the shell to see the available com-
No bugs are known but there are several limitations at the moment:
You cannot get information about files other than what the "ls" command
in the test-shell can give you, i.e. the "info" command in the test-
shell does not work.
Further access to the partition is read-only and hence you cannot write
to files. This will be changed in the future once the module has had
more wide testing.
There may be other limitations and possibly bugs. Please report any
problems to the NTFS mailing list: linux-ntfs-devATlists.net
The libntfs-gnomevfs module was written by Jan Kratochvil. This man
page was written by Anton Altaparmakov.
The ntfsprogs package which contains the libntfs-gnomevfs module can be
downloaded from http://linux-ntfs.sourceforge.net/downloads.html These
manual pages can be viewed online at http://linux-ntfs.source-
Linux-NTFS version 1.9.4 November 2003 NTFSPROGS(8)