CORRECTLY Auto Mount Seagate EXFAT External USB Drive on Ubuntu – Permanent Mounting

CORRECTLY Auto Mount Seagate EXFAT External USB Drive on Ubuntu - Permanent MountingI am confident there is a solution out there to this problem that I encountered with permanently and auto-mounting an EXFAT formatted Seagate External Hard Drive on Ubuntu but in the last 2 years Google’s search engine has become so utterly useless at finding good solid information. So here’s a simple and working guide to CORRECTLY Auto Mount Seagate EXFAT External USB Drive on Ubuntu – Permanent Mounting.

I remember the days when searching for Ubuntu or any related tech solutions would yield solid working page results in the first 1-5 results of page 1 of Google but these days it’s just garbage, utter garbage. It’s one reason this web site still exists, to try and keep solid working solutions and tutorials for Ubuntu out there HOPEFULLY findable on Google.

Anyway enough of that. Let’s get top the solution. If you have a Seagate External USB Hard Drive that you bought in the last few years it is undoubtedly formatted with EXFAT straight out of the box, unless it was a mac version of the drive which had a Mac logo on the box then it would be HPFS but most of you are sitting with an EXFAT drive in your hands.

So on Ubuntu this is the behavior you will experience with these drives. You plug them in and they show in File Manager as removable device, you can browse the drive but you cannot play a video file off the drive, nor can you write to the drive. Essentially you are sitting with a dumb device attached to your machine.

The problem is that Ubuntu sees the USB device but does not actually correctly mount it, so it appears but it unusable.

The first problem is that the EXFAT file system is not recognised properly by Ubuntu so your first steps are to install EXFAT. Open Terminal and run the following commands.

sudo apt-add-repository ppa:relan/exfat
sudo apt-get install fuse
sudo apt-get install exfat-fuse
sudo apt-get install exfat-utils

Ok so now the EXFAT file system drivers are installed, now you are able to mount your drive but this always requires manual intervention, so first let’s find your device name. Type the code in terminal below.

sudo blkid

This will give you information like this.

xxx@mypc:~$ sudo blkid
/dev/sda1: UUID="be770875-765e-4ddd-9428-6624606a5599" TYPE="ext4" PARTUUID="070ba9f0-01"
/dev/sda5: UUID="e57fc4c3-efcc-4ea3-86e1-758a90af5405" TYPE="swap" PARTUUID="070ba9f0-05"
/dev/sdb1: LABEL="NEW2" UUID="A42B-CFB6" TYPE="exfat"

The very last line is your External Seagate USB device and you will see it’s Device Label, ID and Format as EXFAT. In this case what you need from this is the /dev/sdb1 part

No it is as simple as making a mount point with a friendly name for your drive. In this example I call mine home-media so in terminal do the following

sudo mkdir /mnt/home-media

So now you want it to mount every time you start the operating system. To do this you need to edit the fstab file in Ubuntu, type the following in terminal.

sudo nano /etc/fstab

You are now editing the fstab file, scroll down to the last line and add the following.

/dev/sdb1 /mnt/home-media exfat defaults,auto,umask=000,users,rw 0 0

click CTRL+X to exit the Nano Editor
click Y to save
Reboot your Ubuntu box.

Now when you log into ubuntu and go to file manage you will see NO USB Device at all, but it is there I promise you.

Click on Computer (in File Manager)

Double Click on the mnt folder

In there you will see the home-media mount you created above, double-click in there and you will see all your files on your seagate drive and you will be able to open, them, change them and do whatever you want.

Simply click Bookmark > Bookmark this location and it will now always appear in your File Manager on the bottom right.

Now things like your PLEX Media Server will be able to see your drive and make changes.


Enjoy, share this if you found this useful.

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