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Automount USB drives in Debian

For a while now, removable drives were not automounting on my Debian box. I could have sworn it worked at one point but couldn't really figure it out. So I manually mounted the drives after I plugged them in. This grew tiring fairly quickly...


It is pretty easy to manually mount usb drives, provided you can figure out which device is being used.. To figure that out run dmesg.

desktop:/home/matt# dmesg
usb 2-1.2: new full speed USB device using address 9
scsi6 : SCSI emulation for USB Mass Storage devices
  Vendor: Generic   Model: USB Storage-MSC   Rev: 320A
  Type:   Direct-Access                      ANSI SCSI revision: 02
Attached scsi removable disk sda at scsi6, channel 0, id 0, lun 0
USB Mass Storage device found at 9

The key is to look at the Attached scsi removable disk [device] at ... line. In my case the device is sda, so to mount the drive..

desktop:/home/matt# mount -t vfat /dev/sda /media/usb

Well that worked pretty well but was infinitely more painful than windows. Note: sometimes I needed to use /dev/sda1 or /dev/sda2.


I use GNOME 2.1.. so these instructions are probably a mix of GNOME specific and system specific findings.

  1. Make sure Removable Drives and Media preferences are set properly. Look in Desktop--| Preferences--| Removable Drives and Media. The GUI is pretty self-explanatory.. check the boxes that you want to auto-mount.
  2. Make sure the userid is in the plugdev group.

My downfall? #2! At some point I must have whacked the groups by accident. Once I added my userid to the plugdev group (and logged out and came back in) automount was working like a champ! Smiling

nesecito de su ayuda!

tengo un mp3 player duo spirit 1Gb y por equivocacion lo formatie, y ahora no me reproduce la musica, como puedo colocarle de nuevo el programa reproductor y donde lo puedo conseguir, les estare eternamente agradecido por su ayuda. mil gracias

Gustavo Aoosta

Matt Fleming's picture

Lo siento

Mi español no es tan bueno. El traductor en mi ordenador me dice que usted esté preguntando acerca de un jugador mp3 que usted formató accidentalmente. Desafortunadamente no soy familiar con el equipo o software en la pregunta, deseo que podría estar de más uso.

buena suerte,


Question In English

This is what my translator thinks the question is..

I have mp3 to player duo spirit 1Gb and by mistake the formatie, and now it does not reproduce the musica to me, as I can place the reproductive program again to him and where I can obtain it, them estare eternally thanked for by its aid.

thousand thanks

Gustavo Aoosta

My answer in English

I'm sorry, my Spanish is not so good. The translator on my computer tells me that you are asking about an mp3 player that you accidentally formatted. Unfortunately I'm not familiar with the equipment or software in question, I wish I could be of more use.

good luck,


I'm not a Spanish speaker

I'm not a Spanish speaker but I can translate better than that! Too bad computer translators don't get the meaning of the words and they actually give a "mot-a-mot" translation. Still, I don't know if the Spanish guy does but I appreciate you took the time to give an answer in his language.
Samuel Stanislas, part of the Traduceri Legalizate team.

What are you asking

What are you asking about....can you write in translator is not working properly right know...SEO India

Weird USB Problem

I'm running Debian Lenny with KDE, and my USB drive is shown as sdb1 and i'm able to mount it as root, but I'm unable to access the drive when i'm not in root. I don't know how to change the file permissions to be able to view it normally. Any help is greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance,



I just did some regular upgrade in my debian sid, then the gnome will not automount my usb disks if I use a normal user. However, with root account, it still works, but it will not umount the disk when I exit from gnome. I suspect that it might be a problem of gnome-volume-manager. Does anyone have the same problem?

Omidiu part of Traduceri autorizate team