I am working on a Windows 10 computer and have a 64 GB USB drive here. I want to install tails on this drive, then on the same drive another linux distro but in another partition so that from this usb drive I can boot several lunix distros at my will. I also want to keep using this as a regular Windows usb drive to store files and so on. I would like to have at least 40GB for the data storage and use the rest for the various linux distros.

The problem is that every software I use seems to partition the whole usb drive and I

1) Dont want to waste 64GB for a single distro


2) Dont want to keep around 3-4 usb drives when I could only have one.


  • What keeps you from creating several partitions using fdisk etc?
    – dirkt
    Jan 31, 2017 at 9:24
  • Hi, I don't know how to do that. If I try to partition the drive then from the tails installer i must always reformat the whole drive
    – Ddddddd
    Jan 31, 2017 at 13:29
  • You should format first partition 40 GB as Fat32/NTFS when Windows 10 can not read ext3/ext4. You can install linux distros on second/third partition and install grub bootloader on MBR of usb drive.
    – supriady
    Feb 1, 2017 at 6:31

1 Answer 1


Windows only recognizes the very FIRST partition on a drive as USB/External Storage. However, your system BIOS is smart enough to recognize to boot from whichever partition you mark as "bootable". You'll need to use a utility like cfdisk, fdisk, or Minitool partition wizard (if you're on windows) to do this. So just make the first partition your empty storage for windows, and make the second partition dedicated for tails. You clearly need to know a bit about partitioning to do this (especially if you're 100% new to linux).

  • Hi, I have minitool partiton wizard since i'm on Win10 and I created two partition: one NTFS (recognised by windows) and an ext4 one. Now should I launch tails from a live DVD and install it permanently on the usb drive, in the ext4 partition?
    – Ddddddd
    Feb 2, 2017 at 15:58

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